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Ali Afshar  committed 1ec91e0

Imported distutils docs from python source at REV 79621.

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File docs/source/apiref.rst

+.. _api-reference:
+
+*************
+API Reference
+*************
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.core` --- Core Distutils functionality
+======================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.core
+   :synopsis: The core Distutils functionality
+
+
+The :mod:`distutils.core` module is the only module that needs to be installed
+to use the Distutils. It provides the :func:`setup` (which is called from the
+setup script). Indirectly provides the  :class:`distutils.dist.Distribution` and
+:class:`distutils.cmd.Command` class.
+
+
+.. function:: setup(arguments)
+
+   The basic do-everything function that does most everything you could ever ask
+   for from a Distutils method. See XXXXX
+
+   The setup function takes a large number of arguments. These are laid out in the
+   following table.
+
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | argument name      | value                          | type                                                        |
+   +====================+================================+=============================================================+
+   | *name*             | The name of the package        | a string                                                    |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *version*          | The version number of the      | See :mod:`distutils.version`                                |
+   |                    | package                        |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *description*      | A single line describing the   | a string                                                    |
+   |                    | package                        |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *long_description* | Longer description of the      | a string                                                    |
+   |                    | package                        |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *author*           | The name of the package author | a string                                                    |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *author_email*     | The email address of the       | a string                                                    |
+   |                    | package author                 |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *maintainer*       | The name of the current        | a string                                                    |
+   |                    | maintainer, if different from  |                                                             |
+   |                    | the author                     |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *maintainer_email* | The email address of the       |                                                             |
+   |                    | current maintainer, if         |                                                             |
+   |                    | different from the author      |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *url*              | A URL for the package          | a URL                                                       |
+   |                    | (homepage)                     |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *download_url*     | A URL to download the package  | a URL                                                       |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *packages*         | A list of Python packages that | a list of strings                                           |
+   |                    | distutils will manipulate      |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *py_modules*       | A list of Python modules that  | a list of strings                                           |
+   |                    | distutils will manipulate      |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *scripts*          | A list of standalone script    | a list of strings                                           |
+   |                    | files to be built and          |                                                             |
+   |                    | installed                      |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *ext_modules*      | A list of Python extensions to | A list of  instances of                                     |
+   |                    | be built                       | :class:`distutils.core.Extension`                           |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *classifiers*      | A list of categories for the   | The list of available                                       |
+   |                    | package                        | categorizations is at                                       |
+   |                    |                                | http://pypi.python.org/pypi?:action=list_classifiers.       |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *distclass*        | the :class:`Distribution`      | A subclass of                                               |
+   |                    | class to use                   | :class:`distutils.core.Distribution`                        |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *script_name*      | The name of the setup.py       | a string                                                    |
+   |                    | script - defaults to           |                                                             |
+   |                    | ``sys.argv[0]``                |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *script_args*      | Arguments to supply to the     | a list of strings                                           |
+   |                    | setup script                   |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *options*          | default options for the setup  | a string                                                    |
+   |                    | script                         |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *license*          | The license for the package    | a string                                                    |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *keywords*         | Descriptive meta-data, see     |                                                             |
+   |                    | :pep:`314`                     |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *platforms*        |                                |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *cmdclass*         | A mapping of command names to  | a dictionary                                                |
+   |                    | :class:`Command` subclasses    |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *data_files*       | A list of data files to        | a list                                                      |
+   |                    | install                        |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+   | *package_dir*      | A mapping of package to        | a dictionary                                                |
+   |                    | directory names                |                                                             |
+   +--------------------+--------------------------------+-------------------------------------------------------------+
+
+
+
+.. function:: run_setup(script_name[, script_args=None, stop_after='run'])
+
+   Run a setup script in a somewhat controlled environment, and return  the
+   :class:`distutils.dist.Distribution` instance that drives things.   This is
+   useful if you need to find out the distribution meta-data  (passed as keyword
+   args from *script* to :func:`setup`), or  the contents of the config files or
+   command-line.
+
+   *script_name* is a file that will be run with :func:`execfile` ``sys.argv[0]``
+   will be replaced with *script* for the duration of the call.  *script_args* is a
+   list of strings; if supplied, ``sys.argv[1:]`` will be replaced by *script_args*
+   for the duration  of the call.
+
+   *stop_after* tells :func:`setup` when to stop processing; possible  values:
+
+   +---------------+---------------------------------------------+
+   | value         | description                                 |
+   +===============+=============================================+
+   | *init*        | Stop after the :class:`Distribution`        |
+   |               | instance has been created  and populated    |
+   |               | with the keyword arguments to :func:`setup` |
+   +---------------+---------------------------------------------+
+   | *config*      | Stop after config files have been parsed    |
+   |               | (and their data stored in the               |
+   |               | :class:`Distribution` instance)             |
+   +---------------+---------------------------------------------+
+   | *commandline* | Stop after the command-line                 |
+   |               | (``sys.argv[1:]`` or  *script_args*) have   |
+   |               | been parsed (and the data stored in the     |
+   |               | :class:`Distribution` instance.)            |
+   +---------------+---------------------------------------------+
+   | *run*         | Stop after all commands have been run (the  |
+   |               | same as  if :func:`setup` had been called   |
+   |               | in the usual way). This is the default      |
+   |               | value.                                      |
+   +---------------+---------------------------------------------+
+
+In addition, the :mod:`distutils.core` module exposed a number of  classes that
+live elsewhere.
+
+* :class:`Extension` from :mod:`distutils.extension`
+
+* :class:`Command` from :mod:`distutils.cmd`
+
+* :class:`Distribution` from :mod:`distutils.dist`
+
+A short description of each of these follows, but see the relevant module for
+the full reference.
