[Distutils] Remove distutils, was: red, green, refactor ...

Nick Coghlan ncoghlan at gmail.com
Wed Oct 21 17:05:29 CEST 2015

On 21 October 2015 at 14:55, David Cournapeau <cournape at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Wed, Oct 21, 2015 at 12:52 PM, Thomas Güttler
> <guettliml at thomas-guettler.de> wrote:
>> ok, at the moment setuptools uses distutils.
>> Why not melt them together into **one** underwear-pants-module?
> What do you hope getting from that ? distutils is in the stdlib, so cannot
> change easily, and even if putting setuptools in the stdlib were possible,
> you would now need to handle different versions of setuptools for different
> versions of python.

It's more useful to go the other direction and vendor a modern version
of distutils inside setuptools:

distutils can then optionally be replaced wholesale at runtime, rather
than having the internals be monkeypatched.

> On top of this, the goal of lots of efforts around packaging is to allow
> people to move away from distutils/setuptools, as the underlying design is
> fundamentally difficult to extend.

We still need a migration path to modern metadata standards for
everyone using distutils and setuptools - that's the side of things
that caused major problems for both distribute and distutils2.


Nick Coghlan   |   ncoghlan at gmail.com   |   Brisbane, Australia

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