[Distutils] One Package Per Project

Ronald Oussoren ronaldoussoren at mac.com
Fri May 1 16:43:31 CEST 2009

I'm -1 on that, for three reasons.

1. I have a number of packages where the PyPI name is not the name of the toplevel package where the two names aren't the same on purpose. An example of this is "pyobjc-framework-WebKit", containing the python package "WebKit". The two don't have the same name because "import WebKit" is more natural during imports, while "pyobjc-framework-WebKit" is clearer in the PyPI listing (you don't have to wonder if this is some cross-platform web toolkit, it's obviously related to PyObjC).

2. For basicly the same reason a number of my PyPI packages have a number of toplevel Python packages. That's again because that makes sense for these packages, and it's furthermore needed for backward compatibility.

3. There actually a good reason for using "pysomelib" instead of "somelib" as the PyPI name for the python bindings for the C library "somelib". Naming the python bindings the same as the base project is confusion, while at the same time "import pysomelib" looks lame in Python code.

That said, I agree that there should be a good reason for not using the python package/module name as the PyPI name, and I'm +1 on adding advice to the distutils documentation to keep the two the same.

It's also not clear to me what your proposal would mean for namespace packages. Would packages like "zope.interface" be allowed with your proposal?

On Friday, May 01, 2009, at 04:20PM, "Brandon Craig Rhodes" <brandon at rhodesmill.org> wrote:
>I think that, going forward, Python packaging tools (not installation
>tools; they should remain as they are, for backwards compatibility)
>should move to supporting only One Package Per Project.  And, each
>project should have the same name as the package inside.  In the future,
>people should have to download an old copy of distutils deliberately if
>they want to build projects with several packages inside; we should stop
>releasing tools that support or encourage it.
> 1. It is easier on developers who want to "import escher" to know that
>    they can simply list "escher" as a dependency instead of having to
>    guess whether it's "Escher" or "EscherProject" or whether it's part
>    of a larger "lithographers" project or whether, heaven forbid, the
>    author decided to redundantly call the project "pyescher".
> 2. This practice would make PyPI's name make actual sense.  It actually
>    claims to be (you can check the site!) the "Python *Package* Index"
>    whereas in fact it's currently nothing of the sort!  It's really an
>    index of "projects" that might have zero, one, or several packages
>    inside of them.  We should move all projects towards the good
>    behavior of the ones that already name themselves after the single
>    package that they contain.
> 3. I think the whole idea of putting several packages in a project was
>    useful back when dependencies didn't exist.  It made sense, in
>    ancient days, for "ZODB" to include "transaction" because there was
>    no other way to make sure they got installed together.  But now that
>    dependencies are possible, there is no longer a need for multiple-
>    package project that outweights the costs involved.
> 4. The current scheme makes it impossible to choose a "safe" package
>    name when creating and registering a new package.  Just because
>    there's no "escher" *project* when you look at PyPI doesn't mean
>    that some project doesn't have an "escher" package hidden inside.
>    You could choose a package name, distribute your product, and only
>    find out later that your users cannot install both your product and
>    another product simultaneously because the other product was, in
>    fact, already using that package name but without your knowing it.
>Brandon Craig Rhodes   brandon at rhodesmill.org   http://rhodesmill.org/brandon
>Distutils-SIG maillist  -  Distutils-SIG at python.org

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