[Distutils] [Python Language Summit] Distutils / Packaging survey

David Cournapeau david at ar.media.kyoto-u.ac.jp
Wed Jan 28 11:45:38 CET 2009

zooko wrote:
> On Jan 27, 2009, at 15:00 PM, Tarek Ziadé wrote:
>> There were also a bdist_deb project but it never made it to
>> distutils, also for Debian there's a policy on how to work with
>> python packages :
>> http://www.debian.org/doc/packaging-manuals/python-policy/
>> Last, this mailing list had a lot of threads about the fact that
>> there's no standard way in Python to work with resources that could
>> be installed in the system, using a LSB-compliant approach.
>> So I don't have (I think no one does at this point) any clear view of
>> what could be done in this area.
> I don't understand what are the potential problems, but so far I've
> been happy using stdeb to produce .deb's from my Python sdists.

This is not the right solution for distributions maintainers: it is a
good tool for individual (it gives you uninstallation, etec...) but .deb
packages produced by stddeb are not debian-compatible, and cannot be
included in debian proper. This is not a critic of stddeb, I think it is
a very good tool and useful tool.

The *only* right solution for packaging python modules on Linux
distribution is to make it as "easy" for packagers as it is for autoconf
packages. Meaning having clear differences between installation, binary,
libraries, etc... (what's called resources by setuptools, IIUC), so that
maintainers can set it up how they want. This way, python developers do
not have to care about debian, and distributions maintainers do not have
to care about python (well, not more than now).

It is a solved problem: autoconf does it well, and has all the required


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