Python Package Managment

David Cournapeau cournape at
Wed Jan 28 11:53:42 CET 2009

On Wed, Jan 28, 2009 at 3:16 PM, Bernard Rankin <berankin99 at> wrote:
> [extracted from pylons-discuss]
>> >> I hate to pass the buck, but this is Python's fault for not having
>> >> reliable package management built in.  There's nothing Pylons can do
>> >> about it except switch to another programming language.
>> > [SNIP]
>> Without Setuptools,
>> Pylons and TurboGears couldn't exist, and Zope and Twisted
>> would not have been able to split themselves into several packages.
>> People coming to Python from Perl and Ruby expect to be able to just
>> run a command to download and install a package.  That problem was
>> solved ten years ago, so why does Python still not have it standard?
>> If Setuptools and Virtualenv or the equivalent were built into Python,
>> you could trust that every computer that has successfully installed
>> Python can install packages and make virtual environments the same
>> way..
>> That would eliminate 2/3 of the problems users have when
>> installing Pylons, and the subsequent need to explain the problems and
>> workarounds in the installation docs.  At
>> work people say, "Half the trouble of Pylons is installing it", and I
>> often have to help them install it in person because otherwise they
>> get stuck at some error message and have no idea what to do.
> Agreed.  I would even move ipython (or something like it) to core.
> Of course, even Setuptools has a long way to go in some areas. (Installation Rollback, for one.)
> Python is about "batteries included", and these are major "batteries" in most modern environments.
> A CPAN like "in-house hosted" archive would nice, too.  This way, modules have a better chance of outliving the original author's interest/commitment in paying for, possibly non-trivial, web hosting.
> I'm sure these issues has been discussed to death, but I wonder what the larger Python community thinks.

You may be interested in the following:

The thread is two years and a half old, but my impression is that the
situation has not changeed much since. Few if any people are against
improving the situation, but more people are against the currently
available solutions (setuptools, virtualenv, etc...).



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