Phillip J. Eby wrote:
As for the "use of a compiler other than the one that built Python itself", that's not correct either. For example, it is common to build Python extensions for Windows using distutils and the MinGW compiler, even though Python itself is built with Visual C++. Also, it's possible to get the distutils to build using the freeware version of Visual C++ as well.
Unfortunately there is a good deal of outdated information on the web that lists all sorts of hoops one needs to jump through to support a compiler such as MinGW. Or rather, used to have to jump through. Things are much easier now. Take Qt for example. Most people still refer to a webpage that lists lots of steps that are no longer needed, at least not with Python 2.4.