[Distutils] Package install failures in 2.6.3 - setuptools vs Distribute

K. Richard Pixley rich at noir.com
Mon Oct 5 16:25:44 CEST 2009

Ronald Oussoren wrote:
> For beginners this issue is a showstopper that they cannot resolve without help.
I'm a relative beginner to distutils/setuptools/distribute, but a long 
time configuration/build/packaging professional.  You're mistaken if you 
think that any of these technologies are suitable for beginners.  The 
state of python package distribution resembles the state of linux 
packages circa 1995, except that it isn't very well documented at all.

Easy_install certainly isn't, and never has been.  My first questions 
about easy_install, (how do I get a list of installed packages?  How do 
I upgrade all installed packages?  How do I delete a package using 
easy_install?) are all unanswerable.

I' spent over 20 hours this weekend just reading through documentation 
trying to figure out what the state of the art is expected to be here 
and I still don't know much.  That's far beyond the investment of a 
casual user.  I'm puzzled that people wonder why I haven't used standard 
packaging yet when it's pretty clear that standard packaging and 
distribution doesn't really solve my problems.

Python packaging and distribution right now is not for beginners or the 
faint of heart.

--rich - (who came here recently looking for an opportunity to write 
something akin to stdeb.)

More information about the Distutils-SIG mailing list