[Python-Dev] Continuing 2.x

Nick Coghlan ncoghlan at gmail.com
Thu Oct 28 15:33:51 CEST 2010

2010/10/28 Kristján Valur Jónsson <kristjan at ccpgames.com>:
> Hello all.
> So, python 2.7 is in bugfix only mode.  ‘trunk’ is off limit.  So, where
> does one make improvements to the distinguished, and still very much alive,
> 2.x series of Python?
> The answer would seem to be “one doesn’t”.  But must it be that way?

When python-dev chose to switch our own focus for new features to 3.x
only, we were quite aware that a new group forming to continue with
2.8 was a definite possibility. If you do decide to go ahead with the
idea, I have a few suggestions:

1. Since the distinguishing feature is that this branch is a 2.x
version that will accept new features, in contrast to the python-dev
maintained bugfix-only 2.7 maintenance branch, please call the branch
something-or-other-2.8, rather than any form of 2.7.
2. Check with Benjamin how he plans to handle 2.7 maintenance
releases. If he plans to release from SVN, use that as your upstream
master. If 2.7.1 will instead be released from hg.python.org, wait
until the switch happens then use the relevant hg branch as the
3. Choose your target audience early (if the target is only developers
with existing 2.x installations that can build their own version of
Python, then that simplifies release management significantly, since
you don't need to build binaries any more).
4. Decide whether or not you need a buildbot farm (this relates to
point 3: you may choose to limit your audience to people that are
happy to run the test suite themselves on their own target platforms
of interest).
5. Give some thought to how you will handle controversial design
decisions (since you won't have the fallback of appealing to the BDFL,
and feedback from python-dev is likely to be limited).
6. Asking for a python-org SIG mailing list may be a reasonable idea
as well (e.g. py2x-sig)
7. As 3.x usage grows, such a group may have a vested interest in
helping with 3to2 development as well as simplifying backporting of
3.x extension modules to 2.x.

A 2.8 branch that sells itself as being suitable only for people
willing to run their own builds and QA could definitely have a place
in the world (CCP at least would obviously find it useful, but I
wouldn't be surprised to find other companies that might consider
adopting such a branch if the benefits of the new features over the
official 2.7 releases were sufficiently compelling).

I don't believe anyone here is implacably opposed to the idea of 2.8
development continuing - it's just that the "collective we" of
python-dev isn't interested in making it happen, so a new crop of
developers will need to step up if it is going to become more than a
CCP-specific 2.x fork.


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

More information about the Python-Dev mailing list