+
+
+.. class:: Extension
+
+   The Extension class describes a single C or C++extension module in a setup
+   script. It accepts the following keyword arguments in its constructor
+
+   +------------------------+--------------------------------+---------------------------+
+   | argument name          | value                          | type                      |
+   +========================+================================+===========================+
+   | *name*                 | the full name of the           | string                    |
+   |                        | extension, including any       |                           |
+   |                        | packages --- ie. *not* a       |                           |
+   |                        | filename or pathname, but      |                           |
+   |                        | Python dotted name             |                           |
+   +------------------------+--------------------------------+---------------------------+
+   | *sources*              | list of source filenames,      | string                    |
+   |                        | relative to the distribution   |                           |
+   |                        | root (where the setup script   |                           |
+   |                        | lives), in Unix form (slash-   |                           |
+   |                        | separated) for portability.    |                           |
+   |                        | Source files may be C, C++,    |                           |
+   |                        | SWIG (.i), platform-specific   |                           |
+   |                        | resource files, or whatever    |                           |
+   |                        | else is recognized by the      |                           |
+   |                        | :command:`build_ext` command   |                           |
+   |                        | as source for a Python         |                           |
+   |                        | extension.                     |                           |
+   +------------------------+--------------------------------+---------------------------+
+   | *include_dirs*         | list of directories to search  | string                    |
+   |                        | for C/C++ header files (in     |                           |
+   |                        | Unix form for portability)     |                           |
+   +------------------------+--------------------------------+---------------------------+
+   | *define_macros*        | list of macros to define; each | (string, string) tuple or |
+   |                        | macro is defined using a       | (name, ``None``)          |
+   |                        | 2-tuple ``(name, value)``,     |                           |
+   |                        | where *value* is               |                           |
+   |                        | either the string to define it |                           |
+   |                        | to or ``None`` to define it    |                           |
+   |                        | without a particular value     |                           |
+   |                        | (equivalent of ``#define FOO`` |                           |
+   |                        | in source or :option:`-DFOO`   |                           |
+   |                        | on Unix C compiler command     |                           |
+   |                        | line)                          |                           |
+   +------------------------+--------------------------------+---------------------------+
+   | *undef_macros*         | list of macros to undefine     | string                    |
+   |                        | explicitly                     |                           |
+   +------------------------+--------------------------------+---------------------------+
+   | *library_dirs*         | list of directories to search  | string                    |
+   |                        | for C/C++ libraries at link    |                           |
+   |                        | time                           |                           |
+   +------------------------+--------------------------------+---------------------------+
+   | *libraries*            | list of library names (not     | string                    |
+   |                        | filenames or paths) to link    |                           |
+   |                        | against                        |                           |
+   +------------------------+--------------------------------+---------------------------+
+   | *runtime_library_dirs* | list of directories to search  | string                    |
+   |                        | for C/C++ libraries at run     |                           |
+   |                        | time (for shared extensions,   |                           |
+   |                        | this is when the extension is  |                           |
+   |                        | loaded)                        |                           |
+   +------------------------+--------------------------------+---------------------------+
+   | *extra_objects*        | list of extra files to link    | string                    |
+   |                        | with (eg. object files not     |                           |
+   |                        | implied by 'sources', static   |                           |
+   |                        | library that must be           |                           |
+   |                        | explicitly specified, binary   |                           |
+   |                        | resource files, etc.)          |                           |
+   +------------------------+--------------------------------+---------------------------+
+   | *extra_compile_args*   | any extra platform- and        | string                    |
+   |                        | compiler-specific information  |                           |
+   |                        | to use when compiling the      |                           |
+   |                        | source files in 'sources'. For |                           |
+   |                        | platforms and compilers where  |                           |
+   |                        | a command line makes sense,    |                           |
+   |                        | this is typically a list of    |                           |
+   |                        | command-line arguments, but    |                           |
+   |                        | for other platforms it could   |                           |
+   |                        | be anything.                   |                           |
+   +------------------------+--------------------------------+---------------------------+
+   | *extra_link_args*      | any extra platform- and        | string                    |
+   |                        | compiler-specific information  |                           |
+   |                        | to use when linking object     |                           |
+   |                        | files together to create the   |                           |
+   |                        | extension (or to create a new  |                           |
+   |                        | static Python interpreter).    |                           |
+   |                        | Similar interpretation as for  |                           |
+   |                        | 'extra_compile_args'.          |                           |
+   +------------------------+--------------------------------+---------------------------+
+   | *export_symbols*       | list of symbols to be exported | string                    |
+   |                        | from a shared extension. Not   |                           |
+   |                        | used on all platforms, and not |                           |
+   |                        | generally necessary for Python |                           |
+   |                        | extensions, which typically    |                           |
+   |                        | export exactly one symbol:     |                           |
+   |                        | ``init`` + extension_name.     |                           |
+   +------------------------+--------------------------------+---------------------------+
+   | *depends*              | list of files that the         | string                    |
+   |                        | extension depends on           |                           |
+   +------------------------+--------------------------------+---------------------------+
+   | *language*             | extension language (i.e.       | string                    |
+   |                        | ``'c'``, ``'c++'``,            |                           |
+   |                        | ``'objc'``). Will be detected  |                           |
+   |                        | from the source extensions if  |                           |
+   |                        | not provided.                  |                           |
+   +------------------------+--------------------------------+---------------------------+
+
+
+.. class:: Distribution
+
+   A :class:`Distribution` describes how to build, install and package up a Python
+   software package.
+
+   See the :func:`setup` function for a list of keyword arguments accepted  by the
+   Distribution constructor. :func:`setup` creates a Distribution instance.
+
+
+.. class:: Command
+
+   A :class:`Command` class (or rather, an instance of one of its subclasses)
+   implement a single distutils command.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.ccompiler` --- CCompiler base class
+===================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.ccompiler
+   :synopsis: Abstract CCompiler class
+
+
+This module provides the abstract base class for the :class:`CCompiler`
+classes.  A :class:`CCompiler` instance can be used for all the compile  and
+link steps needed to build a single project. Methods are provided to  set
+options for the compiler --- macro definitions, include directories,  link path,
+libraries and the like.
+
+This module provides the following functions.
+
+
+.. function:: gen_lib_options(compiler, library_dirs, runtime_library_dirs, libraries)
+
+   Generate linker options for searching library directories and linking with
+   specific libraries.  *libraries* and *library_dirs* are, respectively, lists of
+   library names (not filenames!) and search directories.  Returns a list of
+   command-line options suitable for use with some compiler (depending on the two
+   format strings passed in).
+
+
+.. function:: gen_preprocess_options(macros, include_dirs)
+
+   Generate C pre-processor options (:option:`-D`, :option:`-U`, :option:`-I`) as
+   used by at least two types of compilers: the typical Unix compiler and Visual
+   C++. *macros* is the usual thing, a list of 1- or 2-tuples, where ``(name,)``
+   means undefine (:option:`-U`) macro *name*, and ``(name, value)`` means define
+   (:option:`-D`) macro *name* to *value*.  *include_dirs* is just a list of
+   directory names to be added to the header file search path (:option:`-I`).
+   Returns a list of command-line options suitable for either Unix compilers or
+   Visual C++.
+
+
+.. function:: get_default_compiler(osname, platform)
+
+   Determine the default compiler to use for the given platform.
+
+   *osname* should be one of the standard Python OS names (i.e. the ones returned
+   by ``os.name``) and *platform* the common value returned by ``sys.platform`` for
+   the platform in question.
+
+   The default values are ``os.name`` and ``sys.platform`` in case the parameters
+   are not given.
+
+
+.. function:: new_compiler(plat=None, compiler=None, verbose=0, dry_run=0, force=0)
+
+   Factory function to generate an instance of some CCompiler subclass for the
+   supplied platform/compiler combination. *plat* defaults to ``os.name`` (eg.
+   ``'posix'``, ``'nt'``), and *compiler*  defaults to the default compiler for
+   that platform. Currently only ``'posix'`` and ``'nt'`` are supported, and the
+   default compilers are "traditional Unix interface" (:class:`UnixCCompiler`
+   class) and Visual C++ (:class:`MSVCCompiler` class).  Note that it's perfectly
+   possible to ask for a Unix compiler object under Windows, and a Microsoft
+   compiler object under Unix---if you supply a value for *compiler*, *plat* is
+   ignored.
+
+   .. % Is the posix/nt only thing still true? Mac OS X seems to work, and
+   .. % returns a UnixCCompiler instance. How to document this... hmm.
+
+
+.. function:: show_compilers()
+
+   Print list of available compilers (used by the :option:`--help-compiler` options
+   to :command:`build`, :command:`build_ext`, :command:`build_clib`).
+
+
+.. class:: CCompiler([verbose=0, dry_run=0, force=0])
+
+   The abstract base class :class:`CCompiler` defines the interface that  must be
+   implemented by real compiler classes.  The class also has  some utility methods
+   used by several compiler classes.
+
+   The basic idea behind a compiler abstraction class is that each instance can be
+   used for all the compile/link steps in building a single project.  Thus,
+   attributes common to all of those compile and link steps --- include
+   directories, macros to define, libraries to link against, etc. --- are
+   attributes of the compiler instance.  To allow for variability in how individual
+   files are treated, most of those attributes may be varied on a per-compilation
+   or per-link basis.
+
+   The constructor for each subclass creates an instance of the Compiler object.
+   Flags are *verbose* (show verbose output), *dry_run* (don't actually execute the
+   steps) and *force* (rebuild everything, regardless of dependencies). All of
+   these flags default to ``0`` (off). Note that you probably don't want to
+   instantiate :class:`CCompiler` or one of its subclasses directly - use the
+   :func:`distutils.CCompiler.new_compiler` factory function instead.
+
+   The following methods allow you to manually alter compiler options for  the
+   instance of the Compiler class.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.add_include_dir(dir)
+
+      Add *dir* to the list of directories that will be searched for header files.
+      The compiler is instructed to search directories in the order in which they are
+      supplied by successive calls to :meth:`add_include_dir`.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.set_include_dirs(dirs)
+
+      Set the list of directories that will be searched to *dirs* (a list of strings).
+      Overrides any preceding calls to :meth:`add_include_dir`; subsequent calls to
+      :meth:`add_include_dir` add to the list passed to :meth:`set_include_dirs`.
