This post is the start of a little series called Django Tips, answers to short, common questions I receive from readers.

Question: Why do we explicitly call python manage.py makemigrations users instead of just python manage.py makemigrations in DjangoX?

Answer: This pattern is also used in my books and for good reason. When you just type python makemigrations then ALL existing migrations are run. This can be a problem if you have made changes to multiple apps, for example users and also blog. The resulting migrations file will contain information on BOTH which makes it harder to debug issues in the future. The goal is to keep every migration as concise and atomic as possible.

If you add the specific app name to the end of the command, so python makemigrations user then only the migrations for that specific app are run. After you can run python makemigrations blog if you have two different changes ready to commit.

So get in the habit of being explicit with every migration file you recreate. It’s a best practice that will help you down the road.

Want to learn more about Django? Check out my book Django for Beginners.