[Python-Dev] Adventures with x64, VS7 and VS8 on Windows

Mark Hammond mhammond at skippinet.com.au
Mon May 21 14:33:27 CEST 2007

Hi Kristján,

> First of all, I have put some work into pcbuild8 recently and it works
> well.

It does!  There are a few issues though, notably with distutils (and as
mentioned before, any other tools what may assume PCBuild - see below)

You quoting Martin:
> > I don't find the need to have separate object directories 
> > convincing:
> > For building the Win32/Win64 binaries, I have separate checkouts
> > *anyway*, since all the add-on libraries would have to support
> > multi-arch builds, but I think they don't.
> No they don't, but that doesn't mean that you need different checkouts
> for python, only the others.  Anyway, this is indeed 
> something I'd like to see addressed.  I don't think we should ditch 
> cross-compilation.

While I agree with you, Martin's point about the dependant libraries and
tools is valid, and may defeat this goal.  In the short term, we should
research how some of these other projects are approaching x64 - we may also
find that this helps with any autoconf work we choose to do.  Ultimately,
the person releasing the official binaries gets to say how this works (based
on how they actually get it to work)

> > I would personally like to see Python "skip" VS 2005 altogether,
> > as it will be soon superceded by Orcas. Unfortunately, it's unclear
> > how long Microsoft will need to release Orcas (and also, when Python
> > 2.6 will be released), so I would like to defer that question by
> > a few months.
> I think this is a bit unrealistic.  Here we are in the middle of 2007,
> VS2005 has just got SP1, and VS2003 is still the "official" compiler.
> PCBuild8 is ready, it just needs a little bit of extra love and
> buildbots to make us able to release PGO versions of x86 and x64.
> Given the delay for getting even this far, waiting for Orcas and then
> someone to create PCBuild9, and then getting it up and 
> running and so on
> will mean waiting another two years.

I don't believe there was any suggestion that Python 2.6 would wait for a
compiler release from Microsoft.

Before we talk about Vista and while I have your attention <wink>, some
final questions relating to PCBuild8.  Regardless of the ultimate layout for
x64, what do you think about having PCBuid8 put the binaries into the
PCBuild directory, and thus (theoretically) letting such a directory work
with distutils and otherwise as a fully functional Python installation?

> I am not familiar with the msi packaging process at all.  But here is
> something we should start to consider:  VISTA support.  This 
> could mean
> some of:
> 1) supplying python.dll as a Side By Side assembly

Yes, this is something pywin32 is going to face.  The hack of copying
python*.dll into the 'system' directory - necessary for COM - is (sensibly!)
no longer working.  One thing at a time though...

> 2) Changing python install locations
> 3) Supporting shadow libraries, where .pyc files end up in a different
>    hierarchy from the .py files.  (useful for many things 
> beside VISTA)
> 4) Signing the python dlls and executables
> 5) Providing user level manifests.

And dragging distutils back op topic, having bdist_wininst supply a manifest
that indicates escalation is required appears necessary.

> Vista adoption is going very fast.  We see 10% of our users have moved
> to vista and rising.

ack - I'm yet to try a 32 bit version, but my Vista-x64 box isn't proving
very reliable yet.  It *is* very pretty and cute though :)  I'm surprised to
see 10% unless your users are skewed towards early-adopters though, but I'm
in no position to refute it!


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