+      This does not affect any list of standard include directories that the compiler
+      may search by default.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.add_library(libname)
+
+      Add *libname* to the list of libraries that will be included in all links driven
+      by this compiler object.  Note that *libname* should \*not\* be the name of a
+      file containing a library, but the name of the library itself: the actual
+      filename will be inferred by the linker, the compiler, or the compiler class
+      (depending on the platform).
+
+      The linker will be instructed to link against libraries in the order they were
+      supplied to :meth:`add_library` and/or :meth:`set_libraries`.  It is perfectly
+      valid to duplicate library names; the linker will be instructed to link against
+      libraries as many times as they are mentioned.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.set_libraries(libnames)
+
+      Set the list of libraries to be included in all links driven by this compiler
+      object to *libnames* (a list of strings).  This does not affect any standard
+      system libraries that the linker may include by default.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.add_library_dir(dir)
+
+      Add *dir* to the list of directories that will be searched for libraries
+      specified to :meth:`add_library` and :meth:`set_libraries`.  The linker will be
+      instructed to search for libraries in the order they are supplied to
+      :meth:`add_library_dir` and/or :meth:`set_library_dirs`.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.set_library_dirs(dirs)
+
+      Set the list of library search directories to *dirs* (a list of strings).  This
+      does not affect any standard library search path that the linker may search by
+      default.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.add_runtime_library_dir(dir)
+
+      Add *dir* to the list of directories that will be searched for shared libraries
+      at runtime.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.set_runtime_library_dirs(dirs)
+
+      Set the list of directories to search for shared libraries at runtime to *dirs*
+      (a list of strings).  This does not affect any standard search path that the
+      runtime linker may search by default.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.define_macro(name[, value=None])
+
+      Define a preprocessor macro for all compilations driven by this compiler object.
+      The optional parameter *value* should be a string; if it is not supplied, then
+      the macro will be defined without an explicit value and the exact outcome
+      depends on the compiler used (XXX true? does ANSI say anything about this?)
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.undefine_macro(name)
+
+      Undefine a preprocessor macro for all compilations driven by this compiler
+      object.  If the same macro is defined by :meth:`define_macro` and
+      undefined by :meth:`undefine_macro` the last call takes precedence
+      (including multiple redefinitions or undefinitions).  If the macro is
+      redefined/undefined on a per-compilation basis (ie. in the call to
+      :meth:`compile`), then that takes precedence.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.add_link_object(object)
+
+      Add *object* to the list of object files (or analogues, such as explicitly named
+      library files or the output of "resource compilers") to be included in every
+      link driven by this compiler object.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.set_link_objects(objects)
+
+      Set the list of object files (or analogues) to be included in every link to
+      *objects*.  This does not affect any standard object files that the linker may
+      include by default (such as system libraries).
+
+   The following methods implement methods for autodetection of compiler  options,
+   providing some functionality similar to GNU :program:`autoconf`.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.detect_language(sources)
+
+      Detect the language of a given file, or list of files. Uses the  instance
+      attributes :attr:`language_map` (a dictionary), and  :attr:`language_order` (a
+      list) to do the job.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.find_library_file(dirs, lib[, debug=0])
+
+      Search the specified list of directories for a static or shared library file
+      *lib* and return the full path to that file.  If *debug* is true, look for a
+      debugging version (if that makes sense on the current platform).  Return
+      ``None`` if *lib* wasn't found in any of the specified directories.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.has_function(funcname [, includes=None, include_dirs=None, libraries=None, library_dirs=None])
+
+      Return a boolean indicating whether *funcname* is supported on the current
+      platform.  The optional arguments can be used to augment the compilation
+      environment by providing additional include files and paths and libraries and
+      paths.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.library_dir_option(dir)
+
+      Return the compiler option to add *dir* to the list of directories searched for
+      libraries.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.library_option(lib)
+
+      Return the compiler option to add *dir* to the list of libraries linked into the
+      shared library or executable.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.runtime_library_dir_option(dir)
+
+      Return the compiler option to add *dir* to the list of directories searched for
+      runtime libraries.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.set_executables(**args)
+
+      Define the executables (and options for them) that will be run to perform the
+      various stages of compilation.  The exact set of executables that may be
+      specified here depends on the compiler class (via the 'executables' class
+      attribute), but most will have:
+
+      +--------------+------------------------------------------+
+      | attribute    | description                              |
+      +==============+==========================================+
+      | *compiler*   | the C/C++ compiler                       |
+      +--------------+------------------------------------------+
+      | *linker_so*  | linker used to create shared objects and |
+      |              | libraries                                |
+      +--------------+------------------------------------------+
+      | *linker_exe* | linker used to create binary executables |
+      +--------------+------------------------------------------+
+      | *archiver*   | static library creator                   |
+      +--------------+------------------------------------------+
+
+      On platforms with a command-line (Unix, DOS/Windows), each of these is a string
+      that will be split into executable name and (optional) list of arguments.
+      (Splitting the string is done similarly to how Unix shells operate: words are
+      delimited by spaces, but quotes and backslashes can override this.  See
+      :func:`distutils.util.split_quoted`.)
+
+   The following methods invoke stages in the build process.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.compile(sources[, output_dir=None, macros=None, include_dirs=None, debug=0, extra_preargs=None, extra_postargs=None, depends=None])
+
+      Compile one or more source files. Generates object files (e.g.  transforms a
+      :file:`.c` file to a :file:`.o` file.)
+
+      *sources* must be a list of filenames, most likely C/C++ files, but in reality
+      anything that can be handled by a particular compiler and compiler class (eg.
+      :class:`MSVCCompiler` can handle resource files in *sources*).  Return a list of
+      object filenames, one per source filename in *sources*.  Depending on the
+      implementation, not all source files will necessarily be compiled, but all
+      corresponding object filenames will be returned.
+
+      If *output_dir* is given, object files will be put under it, while retaining
+      their original path component.  That is, :file:`foo/bar.c` normally compiles to
+      :file:`foo/bar.o` (for a Unix implementation); if *output_dir* is *build*, then
+      it would compile to :file:`build/foo/bar.o`.
+
+      *macros*, if given, must be a list of macro definitions.  A macro definition is
+      either a ``(name, value)`` 2-tuple or a ``(name,)`` 1-tuple. The former defines
+      a macro; if the value is ``None``, the macro is defined without an explicit
+      value.  The 1-tuple case undefines a macro.  Later
+      definitions/redefinitions/undefinitions take precedence.
+
+      *include_dirs*, if given, must be a list of strings, the directories to add to
+      the default include file search path for this compilation only.
+
+      *debug* is a boolean; if true, the compiler will be instructed to output debug
+      symbols in (or alongside) the object file(s).
+
+      *extra_preargs* and *extra_postargs* are implementation-dependent. On platforms
+      that have the notion of a command-line (e.g. Unix, DOS/Windows), they are most
+      likely lists of strings: extra command-line arguments to prepend/append to the
+      compiler command line.  On other platforms, consult the implementation class
+      documentation.  In any event, they are intended as an escape hatch for those
+      occasions when the abstract compiler framework doesn't cut the mustard.
+
+      *depends*, if given, is a list of filenames that all targets depend on.  If a
+      source file is older than any file in depends, then the source file will be
+      recompiled.  This supports dependency tracking, but only at a coarse
+      granularity.
+
+      Raises :exc:`CompileError` on failure.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.create_static_lib(objects, output_libname[, output_dir=None, debug=0, target_lang=None])
+
+      Link a bunch of stuff together to create a static library file. The "bunch of
+      stuff" consists of the list of object files supplied as *objects*, the extra
+      object files supplied to :meth:`add_link_object` and/or
+      :meth:`set_link_objects`, the libraries supplied to :meth:`add_library` and/or
+      :meth:`set_libraries`, and the libraries supplied as *libraries* (if any).
+
+      *output_libname* should be a library name, not a filename; the filename will be
+      inferred from the library name.  *output_dir* is the directory where the library
+      file will be put. XXX defaults to what?
+
+      *debug* is a boolean; if true, debugging information will be included in the
+      library (note that on most platforms, it is the compile step where this matters:
+      the *debug* flag is included here just for consistency).
