[Distutils] Deprecating little used file types/extensions on PyPI?

Nick Coghlan ncoghlan at gmail.com
Sat Aug 20 23:22:57 EDT 2016

On 21 August 2016 at 08:40, Chris Barker - NOAA Federal
<chris.barker at noaa.gov> wrote:
>> If we're going through all this trouble, isn't it better just to jump to .zip files like every other distribution format in existence?
> Yes. :-)

zip is popular for *user facing* distribution formats, where the file
format is exposed directly to end users, and end user applications
(e.g. zipimport, ODF).

That's not where tarballs shine, so it's not where they show up: tar
is a backend infrastructure format, used for tool-to-tool
communication, rather than user-to-user.

The trajectory of distutils-sig for the past few years has been
towards a world where sdists are primarily a tool-to-tool format for
data interchange between publishing tools (e.g. twine), installation
tools (e.g. pip) and redistribution tools (e.g. conda, RPM, deb,
buildout), with wheels (and potentially eggs, or an equally zipimport
friendly future derivative) being the preferred formats for working
directly with Python software in a destination environment (whether
that's a system integrator's build farm, a production software
deployment, or a Python user's local system).


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

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