[RFC] depend on testtools for testing?

Robert Collins robertc at robertcollins.net
Thu Oct 29 22:33:18 GMT 2009

On Thu, 2009-10-29 at 17:08 -0400, Francis J. Lacoste wrote:

> buildout is a great tool to manage such dependencies automatically. Both 
> Launchpad and Lanscape are now using it. It's great for development, but it 
> won't solve the additional complexity in packaging. (bzr requires testtools < 
> 0.5, but the system .deb has 0.6 and you can't install both in parallel.)

I've been mulling on this sort of thing for a while; I'm coming to the
conclusion that buildout - like config-manager, which is its moral
equivalent but using VCS rather than eggs - is an adaptation that should
be avoided. Its better to build a deb of the needed dependency and
install it.

Then when you have conflicting library requirements there are a number
of ways to address it:
 - use a chroot
 - fix the project to use a newer library version
 - fix the packaging to support older libraries being coinstalled (which
eggs can support I believe, but the python packaging rules on Ubuntu
don't [yet]). The C library rules *do* support multiple sonames being
installed, so there is prior art on what the packaging system needs to

Using packages is desirable because it leverages the [significant]
investment made in producting things on Ubuntu rather than creating a
new environment with its own [significant - I've been watching :)]

Sadly MacOSX, Sand Windows don't have quite so polished packaging
systems - but we're quite a ways up the learning curve for making
installers for MacOSX and Windows :)

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