+
+      *target_lang* is the target language for which the given objects are being
+      compiled. This allows specific linkage time treatment of certain languages.
+
+      Raises :exc:`LibError` on failure.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.link(target_desc, objects, output_filename[, output_dir=None, libraries=None, library_dirs=None, runtime_library_dirs=None, export_symbols=None, debug=0, extra_preargs=None, extra_postargs=None, build_temp=None, target_lang=None])
+
+      Link a bunch of stuff together to create an executable or shared library file.
+
+      The "bunch of stuff" consists of the list of object files supplied as *objects*.
+      *output_filename* should be a filename.  If *output_dir* is supplied,
+      *output_filename* is relative to it (i.e. *output_filename* can provide
+      directory components if needed).
+
+      *libraries* is a list of libraries to link against.  These are library names,
+      not filenames, since they're translated into filenames in a platform-specific
+      way (eg. *foo* becomes :file:`libfoo.a` on Unix and :file:`foo.lib` on
+      DOS/Windows).  However, they can include a directory component, which means the
+      linker will look in that specific directory rather than searching all the normal
+      locations.
+
+      *library_dirs*, if supplied, should be a list of directories to search for
+      libraries that were specified as bare library names (ie. no directory
+      component).  These are on top of the system default and those supplied to
+      :meth:`add_library_dir` and/or :meth:`set_library_dirs`.  *runtime_library_dirs*
+      is a list of directories that will be embedded into the shared library and used
+      to search for other shared libraries that \*it\* depends on at run-time.  (This
+      may only be relevant on Unix.)
+
+      *export_symbols* is a list of symbols that the shared library will export.
+      (This appears to be relevant only on Windows.)
+
+      *debug* is as for :meth:`compile` and :meth:`create_static_lib`,  with the
+      slight distinction that it actually matters on most platforms (as opposed to
+      :meth:`create_static_lib`, which includes a *debug* flag mostly for form's
+      sake).
+
+      *extra_preargs* and *extra_postargs* are as for :meth:`compile`  (except of
+      course that they supply command-line arguments for the particular linker being
+      used).
+
+      *target_lang* is the target language for which the given objects are being
+      compiled. This allows specific linkage time treatment of certain languages.
+
+      Raises :exc:`LinkError` on failure.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.link_executable(objects, output_progname[, output_dir=None, libraries=None, library_dirs=None, runtime_library_dirs=None, debug=0, extra_preargs=None, extra_postargs=None, target_lang=None])
+
+      Link an executable.  *output_progname* is the name of the file executable, while
+      *objects* are a list of object filenames to link in. Other arguments  are as for
+      the :meth:`link` method.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.link_shared_lib(objects, output_libname[, output_dir=None, libraries=None, library_dirs=None, runtime_library_dirs=None, export_symbols=None, debug=0, extra_preargs=None, extra_postargs=None, build_temp=None, target_lang=None])
+
+      Link a shared library. *output_libname* is the name of the output  library,
+      while *objects* is a list of object filenames to link in.  Other arguments are
+      as for the :meth:`link` method.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.link_shared_object(objects, output_filename[, output_dir=None, libraries=None, library_dirs=None, runtime_library_dirs=None, export_symbols=None, debug=0, extra_preargs=None, extra_postargs=None, build_temp=None, target_lang=None])
+
+      Link a shared object. *output_filename* is the name of the shared object that
+      will be created, while *objects* is a list of object filenames  to link in.
+      Other arguments are as for the :meth:`link` method.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.preprocess(source[, output_file=None, macros=None, include_dirs=None, extra_preargs=None, extra_postargs=None])
+
+      Preprocess a single C/C++ source file, named in *source*. Output will be written
+      to file named *output_file*, or *stdout* if *output_file* not supplied.
+      *macros* is a list of macro definitions as for :meth:`compile`, which will
+      augment the macros set with :meth:`define_macro` and :meth:`undefine_macro`.
+      *include_dirs* is a list of directory names that will be added to the  default
+      list, in the same way as :meth:`add_include_dir`.
+
+      Raises :exc:`PreprocessError` on failure.
+
+   The following utility methods are defined by the :class:`CCompiler` class, for
+   use by the various concrete subclasses.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.executable_filename(basename[, strip_dir=0, output_dir=''])
+
+      Returns the filename of the executable for the given *basename*.  Typically for
+      non-Windows platforms this is the same as the basename,  while Windows will get
+      a :file:`.exe` added.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.library_filename(libname[, lib_type='static', strip_dir=0, output_dir=''])
+
+      Returns the filename for the given library name on the current platform. On Unix
+      a library with *lib_type* of ``'static'`` will typically  be of the form
+      :file:`liblibname.a`, while a *lib_type* of ``'dynamic'``  will be of the form
+      :file:`liblibname.so`.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.object_filenames(source_filenames[, strip_dir=0, output_dir=''])
+
+      Returns the name of the object files for the given source files.
+      *source_filenames* should be a list of filenames.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.shared_object_filename(basename[, strip_dir=0, output_dir=''])
+
+      Returns the name of a shared object file for the given file name *basename*.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.execute(func, args[, msg=None, level=1])
+
+      Invokes :func:`distutils.util.execute` This method invokes a  Python function
+      *func* with the given arguments *args*, after  logging and taking into account
+      the *dry_run* flag. XXX see also.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.spawn(cmd)
+
+      Invokes :func:`distutils.util.spawn`. This invokes an external  process to run
+      the given command. XXX see also.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.mkpath(name[, mode=511])
+
+      Invokes :func:`distutils.dir_util.mkpath`. This creates a directory  and any
+      missing ancestor directories. XXX see also.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.move_file(src, dst)
+
+      Invokes :meth:`distutils.file_util.move_file`. Renames *src* to  *dst*.  XXX see
+      also.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.announce(msg[, level=1])
+
+      Write a message using :func:`distutils.log.debug`. XXX see also.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.warn(msg)
+
+      Write a warning message *msg* to standard error.
+
+
+   .. method:: CCompiler.debug_print(msg)
+
+      If the *debug* flag is set on this :class:`CCompiler` instance, print  *msg* to
+      standard output, otherwise do nothing.
+
+.. % \subsection{Compiler-specific modules}
+.. %
+.. % The following modules implement concrete subclasses of the abstract
+.. % \class{CCompiler} class. They should not be instantiated directly, but should
+.. % be created using \function{distutils.ccompiler.new_compiler()} factory
+.. % function.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.unixccompiler` --- Unix C Compiler
+==================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.unixccompiler
+   :synopsis: UNIX C Compiler
+
+
+This module provides the :class:`UnixCCompiler` class, a subclass of
+:class:`CCompiler` that handles the typical Unix-style command-line  C compiler:
+
+* macros defined with :option:`-Dname[=value]`
+
+* macros undefined with :option:`-Uname`
+
+* include search directories specified with :option:`-Idir`
+
+* libraries specified with :option:`-llib`
+
+* library search directories specified with :option:`-Ldir`
+
+* compile handled by :program:`cc` (or similar) executable with :option:`-c`
+  option: compiles :file:`.c` to :file:`.o`
+
+* link static library handled by :program:`ar` command (possibly with
+  :program:`ranlib`)
+
+* link shared library handled by :program:`cc` :option:`-shared`
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.msvccompiler` --- Microsoft Compiler
+====================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.msvccompiler
+   :synopsis: Microsoft Compiler
+
+
+This module provides :class:`MSVCCompiler`, an implementation of the abstract
+:class:`CCompiler` class for Microsoft Visual Studio. Typically, extension
+modules need to be compiled with the same compiler that was used to compile
+Python. For Python 2.3 and earlier, the compiler was Visual Studio 6. For Python
+2.4 and 2.5, the compiler is Visual Studio .NET 2003. The AMD64 and Itanium
+binaries are created using the Platform SDK.
