FMS, an agent-based Financial Market Simulator

FMS download and installation


Latest stable version of FMS is 0.1.9.

Installing FMS


If you installed from source (see below) and a previous version of FMS is installed on your system, uninstall it prior to installing the new version. Really. I mean it. See Uninstalling FMS below for detailed instructions about uninstallation.


  • A working installation of the Python language (, version should be 2.4 or greater.
  • The PyYaml library ( is necessary to read configuration files. Note that installing FMS with the pip installer would automatically install PyYaml if it is missing on your system.

Linux and BSD distributions

Installing with pip

The preferred way to install FMS is to use pip (Pip Installs Python). You may even choose to install it in a Virtual environment to isolate it.

Whichever environment you chose, simply:

$ pip install fms

And you’re done. You may even upgrade an FMS installation:

$ pip install -U fms

Installing from source

I cannot imagine any good reason not to benefit of pip goodness, unless you want to get the source to contribute. Anyway, it is possible to install from source.

Get the source package (see getting FMS sources below), uncompress it wherever you think is a suitable place (usr/local/src/ might seem a clever choice, though).

cd to the newly created directory. Then run this command (as root) from a command prompt:

$ python install

As an alternative, you may just copy or link the fms directory in your Python’s installation site-packages directory.

In addition, you may move the script somewhere on your path.

To check that anything went well, cd to the tests directory and run:

$ python


If you use ActivePython, your best bet is to install FMS through the PyPM installer, as you would do for any other third-party package.

Otherwise, you can install a binary package from the github download section.

First, make sure you installed Python and YAML (see requirements above).

Get the Windows FMS installer from FMS main repository download section and put it somewhere on the desktop, then double-click on it. Leave the default answers to all the questions (or be prepared to remember what you did, to swear, and to cry... That is, unless you really know what you are doing, of course).

Then you may run FMS from IDLE or from the command line. The command line is the prefered way to run FMS.

Running FMS from the command line

If you choosed to run FMS from the command line, then get a command prompt, cd to FMS’s installation directory [1] and try:


(To get a command prompt, go to Start then Run and type in cmd in the box).

If all goes well, you should get this output:

Usage: [options] [command] simulationconffile

runs a Financial Market Simulator simulation

  -h, --help            show this help message and exit
  -v, --verbose         Set logging level to 'info'. Overrided by --loglevel.
  -L LEVEL, --loglevel=LEVEL
                        Set logging level to LEVEL: debug, info, warning,
                        error, critical.
CRITICAL - fms - Missing command name.

If instead you get an error message yelling that the system is unable to find something called python on your machine, then the python executable is probably not on the search path of your system. Read below to know how to add it.

If it did not run as expected

On Windows machines, the Python installation is usually placed in C:\PythonXY, where X and Y stand for the major and minor Python version number. For an example, the installation directory for Python 2.6 would be C:\Python26. To add this directory to your path, right-click on the My computer icon on your desktop, and go to Properties. In the pop-up dialogue window, click on the Advanced tab and then on the Environment Variables button. In the new dialogue that pops up, click on the Path variable in the System Variables box then click the Edit button.

Then add the following at the end of the string in the Variable value textbox:


Do not forget the trailing backslash !

Note that you should adapt to the version of python you installed, and to the path where you installed it. It might as well be:

C:\Program Files\Python26\;

Then, start or go to a command prompt, and try:


You should get something like:

Python 2.6.1 (r261:67517, Dec 4 2008, 16:51:00) [MSC v.1500 32 bit (Intel)]
on win32
Type "help", "copyright", "credits" or "license" for more information.

Congratulations! Python is succesfully installed on your machine. Then, at the Python prompt (the >>>), try:

import yaml

The answer should be nothing, and you should be at the python prompt again. YAML is correctly installed as well. Enter exit() at the prompt to leave Python. You may now go back to the running FMS from the command line section.

Running FMS from IDLE

IDLE stands for Integrated DeveLopment Environment, and is mainly used on Windows systems. Once Python is installed on your system, IDLE might be started from the Python submenu in the main menu.

Although it is meant as a development environment, IDLE is able to run scripts (passing options and arguments to them). See IDLE documentation for detailed information on how to run scripts from IDLE.

Uninstalling FMS

Uninstalling on Linux and BSD

If you installed FMS with pip, then simply:

$ pip uninstall fms

And you’re done.

If you installed from source, cd to your Python’s installation site-packages directory, and remove fms directory and egg-info file:

$ rm -r fms*

Then remove the script from where it was installed, probably /usr/bin/ or /usr/local/bin/ on Unix.

Uninstalling on Windows

On Windows, if you used a binary installer, you may uninstall FMS directly from the application managing all installed programs. Otherwise, go to your Python installation directory (usually C:\Python26), then to the Site-packages directory, and delete anything fms-related in it (probably a directory called fms).

You’re done. Thanks for giving FMS a try !

Getting FMS sources

If you need to get packaged sources of FMS, either as a zip file or a tarball, then go to FMS main repository and use the download facilities.

In addition, you may clone the source repository of FMS. As it is managed with the git VCS, you need first to install it, then to get the repository run:

$ git clone git://

If you develop new classes or squash bugs, consider sending a patch, or asking for pull access on the repository.


[1]Which should be the Scripts directory in you Python installation directory, i.e. C:\Python26\Scripts