[Distutils] Re: bdist_deb patches

Geoffrey T. Dairiki dairiki at dairiki.org
Tue Nov 9 16:53:26 CET 2004

On Mon, 2004-11-08 at 20:30, Sean Reifschneider wrote:
> >Using debchange to generate the changelog entry would eliminate
> >the need for parseaddr and formatdate altogether, so perhaps that
> >is the best way to go.  Comments?
> That seems like a win.

Yup, it's already done, thanks to your initial suggestion.
The current set of patches (posted on the patch tracker) uses
debchange to generate the debian.changelog.

> >It looks like you don't use sdist to build your source distribution,
> >since it includes files which aren't in the MANIFEST.
> That's true.  I have my own process for building the source tar which
> involves CVS, tags, a clean checkout of that tag from the repository,
> and running a script if present.  Since not all my code releases are
> Python, I'd prefer if I could continue releasing code in that way, but
> would consider another option if required.

I've also modified things so that the dh_make stage looks for doc files
to include in the distribution after the sdist building stage.
This avoids the error you were experiencing.  (But your doc files
would still not make it into the Debian package unless you included
them in the MANIFEST(.in).)

> >As far as I can tell, README and README.txt are the only doc-type files
> >that distutils treats specially.  (They automatically get added to the
> >MANIFEST.)  Are there any PEPs or other standards which suggest
> >other standard names for doc files?
> In my case, I don't have README in doc, I have documentation for the
> system in there.  README is in the top directory.

Understood.   My code (if you don't default the --doc-files option to
bdist_deb) uses some (fairly dumb) heuristics to look for files which 
should be placed in the /usr/share/doc/<package-name>/ directory within
the Debian binary package.   Files in that directory include some
Debian-specific files like the debian changelog, but also "should"
include things like the python packages README, and probably things
like your doc/ subdirectory.

I was wondering if there are any Python-specific standards or
suggestions which suggested names for these doc-like files.
(The GNU coding standards, http://www.gnu.org/prep/standards/,
for example specify names for certain files like NEWS, INSTALL,
README, COPYING, ChangeLog.)   I've looked for an appropriate PEP
and not found it.   The only evidence of any special filenames
I've found is that distutils sdist looks for README and README.txt.

Anyhow, thanks again for the comments, Sean.
Try out the latest patches when you get a chance.
The latest patchset (fresh yesterday) can be found at


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