[Distutils] Beginning of support for binary distributions
Thu, 30 Mar 2000 22:26:04 -0500
Hi all --
I've just checked in the beginnings of support for creating "built
distributions" (aka binary distributions, but of course they aren't
necessarily binary -- you might want to distribute something that is
immediately installable but contains only Python code).
This consists of two commands so far, 'bdist' and 'bdist_dumb'. These
follow the model of the 'build' and 'install' families, where there is
one high-level coordinator, and "sub-commands" that do the real work.
So far, obviously, there's only one bdist sub-command, and all it
creates are "dumb" built distributions -- tarballs and zip files that
you unpack from <prefix> or <exec-prefix>.
There are a number of obvious weaknesses to this, but this was intended
more as a warm-up exercise than the real thing. First of all, the end
user has to somehow know to chdir to Python's <prefix> or <exec-prefix>
and unpack the dumb distribution there. Worse, they have to know to
sometimes chdir to to <prefix>, and sometimes <exec-prefix> -- assuming
there's even a difference on their system. Anyways, as I said, this is
*not* the be-all, end-all to creating built Python module distributions!
However, it's all that I could whip up in three evenings.
If you'd like to try it out, please do! Here's the basic idea:
python setup.py bdist
python setup.py bdist --formats=gztar # or zip, tar, or ztar
The default format is currently gztar for Unix, zip for Windows.
Obviously, that will have to get a bit more complicated: we'll want to
create an RPM on RPM-based systems, a Debian package on Debian systems,
a BSD package on BSD systems, some sort of executable installer
(probably Wise) on Windows systems, etc. But for now, you get either a
tarball or a zipfile, and if you don't specify --formats, you get
whatever is sensible on your current OS.
For example, if I go to my NumPy 15.2 directory (which is identical to
the NumPy 15.2 distribution, *except* I use the example NumPy setup
script included with the Distutils!) and run this:
$ python setup.py bdist
then I get (roughly) this output:
[...build output omitted...]
hard linking build/lib.linux-i586/ArrayPrinter.py -> build/bdist/lib/python1.5/site-packages/Numeric
hard linking build/lib.linux-i586/FFT.py -> build/bdist/lib/python1.5/site-packages/Numeric
[...and so on, for all modules that NumPy would install...]
changing into 'build/bdist'
tar -cf /scratch/python/Numerical-15.2/Numerical-15.2.linux-i586.tar .
changing back to '/scratch/python/Numerical-15.2'
and the resulting tarball, Numerical-15.2.linux-i586.tar.gz, looks like
$ tar tzf Numerical-15.2.linux-i586.tar.gz
which reduces installing Numerical Python to a mere
$ cd `python -c "import sys; print sys.exec_prefix"`
$ tar xzvf /scratch/python/Numerical-15.2/Numerical-15.2.linux-i586.tar.gz
OK, OK, so it's not immediately obvious that this is better than a
simple "python setup.py install". ;-) But think of the possibilities!
* if a distribution needs a .pth file, it is neither created nor
included in the built distribution
Feel free to add to this list...
Greg Ward - just another /P(erl|ython)/ hacker email@example.com
If it can't be expressed in figures, it is not science--it is opinion.