# [Catalog-sig] Re: [Distutils] More documentation for setup meta-data

Richard Jones rjones@ekit-inc.com
Fri, 28 Feb 2003 08:51:51 +1100

On Thu, 27 Feb 2003 7:25 pm, M.-A. Lemburg wrote:
> Richard Jones wrote:
> > I'm trying to better document the meta-data for the distutils (and hence
> > PyPI). I've added words to the section in the dev doc about meta-data,
> > and would like some feedback before I post the patch to be applied.
> > Sorry, it's in LaTeX form (until someone writes the ReST->python doc
> > converter ;)
> >
> >   \lineiii{classifiers}{a list of Trove classifiers}{list of
> > strings}{(3)} \end{tableiii}
>
> is listed in the DistributionMetaData). I wonder why you mention
> it here.

It is new in 2.3

> The concept of a single URL for downloads seems to simplistic to
> handle the issues involved with automatic installation. This
> information should also be provided in a lazy way, so that the
> placing the information in an XML file on his site and then
> referencing this file in the distutils meta data.
>
> The file should then be parsed by a distutils subcommand to
> Python version.

This system sounds quite useful and flexible. It could also get very
still be used for this purpose if it specifies a metadata file as the

On the other hand, Anthony Baxter has written a distutils command that will
download a specified package and install it. This was recently posted to
distutils-sig "first cut at a distutils 'fetch' command". Sure, it's not an
optimal solution - in the same way that PyPI is going to need tweaking over
time once it's actually used. It's a start though.

Note that I would like to see an alternative system that is used to
disseminate packages which uses a set of mirrors similar to CPAN. There's an
accepted naming system so that the package may be found just using the
package name and version, and a fatch command that attempts to download the
package from one or more of the mirrors (depending on availability). PyPI
then supplies a list of the mirror sites. Distutils may also offer an upload
command, to make life even easier for the package maintainer. No need to