[Distutils] "Python Package Management Sucks"

Phillip J. Eby pje at telecommunity.com
Wed Oct 1 20:39:03 CEST 2008

At 11:00 AM 10/1/2008 -0700, Toshio Kuratomi wrote:
>I have no love for how pkg_resources implements this (including the API)
>but the idea of retrieving data files, locales, config files, etc from
>an API is good.  For packages to be coded that conform to the File
>Hierachy Standard on Linux, the API (and metadata) needs to be more

There's some confusion here.  pkg_resources implements *resource* 
management and *metadata* management...  NOT "file management".

Resource files and metadata are no more "data" in the FHS sense than 
static data segments in a .so file are; they are simply a more 
convenient way of including such data than having a giant base64 
string or something like that hardcoded into the program 
itself.  There is thus no relevance to the FHS and absolutely no 
reason for them to live anywhere except within the Python packages 
they are a part of.

>   We need to be able to mark locale, config, and data files in
>the metadata.

Sure...  and having a standard for specifying that kind of 
application/system-level install stuff is great; it's just entirely 
outside the scope of what eggs are for.

To be clear, I mean here that a "file" (as opposed to a resource) is 
something that the user is expected to be able to read or copy, or 
modify.  (Whereas a resource is something that is entirely internal 
to a library, and metadata is information *about* the library itself.)

>   The build/install tool needs to be able to install those
>into the filesystem in the proper places for a Linux distro, an egg,
>etc.  and then we need to be able to call an API to retrieve the
>specific class of resources or a directory associated with them.

Agreed...  assuming of course that we're keeping a clear distinction 
between static resources+metadata and actual "data" (e.g. configuration) files.

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