[Catalog-sig] Package maintenance mechanism for Python

Richard Jones richardjones at optushome.com.au
Fri Apr 29 11:52:10 CEST 2005

Hash: SHA1

On Wed, 27 Apr 2005 08:34 am, Maurice Ling wrote:
> PyPI has a module upload mechanism. But is there a module download
> mechanism.

Not yet. You are welcome to write it.

> By that, I meant a mechanism which system admins can use to 
> download and install a module (library)

This, as you already note, is trivial. Python's built-in urllib and xmlrpclib 
make it so.

> and keep track of what is 
> installed into site-package directory through this mechanism?

PEP 262 is an attempt to address this:


A large amount of discussion exists around whether Python *should* have such a 
database, or whether we should leave such things up to the Operating System 
packaging mechanisms (rpm, deb, etc.) I fall in the latter category at the 

> The problem I see is that maintaining 3rd party libraries in
> site-package is a task for system admins or developers, especially when
> new versions of Python is installed (say from Python 2.3 to Python 2.4).

The Ubuntu people have ideas about addressing this for pure-python packages, 
but they include massive amounts of symlinks, and just not bothering with 
trying to address cross-version issues when they hit a non-pure-python 
package (ie. one that has a C extension). I think. It's all still a bit 
vague :)

> All of the libraries (esp those with C modules) needs to be recompiled.
> Is there a mechanism for the programmers to find out what is installed
> in say, Python2.3's site-packages and download the same modules from
> PyPI and install them in Python2.4's site-packages?

I believe PEP 246 is intended to have this kind of information. Feel free to 
read and flesh it out. And implement it.

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