[Distutils] Reviving PEP 470 - Removing External Hosting support on PyPI

Paul Moore p.f.moore at gmail.com
Thu Aug 27 10:28:32 CEST 2015

On 27 August 2015 at 02:24, Donald Stufft <donald at stufft.io> wrote:
> While developing Warehouse, one of the things I wanted to get done was a final ruling on PEP 470. With that in mind I’d like to bring it back up for discussion and hopefully ultimately a ruling.
> Their are two major differences in this version of PEP 470, and I’d like to point them out explicitly.
> Removal of the “External Repository Discover” feature. I’ve been thinking about this for awhile, and I finally removed it. I’ve always been uncomfortable with this feature and I finally realized why it was. Essentially, the major use case for not hosting things on PyPI that I think PyPI can reasonably be expected to accommodate is people who cannot publish their software to the US for various reasons. At the time I came up with the solution I did, It was an attempt to placate the folks who were against PEP 470 while assuming very few people would ever actually use it, essentially a junk feature to push the PEP through. I think that the feature itself is a bad feature and I think it presents a poor experience for people who want to use it, so I’ve removed it from the PEP and instead focused the PEP on explicitly recommending that all installers should implement the ability to specify multiple repositories and deprecating and removing the ability for finding anything but files hosted by the repository itself on /simple/.

+1 on the proposal.

Agreed that while the removal of the external hosting/discovery
feature is a regression, it's one we need to make in order to provide
a clean baseline and a good user experience.

Encouraging people to set up an external index if they have off-PyPI
hosting requirements seems entirely reasonable. But I would say
(having tried to do this for testing and personal use in the past)
it's not easy to find good documentation on how to set up an external
index (when you're starting from a simple web host). Having a "how to
set up a PyPI-style simple index" document, linked from the PEP (and
ultimately from the docs) would be a useful resource for people in
general, and a good starting point for any discussion with people who
have requirements for not hosting on PyPI. Probably putting such a
document in https://packaging.python.org/en/latest/distributing.html
would make sense.


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