Build tool for Python

Paul Boddie paul at boddie.org.uk
Tue Jul 29 18:21:04 CEST 2008


On 29 Jul, 17:08, Hussein B <hubaghd... at gmail.com> wrote:
> Apache Ant is the de facto building tool for Java (whether JSE, JEE
> and JME) application.
> With Ant you can do what ever you want: compile, generate docs,
> generate code, packing, deploy, connecting to remote servers and every
> thing.
> Do we have such a tool for Python projects?

There are quite a few similar tools here:

http://wiki.python.org/moin/ConfigurationAndBuildTools

Having looked at a few such tools recently, I found myself considering
using plain old make for automating various non-compilation-related
activities, but then again, plain Python is actually very good for
automation if you get into the right mindset. Consequently, I've just
written a bunch of functions which run programs, test outputs and
potentially feed those outputs to other programs.

Where most of the available generic tools seem to frustrate is in
their support of the often necessary but complicated behaviour
required to minimise the amount of unnecessary work performed, through
frameworks which seem to obscure the nature of the work itself. I do
understand that it can be awkward to work out which object files need
recompiling due to changes in source files, for example, and that one
doesn't want to see the logic involved reproduced all over the place,
but I do wonder whether the machinery around such matters isn't
sometimes more complicated in these tools as soon as one strays
outside the common cases.

It seems to me that some common build-related primitives implemented
as functions combined with plain Python would be a good enough
combination for a lot of tasks in this domain.

Paul



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