[Distutils] Migration Path to metadata was: Remove distutils, was: red, green, refactor ...

Nick Coghlan ncoghlan at gmail.com
Fri Oct 23 15:12:41 EDT 2015

On 22 October 2015 at 18:07, Thomas Güttler
<guettliml at thomas-guettler.de> wrote:
> Am 21.10.2015 um 17:05 schrieb Nick Coghlan:
>> 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:
>> https://bitbucket.org/pypa/setuptools/issues/417/adopt-distutils
>> 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.
> I guess you have a rough migration path in your mind? I guess some
> people here are interested.

The people here are the ones already building it: ensuring setuptools
can generate any required metadata, using pip to inject setuptools
into the build process for projects using plain distutils.

Providing the option for folks that don't want to use distutils or
setuptools to be able to use something else and have pip handle that
reliably would be a nice addition, especially if it's done in a
beginner friendly way that can become the new default build tool
recommendation, but ideas for improvement that start with expecting
tens of thousands of project owners to change the build system they
use aren't going to work.


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

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