[Distutils] "Python Package Management Sucks"

Jeff Younker jeff at drinktomi.com
Tue Sep 23 23:30:11 CEST 2008


I have to say, as a developer, and a system administrator, I like  
setuptools.   It does
what I need.  Could it be better?  Sure.  For what I use python for on  
a day-to-day
basis it makes my life a thousand times better than it was before  
setuptools.  Nothing
ruins your day more than spending *hours* tracing down package  
dependencies
just to get the *one* package you need to allow you to perform some  
crucial task.
It's even worse when you have to do it on multiple architectures.

Perl's package location and installation system (CPAN) is one of the  
primary facts
contributing to its success.   Perl is a pig.  It's a charming pig  
that can do lots of tricks,
but a pig none the less.  What makes it shine is CPAN. And here's the  
catch:  CPAN
isn't really any better than setuptools.  It's got warts and nuts all  
over the place, but
it works.

Without setuptools a lot of people wouldn't be using python.  Easily  
installing
packages is critical to the success of a language, and setuptools  
fills that role
admirably.

[ I think what we really need to focus on as a community is binary  
generation
generation.  There are several tools out there that work for different  
platforms,
but nothing that, well, just works everywhere.  I'd far rather have  
one of those,
than bicker over a perfectly functional setuptools. ]

-jeff


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