[Distutils] Installing scripts

Tim Peters tim.one at comcast.net
Thu Jun 10 17:31:17 EDT 2004

[Fred L. Drake, Jr.]
> It doesn't bother me, but I can't speak for others.  It's not clear when
> .txt extensions should be added; things like the README are most useful
> when a distribution is unpacked.

Any file without an extension is hard to live with on Windows.  No
exceptions.  The pain is pervasive, because Windows uses (non-empty)
extensions to associate *all* actions with files.  This is how Windows
works, and it's not going to change soon.  For example, it's difficult for
me to edit a text file on Windows with an empty extension.  My expensive
project-oriented Windows editor doesn't believe that files with empty
extensions *can* be part of a project, so it doesn't show them to me.  If I
force it to load such a file anyway, it has no idea how to set its 100-or-so
content-customized behaviors, because those key off the extension too.
That's just one, compounded example of needless difficulty.

That shouldn't have much to do with disutils, though, it's a requirement for
making development pleasant on Windows.

> That indicates the "sdist" command is a good candidate,

Text files need text extensions on Windows all the time.

> but I don't know how often that's actually used (rather than just
> rolling a tarball from a CVS or Subversion export).  There's
> also not good metadata support for documentation files in general in
> distutils.

For example, I don't think the ZODB distribution installs the .pdf doc files
anywhere.  Maybe it does on Linux; it doesn't on Windows (but there's no
screamingly obvious place to put them on Windows anyway).

> It would be nice to improve that situation.  Again, we have
> cross-platform issues (CHM files on Windows, text files that need
> line-end normalization, and probably lots more).

Curiously, the Zope X3 Windows installer I built from your Linux tarball
supplied "the right" line ends for Windows, but this was mostly luck:  I
happened to use WinZip to unpack the tarball before running bdist_wininst,
and by default WinZip changes line ends by magic as part of unpacking.

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