[Python-Dev] Status of undocumented distutils features in 2.4?

Fred L. Drake, Jr. fdrake at acm.org
Thu Oct 7 03:40:34 CEST 2004

On Wednesday 06 October 2004 07:51 pm, Phillip J. Eby wrote:
 > I was looking up something in the distutils source today, and I noticed
 > that there are some new, undocumented, and not quite complete features
 > that were added earlier this year.  Specifically, the 'requires' and
 > 'provides' arguments to 'setup()', and the 'checkdep' command.

Anthony and I threw those together pretty quickly at PyCon; it's not clear 
that they're useful.  For Zope Corp., they won't be.  We've decided that we 
will not be adding __version__ assignments into the codebase, because there 
lies a stupid maintenance hassle.

I have no intention of documenting that stuff myself.

 > Should these be removed for 2.4?


 > It doesn't seem likely they'd be able to
 > be fleshed out before the beta, especially since as far as I can recall
 > they haven't been discussed on the Distutils-SIG yet, and some of the

Frankly, I have no confidence that we'll ever end up with an agreement on 
something that's sufficient and still easy to use.  Versioning simply isn't 
any easy aspect of packaging.

 > features don't seem to be in alignment with the relevant PEPs (e.g. PEP
 > 262's definition of "requires" and "provides").  And, the actual current
 > implementation of the dependency checking is (per the author's comments)
 > "kinda hacky".

You're being generous.  ;-)

It's unfortunate that PEP 262 was deferred, but that's what happens when no 
one has time to work on the beast.


Fred L. Drake, Jr.  <fdrake at acm.org>

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