ANN: ActivePython is now available

Sridhar Ratnakumar sridharr at
Wed Feb 23 01:28:35 CET 2011

ActiveState is pleased to announce ActivePython, a complete, 
ready-to-install binary distribution of Python 3.2.

What's New in ActivePython-

New Features & Upgrades

- First ActivePython release based on Python 3.2 core
- PyPM (beta) for Python 3.2
- Distribute (setuptools)
- [Windows] Upgrade to PyWin32 CVS snapshot as of 2011-01-16
- [MacOSX] ``readline`` support via Apple's ``libedit`` library
- OpenSSL 1.0.0d
- [Windows] Fix a ``tarfile`` performance issue (`issue11224 

What's new in Python 3.2

* Stable ABI: Extension modules built for 3.2 can continue to work with 
3.3, 3.4 and so on.

* argparse: argparse, an improved alternative to optparse included in 
Python 2.7, is now available in 3.2 as well.

* concurrent.futures: Inspired by java.util.concurrent.package, this 
module abstracts threads/processes/RPC-calls by way of abstract 
executors with support for status checks, timeouts, cancellations, 
callbacks, access to results or exceptions. futures makes it easier to 
switch from one concurrent implementation to another, eg: from thread to 
process pool.

* PYC repository directories: Ever faced with ".pyc conflicts" between 
multiple Python versions? Python 3.2 introduced a new bytecode caching 
mechanism: foo.pyc gets a new name: __pycache__/foo.cpython-32.pyc 
(similarly for .so files) ... thus properly fixing such conflicts, even 
across different Python interpreter implementations.

* WSGI for Python 3: The WSGI spec is now adapted for Python3's 
bytes/text distinction. See PEP 3333 for details.

For the complete list of changes, see

What is ActivePython?

ActivePython is ActiveState's binary distribution of Python. Builds for 
Windows, Mac OS X, Linux are made freely available. Solaris, HP-UX and 
AIX builds, and access to older versions are available in ActivePython 
Business, Enterprise and OEM editions:

ActivePython includes the Python core and the many core extensions: zlib 
and bzip2 for data compression, the Berkeley DB (bsddb) and SQLite 
(sqlite3) database libraries, OpenSSL bindings for HTTPS support, the 
Tix GUI widgets for Tkinter, ElementTree for XML processing, ctypes (on 
supported platforms) for low-level library access, and others. The 
Windows distribution ships with PyWin32 -- a suite of Windows tools 
developed by Mark Hammond, including bindings to the Win32 API and 
Windows COM.

ActivePython also includes a binary package manager for Python (PyPM) 
that can be used to install packages much easily. For example:

   C:\>pypm install numpy

 >>> import numpy.linalg

PyPM module availability for 3.2 can be seen at:

See this page for full details:

As well, ActivePython ships with a wealth of documentation for both new 
and experienced Python programmers. In addition to the core Python docs, 
ActivePython includes the "What's New in Python" series, "Dive into 
Python", the Python FAQs & HOWTOs, and the Python Enhancement Proposals 

An online version of the docs can be found here:

We would welcome any and all feedback to:

   activepython-feedback at

Please file bugs against ActivePython at:

Supported Platforms

ActivePython is available for the following platforms:

- Windows (x86 and x64)
- Mac OS X (x86 and x86_64; 10.5+)
- Linux (x86 and x86_64)

- Solaris/SPARC (32-bit and 64-bit) (Business, Enterprise or OEM edition 
- Solaris/x86 (32-bit) (Business, Enterprise or OEM edition only)
- HP-UX/PA-RISC (32-bit) (Business, Enterprise or OEM edition only)
- HP-UX/IA-64 (32-bit and 64-bit) (Enterprise or OEM edition only)
- AIX/PowerPC (32-bit and 64-bit) (Business, Enterprise or OEM edition only)

More information about the Business Edition can be found here:

Custom builds are available in the Enterprise Edition:

Thanks, and enjoy!

The Python Team

Sridhar Ratnakumar
sridharr at

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