+
+:class:`MSVCCompiler` will normally choose the right compiler, linker etc. on
+its own. To override this choice, the environment variables *DISTUTILS_USE_SDK*
+and *MSSdk* must be both set. *MSSdk* indicates that the current environment has
+been setup by the SDK's ``SetEnv.Cmd`` script, or that the environment variables
+had been registered when the SDK was installed; *DISTUTILS_USE_SDK* indicates
+that the distutils user has made an explicit choice to override the compiler
+selection by :class:`MSVCCompiler`.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.bcppcompiler` --- Borland Compiler
+==================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.bcppcompiler
+
+
+This module provides :class:`BorlandCCompiler`, an subclass of the abstract
+:class:`CCompiler` class for the Borland C++ compiler.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.cygwincompiler` --- Cygwin Compiler
+===================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.cygwinccompiler
+
+
+This module provides the :class:`CygwinCCompiler` class, a subclass of
+:class:`UnixCCompiler` that handles the Cygwin port of the GNU C compiler to
+Windows.  It also contains the Mingw32CCompiler class which handles the mingw32
+port of GCC (same as cygwin in no-cygwin mode).
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.emxccompiler` --- OS/2 EMX Compiler
+===================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.emxccompiler
+   :synopsis: OS/2 EMX Compiler support
+
+
+This module provides the EMXCCompiler class, a subclass of
+:class:`UnixCCompiler` that handles the EMX port of the GNU C compiler to OS/2.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.archive_util` ---  Archiving utilities
+======================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.archive_util
+   :synopsis: Utility functions for creating archive files (tarballs, zip files, ...)
+
+
+This module provides a few functions for creating archive files, such as
+tarballs or zipfiles.
+
+
+.. function:: make_archive(base_name, format[, root_dir=None, base_dir=None, verbose=0, dry_run=0])
+
+   Create an archive file (eg. ``zip`` or ``tar``).  *base_name*  is the name of
+   the file to create, minus any format-specific extension;  *format* is the
+   archive format: one of ``zip``, ``tar``,  ``ztar``, or ``gztar``. *root_dir* is
+   a directory that will be the root directory of the archive; ie. we typically
+   ``chdir`` into *root_dir* before  creating the archive.  *base_dir* is the
+   directory where we start  archiving from; ie. *base_dir* will be the common
+   prefix of all files and directories in the archive.  *root_dir* and *base_dir*
+   both default to the current directory.  Returns the name of the archive file.
+
+   .. XXX This should be changed to support bz2 files.
+
+
+.. function:: make_tarball(base_name, base_dir[, compress='gzip', verbose=0, dry_run=0])
+
+   'Create an (optional compressed) archive as a tar file from all files in and
+   under *base_dir*. *compress* must be ``'gzip'`` (the default),  ``'compress'``,
+   ``'bzip2'``, or ``None``.  Both :program:`tar` and the compression utility named
+   by *compress* must be on the  default program search path, so this is probably
+   Unix-specific.  The  output tar file will be named :file:`base_dir.tar`,
+   possibly plus the appropriate compression extension (:file:`.gz`, :file:`.bz2`
+   or :file:`.Z`).  Return the output filename.
+
+   .. XXX This should be replaced with calls to the :mod:`tarfile` module.
+
+
+.. function:: make_zipfile(base_name, base_dir[, verbose=0, dry_run=0])
+
+   Create a zip file from all files in and under *base_dir*.  The output zip file
+   will be named *base_dir* + :file:`.zip`.  Uses either the  :mod:`zipfile` Python
+   module (if available) or the InfoZIP :file:`zip`  utility (if installed and
+   found on the default search path).  If neither  tool is available, raises
+   :exc:`DistutilsExecError`.   Returns the name of the output zip file.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.dep_util` --- Dependency checking
+=================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.dep_util
+   :synopsis: Utility functions for simple dependency checking
+
+
+This module provides functions for performing simple, timestamp-based
+dependency of files and groups of files; also, functions based entirely  on such
+timestamp dependency analysis.
+
+
+.. function:: newer(source, target)
+
+   Return true if *source* exists and is more recently modified than *target*, or
+   if *source* exists and *target* doesn't. Return false if both exist and *target*
+   is the same age or newer  than *source*. Raise :exc:`DistutilsFileError` if
+   *source* does not exist.
+
+
+.. function:: newer_pairwise(sources, targets)
+
+   Walk two filename lists in parallel, testing if each source is newer than its
+   corresponding target.  Return a pair of lists (*sources*, *targets*) where
+   source is newer than target, according to the semantics of :func:`newer`
+
+   .. % % equivalent to a listcomp...
+
+
+.. function:: newer_group(sources, target[, missing='error'])
+
+   Return true if *target* is out-of-date with respect to any file listed in
+   *sources*  In other words, if *target* exists and is newer than every file in
+   *sources*, return false; otherwise return true. *missing* controls what we do
+   when a source file is missing; the default (``'error'``) is to blow up with an
+   :exc:`OSError` from  inside :func:`os.stat`; if it is ``'ignore'``, we silently
+   drop any missing source files; if it is ``'newer'``, any missing source files
+   make us assume that *target* is out-of-date (this is handy in "dry-run" mode:
+   it'll make you pretend to carry out commands that wouldn't work because inputs
+   are missing, but that doesn't matter because you're not actually going to run
+   the commands).
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.dir_util` --- Directory tree operations
+=======================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.dir_util
+   :synopsis: Utility functions for operating on directories and directory trees
+
+
+This module provides functions for operating on directories and trees of
+directories.
+
+
+.. function:: mkpath(name[, mode=0777, verbose=0, dry_run=0])
+
+   Create a directory and any missing ancestor directories.  If the directory
+   already exists (or if *name* is the empty string, which means the current
+   directory, which of course exists), then do nothing.  Raise
+   :exc:`DistutilsFileError` if unable to create some directory along the way (eg.
+   some sub-path exists, but is a file rather than a directory).  If *verbose* is
+   true, print a one-line summary of each mkdir to stdout.  Return the list of
+   directories actually created.
+
+
+.. function:: create_tree(base_dir, files[, mode=0777, verbose=0, dry_run=0])
+
+   Create all the empty directories under *base_dir* needed to put *files* there.
+   *base_dir* is just the a name of a directory which doesn't necessarily exist
+   yet; *files* is a list of filenames to be interpreted relative to *base_dir*.
+   *base_dir* + the directory portion of every file in *files* will be created if
+   it doesn't already exist.  *mode*, *verbose* and *dry_run* flags  are as for
+   :func:`mkpath`.
+
+
+.. function:: copy_tree(src, dst[, preserve_mode=1, preserve_times=1, preserve_symlinks=0, update=0, verbose=0, dry_run=0])
+
+   Copy an entire directory tree *src* to a new location *dst*.  Both *src* and
+   *dst* must be directory names.  If *src* is not a directory, raise
+   :exc:`DistutilsFileError`.  If *dst* does  not exist, it is created with
+   :func:`mkpath`.  The end result of the  copy is that every file in *src* is
+   copied to *dst*, and  directories under *src* are recursively copied to *dst*.
+   Return the list of files that were copied or might have been copied, using their
+   output name. The return value is unaffected by *update* or *dry_run*: it is
+   simply the list of all files under *src*, with the names changed to be under
+   *dst*.
+
+   *preserve_mode* and *preserve_times* are the same as for :func:`copy_file` in
+   :mod:`distutils.file_util`; note that they only apply to regular files, not to
+   directories.  If *preserve_symlinks* is true, symlinks will be copied as
+   symlinks (on platforms that support them!); otherwise (the default), the
+   destination of the symlink will be copied.  *update* and *verbose* are the same
+   as for :func:`copy_file`.
+
+
+.. function:: remove_tree(directory[, verbose=0, dry_run=0])
+
+   Recursively remove *directory* and all files and directories underneath it. Any
+   errors are ignored (apart from being reported to ``sys.stdout`` if *verbose* is
+   true).
+
+**\*\*** Some of this could be replaced with the shutil module? **\*\***
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.file_util` --- Single file operations
+=====================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.file_util
+   :synopsis: Utility functions for operating on single files
+
+
+This module contains some utility functions for operating on individual files.
