[Python-Dev] Support the /usr/bin/python2 symlink upstream

Toshio Kuratomi a.badger at gmail.com
Fri Mar 4 21:00:43 CET 2011

On Fri, Mar 04, 2011 at 01:56:39PM -0500, Barry Warsaw wrote:
> I don't agree that /usr/bin/python should not be installed.  The draft PEP
> language hits the right tone IMHO, and I would favor /usr/bin/python pointing
> to /usr/bin/python2 on Debian, but primarily used only for the interactive
> interpreter.
> Or IOW, I still want users to be able to type 'python' at a shell prompt and
> get the interpreter.
Actually, my post was saying that these two can be decoupled.  ie: It's
possible to not have /usr/bin/python while still allowing users to type
python at a shell prompt and get the interpreter.

This is done by either redefining the PATH to include the directory that the
interpreter named "python" is in or by creating an alias for python to the
proper interpreter.

Using the environment-modules tools is one solution that operated in this
way.  It also, incidentally, would let each user of a system choose whether
python invoked python2 or python3 (and on Debian, which sub-version of
those).  A more hardcoded approach is to have the python package drop some
configuration into /etc/profile.d/ style directories where the distribution
places files that are run by default by the user's shell with the default
startup files.

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