[Distutils] Access to Python config info

Fred L. Drake Fred L. Drake, Jr." <fdrake@acm.org
Tue, 22 Dec 1998 17:35:31 -0500 (EST)

John Skaller writes:
 >         Obviously, this does not work. It tests if there is
 > a symlinks attribute in os, not what should be tested:
 >         1) if there is an attribute symlinks, it works according to spec
 >         2) if there is not, then the os doesn't support symlinks
 > To perform (1) would require actually creating some symlinks,
 > and seeing if they 'worked'. This is what autoconf does;
 > it tries to compile various features, and it tests them
 > as well (where they're _apparently_ available, and where it
 > is possible to do a short test).
 >         It would be much easier to _document_ that
 > the symlinks attribute is present if and only if
 > creation of symbolic links is supported with
 > semantics XXXX (fill in specification here).

  Oh, you want this to be an *operating system* standard.  I don't
think PyOS has been released yet.
  Seriously, a language should expose interfaces to system services,
not make guarantees as to the conformance of the O/S to some
standard.  I think the Open Group is in charge of X/Open conformance
these days.
  If you want a higher level interface, you need to build it.  Once
you've demonstrated generality, you can describe it as a standard,
document it, and try and get others to adopt it.  *That's*
standardization.  There are good reasons the IETF requires at least
two independent implementations of a specification to make it an
internet standard:  that shows that the interface is sufficiently
general and useful that it was worth two organizations supporting the
development work.  Until, it's just a specification.  Which is the
most we need here.

 > with some work done on building these frames,
 > but I'm not actually using any of it.

  Sounds like it's not really needed.

 >         You might start by reading the relevant sections
 > in the online interscript doco. Then there
 > is something concrete to discuss.

  As Greg Stein asked: please provide *specific* pointers: which
sections are relevant?

 > Consider JPython everywhere. Don't assume CPython.

  Good point, especially for those of us that don't normally use it.


Fred L. Drake, Jr.	     <fdrake@acm.org>
Corporation for National Research Initiatives
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