+
+
+.. function:: copy_file(src, dst[, preserve_mode=1, preserve_times=1, update=0, link=None, verbose=0, dry_run=0])
+
+   Copy file *src* to *dst*. If *dst* is a directory, then *src* is copied there
+   with the same name; otherwise, it must be a filename. (If the file exists, it
+   will be ruthlessly clobbered.) If *preserve_mode* is true (the default), the
+   file's mode (type and permission bits, or whatever is analogous on the
+   current platform) is copied. If *preserve_times* is true (the default), the
+   last-modified and last-access times are copied as well. If *update* is true,
+   *src* will only be copied if *dst* does not exist, or if *dst* does exist but
+   is older than *src*.
+
+   *link* allows you to make hard links (using :func:`os.link`) or symbolic links
+   (using :func:`os.symlink`) instead of copying: set it to ``'hard'`` or
+   ``'sym'``; if it is ``None`` (the default), files are copied. Don't set *link*
+   on systems that don't support it: :func:`copy_file` doesn't check if hard or
+   symbolic linking is available.  It uses :func:`_copy_file_contents` to copy file
+   contents.
+
+   Return a tuple ``(dest_name, copied)``: *dest_name* is the actual  name of the
+   output file, and *copied* is true if the file was copied  (or would have been
+   copied, if *dry_run* true).
+
+   .. % XXX if the destination file already exists, we clobber it if
+   .. % copying, but blow up if linking.  Hmmm.  And I don't know what
+   .. % macostools.copyfile() does.  Should definitely be consistent, and
+   .. % should probably blow up if destination exists and we would be
+   .. % changing it (ie. it's not already a hard/soft link to src OR
+   .. % (not update) and (src newer than dst)).
+
+
+.. function:: move_file(src, dst[, verbose, dry_run])
+
+   Move file *src* to *dst*. If *dst* is a directory, the file will be moved into
+   it with the same name; otherwise, *src* is just renamed to *dst*.  Returns the
+   new full name of the file.
+
+   .. warning::
+
+      Handles cross-device moves on Unix using :func:`copy_file`.  What about
+      other systems?
+
+
+.. function:: write_file(filename, contents)
+
+   Create a file called *filename* and write *contents* (a sequence of strings
+   without line terminators) to it.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.util` --- Miscellaneous other utility functions
+===============================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.util
+   :synopsis: Miscellaneous other utility functions
+
+
+This module contains other assorted bits and pieces that don't fit into  any
+other utility module.
+
+
+.. function:: get_platform()
+
+   Return a string that identifies the current platform.  This is used mainly to
+   distinguish platform-specific build directories and platform-specific built
+   distributions.  Typically includes the OS name and version and the architecture
+   (as supplied by 'os.uname()'), although the exact information included depends
+   on the OS; eg. for IRIX the architecture isn't particularly important (IRIX only
+   runs on SGI hardware), but for Linux the kernel version isn't particularly
+   important.
+
+   Examples of returned values:
+
+   * ``linux-i586``
+   * ``linux-alpha``
+   * ``solaris-2.6-sun4u``
+   * ``irix-5.3``
+   * ``irix64-6.2``
+
+   For non-POSIX platforms, currently just returns ``sys.platform``.
+
+   For Mac OS X systems the OS version reflects the minimal version on which
+   binaries will run (that is, the value of ``MACOSX_DEPLOYMENT_TARGET``
+   during the build of Python), not the OS version of the current system.
+
+   For universal binary builds on Mac OS X the architecture value reflects
+   the univeral binary status instead of the architecture of the current
+   processor. For 32-bit universal binaries the architecture is ``fat``,
+   for 64-bit universal binaries the architecture is ``fat64``, and
+   for 4-way universal binaries the architecture is ``universal``. Starting
+   from Python 2.7 and Python 3.2 the architecture ``fat3`` is used for
+   a 3-way universal build (ppc, i386, x86_64) and ``intel`` is used for
+   a univeral build with the i386 and x86_64 architectures
+
+   Examples of returned values on Mac OS X:
+
+   * ``macosx-10.3-ppc``
+
+   * ``macosx-10.3-fat``
+
+   * ``macosx-10.5-universal``
+
+   * ``macosx-10.6-intel``
+
+   .. % XXX isn't this also provided by some other non-distutils module?
+
+
+.. function:: convert_path(pathname)
+
+   Return 'pathname' as a name that will work on the native filesystem, i.e. split
+   it on '/' and put it back together again using the current directory separator.
+   Needed because filenames in the setup script are always supplied in Unix style,
+   and have to be converted to the local convention before we can actually use them
+   in the filesystem.  Raises :exc:`ValueError` on non-Unix-ish systems if
+   *pathname* either  starts or ends with a slash.
+
+
+.. function:: change_root(new_root, pathname)
+
+   Return *pathname* with *new_root* prepended.  If *pathname* is relative, this is
+   equivalent to ``os.path.join(new_root,pathname)`` Otherwise, it requires making
+   *pathname* relative and then joining the two, which is tricky on DOS/Windows.
+
+
+.. function:: check_environ()
+
+   Ensure that 'os.environ' has all the environment variables we guarantee that
+   users can use in config files, command-line options, etc.  Currently this
+   includes:
+
+   * :envvar:`HOME` - user's home directory (Unix only)
+   * :envvar:`PLAT` - description of the current platform, including hardware and
+     OS (see :func:`get_platform`)
+
+
+.. function:: subst_vars(s, local_vars)
+
+   Perform shell/Perl-style variable substitution on *s*.  Every occurrence of
+   ``$`` followed by a name is considered a variable, and variable is substituted
+   by the value found in the *local_vars* dictionary, or in ``os.environ`` if it's
+   not in *local_vars*. *os.environ* is first checked/augmented to guarantee that
+   it contains certain values: see :func:`check_environ`.  Raise :exc:`ValueError`
+   for any variables not found in either *local_vars* or ``os.environ``.
+
+   Note that this is not a fully-fledged string interpolation function. A valid
+   ``$variable`` can consist only of upper and lower case letters, numbers and an
+   underscore. No { } or ( ) style quoting is available.
+
+
+.. function:: grok_environment_error(exc[, prefix='error: '])
+
+   Generate a useful error message from an :exc:`EnvironmentError`  (:exc:`IOError`
+   or :exc:`OSError`) exception object.   Handles Python 1.5.1 and later styles,
+   and does what it can to deal with  exception objects that don't have a filename
+   (which happens when the error  is due to a two-file operation, such as
+   :func:`rename` or  :func:`link`).  Returns the error message as a string
+   prefixed  with *prefix*.
+
+
+.. function:: split_quoted(s)
+
+   Split a string up according to Unix shell-like rules for quotes and backslashes.
+   In short: words are delimited by spaces, as long as those spaces are not escaped
+   by a backslash, or inside a quoted string. Single and double quotes are
+   equivalent, and the quote characters can be backslash-escaped.  The backslash is
+   stripped from any two-character escape sequence, leaving only the escaped
+   character.  The quote characters are stripped from any quoted string.  Returns a
+   list of words.
+
+   .. % Should probably be moved into the standard library.
+
+
+.. function:: execute(func, args[, msg=None, verbose=0, dry_run=0])
+
+   Perform some action that affects the outside world (for instance, writing to the
+   filesystem).  Such actions are special because they are disabled by the
+   *dry_run* flag.  This method takes  care of all that bureaucracy for you; all
+   you have to do is supply the function to call and an argument tuple for it (to
+   embody the "external action" being performed), and an optional message to print.
+
+
+.. function:: strtobool(val)
+
+   Convert a string representation of truth to true (1) or false (0).
+
+   True values are ``y``, ``yes``, ``t``, ``true``, ``on``  and ``1``; false values
+   are ``n``, ``no``, ``f``, ``false``,  ``off`` and ``0``.  Raises
+   :exc:`ValueError` if *val*  is anything else.
+
+
+.. function:: byte_compile(py_files[, optimize=0, force=0, prefix=None, base_dir=None, verbose=1, dry_run=0, direct=None])
+
+   Byte-compile a collection of Python source files to either :file:`.pyc` or
+   :file:`.pyo` files in the same directory.  *py_files* is a list of files to
+   compile; any files that don't end in :file:`.py` are silently skipped.
