[Linux-SIG] Introducing a Python launcher for *nix?

Nick Coghlan ncoghlan at gmail.com
Wed Oct 7 05:28:47 CEST 2015

The Python Launcher for Windows is a nice feature, but it's difficult
for folks that use Linux or Mac OS X themselves to recommend it, as
the "py" shorthand only works on Windows.

What do folks think of the idea of introducing a "Python Launcher for
*nix" using the following iterative development model:

1. We update the Python 3 *nix builds to provide a "py" symlink by
default. This would be the baseline state for Python 3.6 if the next
step isn't completed in time.

2. The symlink is replaced with a custom launcher that works like the
Python 3.5 version of the Windows launcher:

* accepts "-3", "-2", etc command line arguments like the Windows launcher
* checks for an active virtualenv, if it finds one, uses the venv's
default Python
* checks for a user specific config file
* checks for a global config file

(This could potentially be achieved by making the existing launcher
cross-platform, rather than having two independent launchers to


P.S. This list may not have enough subscribers yet to have a good
discussion, so I'll post another thread about advertising, and then we
can reboot this thread later if needed.

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

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