[Distutils] Importable wheels using distlib/distil

Vinay Sajip vinay_sajip at yahoo.co.uk
Wed Mar 27 21:50:51 CET 2013

Jim Fulton <jim <at> zope.com> writes:

> It's a trap!
> At least on Unix systems:
> - Extensions in zip files that get magically extracted to a user's
>   home directory lead to tragic deployment failures for services that
>   run as special users.

I can see how it would lead to problems, but the home directory location is
just as a proof of concept - the cache doesn't need to be in any private place.

> - Zip files are a pain in the ass during development or debugging.

Of course, but wheels are for deployment, not development, and this is one
possibility for deployment (several people have mentioned wanting to sometimes
just add wheels to sys.path rather than installing them, which got me thinking
about this functionality).

> - Zip files are slower to import from (at least in my experience)

It's just another option for a user of wheels. Caveat emptor, and all that.

> It would be far better IMO to just unzip the wheel and put that in
> your path.  (I'm hoping that wheels used this way are a suitable
> replacement for eggs.)

Well that's tantamount to installing the wheel, which is fine. I was thinking
along the line of egg replacement - AFAIK eggs allow you to import extensions
from zip in a similar fashion.


Vinay Sajip

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