+   *optimize* must be one of the following:
+
+   * ``0`` - don't optimize (generate :file:`.pyc`)
+   * ``1`` - normal optimization (like ``python -O``)
+   * ``2`` - extra optimization (like ``python -OO``)
+
+   If *force* is true, all files are recompiled regardless of timestamps.
+
+   The source filename encoded in each :term:`bytecode` file defaults to the filenames
+   listed in *py_files*; you can modify these with *prefix* and *basedir*.
+   *prefix* is a string that will be stripped off of each source filename, and
+   *base_dir* is a directory name that will be prepended (after *prefix* is
+   stripped).  You can supply either or both (or neither) of *prefix* and
+   *base_dir*, as you wish.
+
+   If *dry_run* is true, doesn't actually do anything that would affect the
+   filesystem.
+
+   Byte-compilation is either done directly in this interpreter process with the
+   standard :mod:`py_compile` module, or indirectly by writing a temporary script
+   and executing it.  Normally, you should let :func:`byte_compile` figure out to
+   use direct compilation or not (see the source for details).  The *direct* flag
+   is used by the script generated in indirect mode; unless you know what you're
+   doing, leave it set to ``None``.
+
+
+.. function:: rfc822_escape(header)
+
+   Return a version of *header* escaped for inclusion in an :rfc:`822` header, by
+   ensuring there are 8 spaces space after each newline. Note that it does no other
+   modification of the string.
+
+   .. % this _can_ be replaced
+
+.. % \subsection{Distutils objects}
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.dist` --- The Distribution class
+================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.dist
+   :synopsis: Provides the Distribution class, which represents the module distribution being
+              built/installed/distributed
+
+
+This module provides the :class:`Distribution` class, which represents the
+module distribution being built/installed/distributed.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.extension` --- The Extension class
+==================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.extension
+   :synopsis: Provides the Extension class, used to describe C/C++ extension modules in setup
+              scripts
+
+
+This module provides the :class:`Extension` class, used to describe C/C++
+extension modules in setup scripts.
+
+.. % \subsection{Ungrouped modules}
+.. % The following haven't been moved into a more appropriate section yet.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.debug` --- Distutils debug mode
+===============================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.debug
+   :synopsis: Provides the debug flag for distutils
+
+
+This module provides the DEBUG flag.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.errors` --- Distutils exceptions
+================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.errors
+   :synopsis: Provides standard distutils exceptions
+
+
+Provides exceptions used by the Distutils modules.  Note that Distutils modules
+may raise standard exceptions; in particular, SystemExit is usually raised for
+errors that are obviously the end-user's fault (eg. bad command-line arguments).
+
+This module is safe to use in ``from ... import *`` mode; it only exports
+symbols whose names start with ``Distutils`` and end with ``Error``.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.fancy_getopt` --- Wrapper around the standard getopt module
+===========================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.fancy_getopt
+   :synopsis: Additional getopt functionality
+
+
+This module provides a wrapper around the standard :mod:`getopt`  module that
+provides the following additional features:
+
+* short and long options are tied together
+
+* options have help strings, so :func:`fancy_getopt` could potentially  create a
+  complete usage summary
+
+* options set attributes of a passed-in object
+
+* boolean options can have "negative aliases" --- eg. if :option:`--quiet` is
+  the "negative alias" of :option:`--verbose`, then :option:`--quiet` on the
+  command line sets *verbose* to false.
+
+**\*\*** Should be replaced with :mod:`optik` (which is also now known as
+:mod:`optparse` in Python 2.3 and later). **\*\***
+
+
+.. function:: fancy_getopt(options, negative_opt, object, args)
+
+   Wrapper function. *options* is a list of ``(long_option, short_option,
+   help_string)`` 3-tuples as described in the constructor for
+   :class:`FancyGetopt`. *negative_opt* should be a dictionary mapping option names
+   to option names, both the key and value should be in the *options* list.
+   *object* is an object which will be used to store values (see the :meth:`getopt`
+   method of the :class:`FancyGetopt` class). *args* is the argument list. Will use
+   ``sys.argv[1:]`` if you  pass ``None`` as *args*.
+
+
+.. function:: wrap_text(text, width)
+
+   Wraps *text* to less than *width* wide.
+
+   .. XXX Should be replaced with :mod:`textwrap` (which is available in Python
+      2.3 and later).
+
+
+.. class:: FancyGetopt([option_table=None])
+
+   The option_table is a list of 3-tuples: ``(long_option, short_option,
+   help_string)``
+
+   If an option takes an argument, its *long_option* should have ``'='`` appended;
+   *short_option* should just be a single character, no ``':'`` in any case.
+   *short_option* should be ``None`` if a *long_option*  doesn't have a
+   corresponding *short_option*. All option tuples must have long options.
+
+The :class:`FancyGetopt` class provides the following methods:
+
+
+.. method:: FancyGetopt.getopt([args=None, object=None])
+
+   Parse command-line options in args. Store as attributes on *object*.
+
+   If *args* is ``None`` or not supplied, uses ``sys.argv[1:]``.  If *object* is
+   ``None`` or not supplied, creates a new :class:`OptionDummy` instance, stores
+   option values there, and returns a tuple ``(args, object)``.  If *object* is
+   supplied, it is modified in place and :func:`getopt` just returns *args*; in
+   both cases, the returned *args* is a modified copy of the passed-in *args* list,
+   which is left untouched.
+
+   .. % and args returned are?
+
+
+.. method:: FancyGetopt.get_option_order()
+
+   Returns the list of ``(option, value)`` tuples processed by the previous run of
+   :meth:`getopt`  Raises :exc:`RuntimeError` if :meth:`getopt` hasn't been called
+   yet.
+
+
+.. method:: FancyGetopt.generate_help([header=None])
+
+   Generate help text (a list of strings, one per suggested line of output) from
+   the option table for this :class:`FancyGetopt` object.
+
+   If supplied, prints the supplied *header* at the top of the help.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.filelist` --- The FileList class
+================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.filelist
+   :synopsis: The FileList class, used for poking about the file system and
+              building lists of files.
+
+
+This module provides the :class:`FileList` class, used for poking about the
+filesystem and building lists of files.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.log` --- Simple PEP 282-style logging
+=====================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.log
+   :synopsis: A simple logging mechanism, 282-style
+
+
+.. XXX Should be replaced with standard :mod:`logging` module.
+
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.spawn` --- Spawn a sub-process
+==============================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.spawn
+   :synopsis: Provides the spawn() function
+
+
+This module provides the :func:`spawn` function, a front-end to  various
+platform-specific functions for launching another program in a  sub-process.
+Also provides :func:`find_executable` to search the path for a given executable
+name.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.sysconfig` --- System configuration information
+===============================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.sysconfig
+   :synopsis: Low-level access to configuration information of the Python interpreter.
+.. moduleauthor:: Fred L. Drake, Jr. <fdrake@acm.org>
+.. moduleauthor:: Greg Ward <gward@python.net>
+.. sectionauthor:: Fred L. Drake, Jr. <fdrake@acm.org>
+
+
+The :mod:`distutils.sysconfig` module provides access to Python's low-level
+configuration information.  The specific configuration variables available
+depend heavily on the platform and configuration. The specific variables depend
+on the build process for the specific version of Python being run; the variables
+are those found in the :file:`Makefile` and configuration header that are
+installed with Python on Unix systems.  The configuration header is called
+:file:`pyconfig.h` for Python versions starting with 2.2, and :file:`config.h`
+for earlier versions of Python.
+
+Some additional functions are provided which perform some useful manipulations
+for other parts of the :mod:`distutils` package.
+
+
+.. data:: PREFIX
+
+   The result of ``os.path.normpath(sys.prefix)``.
+
+
+.. data:: EXEC_PREFIX
+
+   The result of ``os.path.normpath(sys.exec_prefix)``.
+
+
+.. function:: get_config_var(name)
+
+   Return the value of a single variable.  This is equivalent to
+   ``get_config_vars().get(name)``.
+
+
+.. function:: get_config_vars(...)
