[Python-ideas] PEP-582 and multiple Python versions

Brett Cannon brett at python.org
Mon Apr 1 14:27:19 EDT 2019

I just wanted to warn people that I don't know if any of the authors of PEP
582 subscribe to python-ideas and they have not brought it forward for
discussion yet, so there's no guarantee of a response.

On Mon, Apr 1, 2019 at 5:27 AM Calvin Spealman <cspealma at redhat.com> wrote:

> While the PEP does show the version number as part of the path to the
> actual packages, implying support for multiple versions, this doesn't seem
> to be spelled out in the actual text. Presumably __pypackages__/3.8/ might
> sit beside __pypackages__/3.9/, etc. to keep future versions capable of
> installing packages for each version, the way virtualenv today is bound to
> one version of Python.
> I'd like to raise a potential edge case that might be a problem, and
> likely an increasingly common one: users with multiple installations of the
> *same* version of Python. This is actually a common setup for Windows users
> who use WSL, Microsoft's Linux-on-Windows solution, as you could have both
> the Windows and Linux builds of a given Python version installed on the
> same machine. The currently implied support for multiple versions would not
> be able to separate these and could create problems if users pip install a
> Windows binary package through Powershell and then try to run a script in
> Bash from the same directory, causing the Linux version of Python to try to
> use Windows python packages.
> I'm not actually sure what the solution here is. Mostly I wanted to raise
> the concern, because I'm very keen on WSL being a great entry path for new
> developers and I want to make that a better experience, not a more
> confusing one. Maybe that version number could include some other unique
> identify, maybe based on Python's own executable. A hash maybe? I don't
> know if anything like that already exists to uniquely identify a Python
> build or installation.
> --
> cspealma at redhat.com  M: +1.336.210.5107
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