[Distutils] imho Distutils should stop this from happening to poor users....

Ronald Oussoren ronaldoussoren at mac.com
Thu Jun 18 11:05:25 CEST 2009

On 18 Jun, 2009, at 10:45, Tarek Ziadé wrote:

> On Thu, Jun 18, 2009 at 10:26 AM, David Lyon <david.lyon at preisshare.net 
> > wrote:
> Hi All,
> Here's a package installation error message that's just plain scary
> for the average user.
> imho Distutils should have checks to stock packages requiring a C
> compiler from being uploaded. It isn't "right" to expect that
> from users. ie They should get the .pyd files.
> That's not distutils fault, neither easy_install one.
> "appscript" should provide a binary distribution for Windows (it  
> does for Mac OS if you look at the pypi repo)
> Since it doesn't, easy_install grabs the source distro, which is the  
> best behavior I can think of,
> then tries to compile it.

I don't know why it or any other package "should" provide a binary  
distribution for Windows, having one would be nice but shouldn't be a  
hard requirement, ever.

This does point to an missing feature in distutils or setuptools  
though: neither distutils nor setuptools has a way to specify the  
supported platforms, at least not in a way that is actually used  
during installation.  It would be nice if the appscript author could  
add some metadata to his setup.py file that would result in a clear  
error-message when you try to install it on a platform other than  

The only way to achieve that at the moment is to add some code to  
setup.py that explicitly raises an exception when you try to build it  
on an unsupported platform.

The same is true for the python version, pyobjc currently explicitly  
tests for python >= 2.3,<3.0 because other versions aren't supported  
and cause compile errors (at best, IIRC it will compile with python  
2.2 but cause interpreter crashes when you try to use it).


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