[Python-Dev] The end of 2.7

Maciej Fijalkowski fijall at gmail.com
Sun Apr 7 09:13:21 CEST 2013

On Sun, Apr 7, 2013 at 7:11 AM,  <martin at v.loewis.de> wrote:
> Quoting Benjamin Peterson <benjamin at python.org>:
>> This means we need to talk about how many more 2.7 releases there are
>> going to be. At the release of 2.7.0, I thought we promised 5 years of
>> bugfix maintenance, but my memory may be fuddled.
> I'd like to promote the idea to abandon 2.7 bug fix releases earlier
> than that, e.g. along with the release of 3.4. My recollection is
> that "we" didn't actually promise any specific time frame; I recall
> that Guido said that Python 2.7 would be supported "indefinitely",
> which is not "infinitely" [1]. The Whats New says [2]
> """It’s very likely the 2.7 release will have a longer period of
> maintenance compared to earlier 2.x versions."""
> which explicitly refuses to set a date. Of course, individual committers
> may have promised a more specific policy publicly in the past.
> Since Christian asked: I'll likely continue to make binary releases
> for Windows as along as Benjamin declares releases to be bug fix
> releases. However, it will become increasingly difficult for users
> to actually use these releases to build extension modules since
> Microsoft decided to take VS 2008 Express offline (VS 2008 remains
> available to MSDN subscribers; getting it from a store might
> also be difficult in 2014).
> I wonder whether the burden of maintaining three branches for bug
> fixes (2.7, 3.3, default) and three more for security fixes
> (2.6, 3.1, 3.2) is really sustainable for committers. I wouldn't
> want to back off wrt. security fixes, and 2.6 will soon fall out
> of the promised 5 years (after the initial release). However,
> stopping to accept bug fixes for 2.7 would IMO significantly reduce
> the load for committers - it would certainly continue to get
> security fixes, and (for the time being) "indefinitely" so.
> Wrt. to the 3.x migration rate: I think this is a self-fulfilling
> prophecy. Migration rate will certainly increase once we announce
> an end of 2.7, and then again when the end is actually reached.
> I'm doubtful with respect to a community-managed ongoing 2.7 bug
> fix release (i.e. I doubt that it will happen); the same was
> discussed for a next 2.x feature release, and it hasn't happened.
> OTOH, it is very likely that people will publish their own patches
> to 2.7 throughout the net, just as the Linux distributions already
> do. It may even happen that some volunteer offers to publish a
> combined repository for such patches, with various members of the
> community having write access to such a repository (but no formal
> releases coming out of that).

Martin, you guys are shooting yourself in a foot. Almost noone uses
python 3 in production, even at pycon, which is the more progressive
crowd. There is a giant group of people using python that are not as
vocal. While I bet some are using Python 3, Python 2 is incredibly
popular for the "long tail" of libraries and applications. How much is
2.7 a burden? There are no major changes and it's pretty cool to
consider it "done".

For what is worth, we'll maintain the stdlib part of 2.7 past 2 years.
It would be cool if python-dev participated in that.


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