[Python-Dev] Promoting Python 3 [was: PyPy 1.7 - widening the sweet spot]

Toshio Kuratomi a.badger at gmail.com
Tue Nov 22 18:13:58 CET 2011

On Wed, Nov 23, 2011 at 01:41:46AM +0900, Stephen J. Turnbull wrote:
> Barry Warsaw writes:
>  > Hopefully, we're going to be making a dent in that in the next version of
>  > Ubuntu.
> This is still a big mess in Gentoo and MacPorts, though.  MacPorts
> hasn't done anything about ceating a transition infrastructure AFAICT.
> Gentoo has its "eselect python set VERSION" stuff, but it's very
> dangerous to set to a Python 3 version, as many things go permanently
> wonky once you do.  (So far I've been able to work around problems
> this creates, but it's not much fun.)  I have no experience with this
> in Debian, Red Hat (and derivatives) or *BSD, but I have to suspect
> they're no better.  (Well, maybe Red Hat has learned from its 1.5.2
> experience! :-)
For Fedora (and currently, Red Hat is based on Fedora -- a little more about
that later, though), we have parallel python2 and python3 stacks.  As time
goes on we've slowly brought more python-3 compatible modules onto the
python3 stack (I believe someone had the goal a year and a half ago to get
a complete pylons web development stack running on python3 on Fedora which
brought a lot of packages forward).

Unlike Barry's work with Ubuntu, though, we're mostly chiselling around the
edges; we're working at the level where there's a module that someone needs
to run something (or run some optional features of something) that runs on

> I don't have any connections to the distros, so can't really offer to
> help directly.  I think it might be a good idea for users to lobby
> (politely!)  their distros to work on the transition.
Where distros aren't working on parallel stacks, there definitely needs to
be some transition plan.  With my experience with parallel stacks, the best
help there is to 1) help upstreams port to py3k (If someone can get PIL's
py3k support finished and into a released package, that would free up a few
things).  2) open bugs or help with creating python3 packages of modules
when the upstream support is there.

Depending on what software Barry's talking about porting to python3, that
could be a big incentive as well.  Just like with the push in Fedora to have
pylons run on python3, I think that having certain applications that run on
python3 and therefore need to have stacks of modules that support it is one
of the prime ways that distros become motivated to provide python3 packages
and support.  This is basically the "killer app" idea in a new venue :-)

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