[Catalog-sig] What is the point of pythonpackages.com?

Martijn Faassen faassen at startifact.com
Mon Feb 6 16:32:59 CET 2012


On 02/05/2012 07:12 PM, Terry Reedy wrote:
> On 2/5/2012 8:37 AM, Kai Diefenbach wrote:
>> Why not? Packages, which are not hosted on PyPi suck.
>
> This is a technical discussion list, not a flame list.
> That comment is both wrong and unhelpful.

'suck' is not the right way to express the problem, and it's the 
original poster's choice to host somewhere else, but it can indeed be 
inconvenient to quite a few users of PyPI if a package is not hosted on 
PyPI.

This because setuptools (and thus, easy_install, pip, buildout) for 
better or for worse uses a "trawl the web" approach to find download 
links, and multiple sites to download from create multiple potential 
points of failure besides PyPI itself.

This makes setuptools work for a range of cases and that's nice, but 
it's also a drawback, because on a fairly regular basis I at least have 
had the issue that a package wasn't hosted on PyPI and that the site 
hosting the package was suddenly down or had changed, breaking the 
setuptools-based automatic download. If the package were hosted on PyPI 
I wouldn't have had this issue, as PyPI itself is actually tolerably 
reliable (especially with mirroring in place; but these external 
packages are also not mirrored).

Of course the response I'll undoubtedly get is that I should host these 
packages myself or include them in my version control system and all 
that. And yes, I can do this, and sometimes I do. But doing that is in 
this subjective user's opinion actually an inconvenience. Any 'pip' user 
that installs a package from PyPI that has dependencies listed in 
setup.py can run into this problem.

So the original poster could at least consider uploading their package 
on PyPI to lessen his complaint. Besides the web UI, they'll find handy 
tools available to help automate things, such as 'setup.py sdist upload' 
and for more power, zest.releaser. But of course they can choose not to 
do so at all too - that's the way things work [1].

Regards,

Martijn

[1] I suspect an alternate timeline in which setuptools had never done 
this web trawling and would only download from PyPI would have lead to a 
more pleasant situation for users, though I'm not sure: setuptools being 
able to download dependencies might've retarded adoption of setuptools 
instead.



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