django-masquerade Documentation

Masquerade is a simple app to allow site administrators (IE, any user with is_staff = True) to browse the site as a different user.

It is implemented via a middleware that looks for a specific key in the user's session -- the user to masquerade as. Also included are views and templates to allow the staff user to enter a username to masquerade and turn off masquerading as well as a template tag that provides links to these views for staff users.


  • pip install django-masquerade (or clone/fork)
  • Add "masquerade" to your INSTALLED_APPS setting
  • Add "masquerade.middleware.MasqueradeMiddleware" to your MIDDLEWARE_CLASSES setting. Note this must come after Session and Authentication middleware classes.
  • Include masquerade.urls from your project's root urls module
  • Optionally load and use the masquerade template tag library in your templates.

Note that there is one template supplied by this app, masquerade/mask_form.html, which does not inherit from any other template. I recommend you simply copy this into your own template directory and edit as needed to match your site's look and feel.


masquerade depends on django's SessionMiddleware and, obviously, django.contrib.auth.

The unit tests depend on the mock library.

Template Tags

The masquerade template tag library provides the following tags:

  • masquerade_link creates a link to either the "Masquerade as user" URL (if masquerading is not active) or the "Turn off masquerading" URL (if masquerading is active).
  • masquerade_status displays the name of the (other) user that the currently logged in user is masquerading as.

Note: These template tags require that the request object be in the template context, so use RequestContext to render the template and make sure the django.core.context_processors.request context processor is used.


The following settings can be set in your project's settings file.

  • MASQUERADE_REDIRECT_URL (default: "/"). The URL to redirect the user to after masquerading is activated.
  • MASQUERADE_REQUIRE_SUPERUSER (default: False). If set to true, only users with both is_staff and is_superuser set to True will be allowed to use this feature.