[Distutils] Distributing modules with dependencies

scleary@jerviswebb.com scleary@jerviswebb.com
Wed May 9 14:37:01 2001

I see that between PEP241 and 243, Py is moving towards a central module
repository.  My question is: has any thought been given to the idea of
having one application/library be dependent on another library, and for the
download/install to be done as part of setup.py?

For example, I'm writing a simple application that uses wxPython -- which
not everyone has installed.  During installation, I can right now in
setup.py abort if wxPython isn't found -- but it would be much nicer to
users (IMO) if it can download & install wxPython silently.

This is more complicated than just that; I'd like to see:
  . The ability for users (special command-line option?) to download all
dependent packages to a local directory first.
  . The ability for distutils to substitute newer versions in place of older
-- this is a lot more tricky, since we *don't* want it to do that for
non-backwards-compatible differences.

I'd like to see the basic functionality anyway, even if the two features
above aren't done until later.  The reason being that my intended user base
are not programmers or even serious computer users at all.  In fact, if
there was any way to package Python itself with my app, I'd like to know
about it (is there?).

I just don't want to see us in the future run into what Linux did a little
while ago -- oh, your update for package x requires an update to package y,
so after you download and install the update to package y, you find it
requires an update to package z, ...