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Multiple concurrent versions of Python

Hello y'all,

During the event "Solutions Linux" in Paris, I met a Zope developper who had
very good arguments on how Fedora could be improved to support more Python
applications (and Zope in particular).

Since Fedora is rather python-oriented, and we're considering Zope for our
CMS, I think we should consider this. I maintain the Zope & Plone packages
in Extras, and I must say it's complicated, because Zope requires specific
versions of python (not the latest) and Plone requires specific versions of
Zope :
- Latest Plone requires Zope 2.8.5
- Latest Zope is 2.9, which works with python 2.4.2, but zope 2.8.5 is
unsupported on python 2.4, it requires python 2.3.4

Since Fedora only ships python 2.4, there is no way for the Zope & Plone
packages to run on a supported python.

The solution discussed with the Zope dev would be to ship python 2.3.5.
There is a way to ship both versions, using the "alternatives" system (like
sendmail and postfix). The symlink would be on /usr/bin/python
and /usr/bin/python2.

The only problem is with python modules and python applications which
install files in /usr/lib/python2.4
 - python modules should be compiled for both versions of python ex:
python-imaging and python23-imaging
 - python applications installing files in /usr/lib/python2.4 should not
have #!/usr/bin/python in the shebang, but the required version :
#!/usr/bin/python2.4 and the package should require python24. The current
python rpm could Provide python24.

This is the way Debian does it, for example. And it works :)

Since installing concurrent versions of python is technically possible, do
you think this could be done in Fedora (of course, I'm not talking FC5
here) ?

What do you think ? Any corner cases ?

http://aurelien.bompard.org  ~~~~  Jabber : abompard jabber fr
"Programming today is a race between software engineers striving to build
bigger and better idiot-proof programs, and the Universe trying to produce
bigger and better idiots. So far, the Universe is winning." -- Rich Cook

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