[Distutils] formencode as .egg in Debian ??

"Martin v. Löwis" martin at v.loewis.de
Tue Nov 22 23:41:06 CET 2005

Phillip J. Eby wrote:
>> If you have many zipfiles on sys.path, all applications will suffer
>> from having to read the TOC of all those zipfiles, even if they need
>> none of them. OTOH, if you had packages inside site-python, the
>> contents of the unused packages is simply ignored.
> I'm sorry, but this is, shall we say, "fact challenged"?  .pth files' 
> contents are added to the *end* of sys.path.  This means that stdlib 
> imports and normal site-packages imports are satisfied *before* any 
> hypothetical overhead from .pth entries, whether they're zipfiles or 
> directories.

Correct. I was not talking about stdlib imports. I was talking about 
imports satisfied from the end of sys.path, or imports resulting in

> If Python never reaches the .pth entries at runtime, it 
> will not even read the zipfile TOCs, let alone attempting to stat() for 
> contained packages.

Correct. However, a false preposition can imply anything: Python
*always* reaches the .pth entries atleast once, in a typical
installation, while looking for sitecustomize. This will cause
a load of all zipfiles on sys.path, before site.py is done.

> Please check your facts before spreading untruths like this

I did check: I have a file a.pth in site-packages, which refers to
a.zip (in the same directory), and I have an empty Python file e.py.

strace -o xxx python e.py

shows, among others

open("/usr/lib/python2.3/site-packages/a.zip", O_RDONLY|O_LARGEFILE) = 5
ead(5, "PK\3\4\n\0\0\0\0\0\202\274v3\265<\267\r\16\0\0\0\16\0\0"..., 
132) = 132

So a.zip is read even though the program does not contain
a single import statement.

What is the untruth I'm spreading?


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