[Distutils] Alternate static metadata PEP submission...

David Lyon david.lyon at preisshare.net
Thu Oct 15 01:25:40 CEST 2009

Hi Eric..

On Wed, 14 Oct 2009 08:46:26 -0400, Eric Smith <eric at trueblade.com> wrote:
>>> The first one who mentioned the idea was Eric IIRC, then Matthias and
>>> Tres worked on it.
>> Fine. They've been awfully quiet on distutils-sig lately :-)
> Not so!


>> Sure. Well "collect" is a word ..
> I'm sure no offense was intended. I don't see how we can all know all 
> possible words that might be construed as offensive.

Collect or collection isn't the slightest bit offensive as Python itself 
is merely a collection of a lot of peoples good work.

> I don't see what David is proposing as being radical or even different 
> from what we've been discussing: a single static file that contains 
> enough metadata to describe what's in a distribution. This file needs to 
> be extensible. The Distutils-SIG approach has been incremental, adding 
> small parts. It seems he wants to go "big bang". I think that's fine, 
> but it will be more difficult to migrate to, I fear.

Downloading a new setup.py from a website and writing a setup file
is easier than somebody new than coding a tradional setup.py file.

A tool should be provided to read an existing setup.py and create
the corresponding static file.

> He's proposing shipping an application in each distribution (his new 
> setup.py) that processes that file to do installations. Sounds like a 
> bootstrapper of sorts, and not so radical of an idea. 

It isn't so different technically from what exists in setuptools.

> This setup.py 
> would use parts of existing distutils to do its work, where it can. I 
> think a name other than setup.py would reduce confusion, but the idea 
> seems practical.

Speeking as an end user (system administrator), all the documentation
says type 'setup.py install'. It's a habit. 

I think it's the least confusing thing for an end user.. it might
confuse developers.. not so much I think.

> I'd be interested to hear how this would interact with PyPI and buildout.

There is no impact on pypi or buildout.

The setup.py has all the same behavior as a traditional setup.py except
when it is run at the end users system.

What I mean is that all existing command line options get passed through
and work the same way as before.


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