[Python-Dev] Status of C compilers for Python on Windows

R. David Murray rdmurray at bitdance.com
Sun Oct 26 00:23:06 CEST 2014

On Sat, 25 Oct 2014 21:10:23 +0100, Ray Donnelly <mingw.android at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Sat, Oct 25, 2014 at 6:13 PM, Steve Dower <Steve.Dower at microsoft.com> wrote:
> > (Apologies for the short reply, posting from my phone.)
> >
> > "MSVC can continue
> > to be the default compiler used for Python on Windows, none of Roumen's
> > patches change that. They would merely open up the choice for packagers and
> > users to build CPython (and extension modules, thanks to separate patches)
> > with alternate compilers, in cross-compilation or otherwise."
> >
> > Building CPython for Windows is not something that needs solving. The
> > culture on Windows is to redistribute binaries, not source, and both the
> > core team and a number of redistributors have this figured out (and it will
> > only become easier with VC14 and Python 3.5).
> This is the second time you've used the vacuous "culture on Windows"
> argument, now with an added appeal to (vague) authority. That may be
> your opinion and that of some others, but there's a large number of
> people who don't care for using non-Free tools. IMHO building CPython
> on Windows using Open Source toolchains is very much something that
> needs merging upstream and supporting by default. What is it that you
> are afraid of if CPython can be compiled out of the box using
> mingw/MinGW-w64? Why are you fighting so hard against having option.
> If CPython wants to truly call itself an Open Source project then I
> consider being able to compile and cross-compile it with capable Open
> Source toolchains on all major platforms a requirement.

You are doing yourself a disservice by this last statement.  There
really can't be any question that Python is an open source project,
so insinuating that the CPython community is "doing something wrong"
is not going to win you friends and helpers.

A better approach would be to acknowledge that what we are currently
doing works well for supporting Windows (especially since we actually
have some engagement from Microsoft that is *getting some problems
fixed* in ways that help make things more open).

And then say, "wouldn't it be *really cool* if we could also build
CPython using an open source toolchain on Windows out of the box?".  You
might not get instant agreement on that (well, clearly you won't), but
it'd be much more likely you'd start garnering support.

Assume that people are well intentioned, and convince them your
suggestions will make things *even better* using positive arguments.
You might not succeed, but you'll have a much better chance.


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