+
+   Return a set of variable definitions.  If there are no arguments, this returns a
+   dictionary mapping names of configuration variables to values.  If arguments are
+   provided, they should be strings, and the return value will be a sequence giving
+   the associated values. If a given name does not have a corresponding value,
+   ``None`` will be included for that variable.
+
+
+.. function:: get_config_h_filename()
+
+   Return the full path name of the configuration header.  For Unix, this will be
+   the header generated by the :program:`configure` script; for other platforms the
+   header will have been supplied directly by the Python source distribution.  The
+   file is a platform-specific text file.
+
+
+.. function:: get_makefile_filename()
+
+   Return the full path name of the :file:`Makefile` used to build Python.  For
+   Unix, this will be a file generated by the :program:`configure` script; the
+   meaning for other platforms will vary.  The file is a platform-specific text
+   file, if it exists. This function is only useful on POSIX platforms.
+
+
+.. function:: get_python_inc([plat_specific[, prefix]])
+
+   Return the directory for either the general or platform-dependent C include
+   files.  If *plat_specific* is true, the platform-dependent include directory is
+   returned; if false or omitted, the platform-independent directory is returned.
+   If *prefix* is given, it is used as either the prefix instead of
+   :const:`PREFIX`, or as the exec-prefix instead of :const:`EXEC_PREFIX` if
+   *plat_specific* is true.
+
+
+.. function:: get_python_lib([plat_specific[, standard_lib[, prefix]]])
+
+   Return the directory for either the general or platform-dependent library
+   installation.  If *plat_specific* is true, the platform-dependent include
+   directory is returned; if false or omitted, the platform-independent directory
+   is returned.  If *prefix* is given, it is used as either the prefix instead of
+   :const:`PREFIX`, or as the exec-prefix instead of :const:`EXEC_PREFIX` if
+   *plat_specific* is true.  If *standard_lib* is true, the directory for the
+   standard library is returned rather than the directory for the installation of
+   third-party extensions.
+
+The following function is only intended for use within the :mod:`distutils`
+package.
+
+
+.. function:: customize_compiler(compiler)
+
+   Do any platform-specific customization of a
+   :class:`distutils.ccompiler.CCompiler` instance.
+
+   This function is only needed on Unix at this time, but should be called
+   consistently to support forward-compatibility.  It inserts the information that
+   varies across Unix flavors and is stored in Python's :file:`Makefile`.  This
+   information includes the selected compiler, compiler and linker options, and the
+   extension used by the linker for shared objects.
+
+This function is even more special-purpose, and should only be used from
+Python's own build procedures.
+
+
+.. function:: set_python_build()
+
+   Inform the :mod:`distutils.sysconfig` module that it is being used as part of
+   the build process for Python.  This changes a lot of relative locations for
+   files, allowing them to be located in the build area rather than in an installed
+   Python.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.text_file` --- The TextFile class
+=================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.text_file
+   :synopsis: provides the TextFile class, a simple interface to text files
+
+
+This module provides the :class:`TextFile` class, which gives an interface  to
+text files that (optionally) takes care of stripping comments, ignoring  blank
+lines, and joining lines with backslashes.
+
+
+.. class:: TextFile([filename=None, file=None, **options])
+
+   This class provides a file-like object that takes care of all  the things you
+   commonly want to do when processing a text file  that has some line-by-line
+   syntax: strip comments (as long as ``#``  is your comment character), skip blank
+   lines, join adjacent lines by escaping the newline (ie. backslash at end of
+   line), strip leading and/or trailing whitespace.  All of these are optional and
+   independently controllable.
+
+   The class provides a :meth:`warn` method so you can generate  warning messages
+   that report physical line number, even if the  logical line in question spans
+   multiple physical lines.  Also  provides :meth:`unreadline` for implementing
+   line-at-a-time lookahead.
+
+   :class:`TextFile` instances are create with either *filename*, *file*, or both.
+   :exc:`RuntimeError` is raised if both are ``None``. *filename* should be a
+   string, and *file* a file object (or something that provides :meth:`readline`
+   and :meth:`close`  methods).  It is recommended that you supply at least
+   *filename*,  so that :class:`TextFile` can include it in warning messages.  If
+   *file* is not supplied, :class:`TextFile` creates its own using the
+   :func:`open` built-in function.
+
+   The options are all boolean, and affect the values returned by :meth:`readline`
+
+   +------------------+--------------------------------+---------+
+   | option name      | description                    | default |
+   +==================+================================+=========+
+   | *strip_comments* | strip from ``'#'`` to end-of-  | true    |
+   |                  | line, as well as any           |         |
+   |                  | whitespace leading up to the   |         |
+   |                  | ``'#'``\ ---unless it is       |         |
+   |                  | escaped by a backslash         |         |
+   +------------------+--------------------------------+---------+
+   | *lstrip_ws*      | strip leading whitespace from  | false   |
+   |                  | each line before returning it  |         |
+   +------------------+--------------------------------+---------+
+   | *rstrip_ws*      | strip trailing whitespace      | true    |
+   |                  | (including line terminator!)   |         |
+   |                  | from each line before          |         |
+   |                  | returning it.                  |         |
+   +------------------+--------------------------------+---------+
+   | *skip_blanks*    | skip lines that are empty      | true    |
+   |                  | \*after\* stripping comments   |         |
+   |                  | and whitespace.  (If both      |         |
+   |                  | lstrip_ws and rstrip_ws are    |         |
+   |                  | false, then some lines may     |         |
+   |                  | consist of solely whitespace:  |         |
+   |                  | these will \*not\* be skipped, |         |
+   |                  | even if *skip_blanks* is       |         |
+   |                  | true.)                         |         |
+   +------------------+--------------------------------+---------+
+   | *join_lines*     | if a backslash is the last     | false   |
+   |                  | non-newline character on a     |         |
+   |                  | line after stripping comments  |         |
+   |                  | and whitespace, join the       |         |
+   |                  | following line to it to form   |         |
+   |                  | one logical line; if N         |         |
+   |                  | consecutive lines end with a   |         |
+   |                  | backslash, then N+1 physical   |         |
+   |                  | lines will be joined to form   |         |
+   |                  | one logical line.              |         |
+   +------------------+--------------------------------+---------+
+   | *collapse_join*  | strip leading whitespace from  | false   |
+   |                  | lines that are joined to their |         |
+   |                  | predecessor; only matters if   |         |
+   |                  | ``(join_lines and not          |         |
+   |                  | lstrip_ws)``                   |         |
+   +------------------+--------------------------------+---------+
+
+   Note that since *rstrip_ws* can strip the trailing newline, the semantics of
+   :meth:`readline` must differ from those of the built-in file object's
+   :meth:`readline` method!  In particular, :meth:`readline`  returns ``None`` for
+   end-of-file: an empty string might just be a  blank line (or an all-whitespace
+   line), if *rstrip_ws* is true  but *skip_blanks* is not.
+
+
+   .. method:: TextFile.open(filename)
+
+      Open a new file *filename*.  This overrides any *file* or *filename*
+      constructor arguments.
+
+
+   .. method:: TextFile.close()
+
+      Close the current file and forget everything we know about it (including the
+      filename and the current line number).
+
+
+   .. method:: TextFile.warn(msg[,line=None])
+
+      Print (to stderr) a warning message tied to the current logical line in the
+      current file.  If the current logical line in the file spans multiple physical
+      lines, the warning refers to the whole range, such as ``"lines 3-5"``.  If
+      *line* is supplied,  it overrides the current line number; it may be a list or
+      tuple  to indicate a range of physical lines, or an integer for a  single
+      physical line.
+
+
+   .. method:: TextFile.readline()
+
+      Read and return a single logical line from the current file (or from an internal
+      buffer if lines have previously been "unread" with :meth:`unreadline`).  If the
+      *join_lines* option  is true, this may involve reading multiple physical lines
+      concatenated into a single string.  Updates the current line number,  so calling
+      :meth:`warn` after :meth:`readline` emits a warning  about the physical line(s)
+      just read.  Returns ``None`` on end-of-file,  since the empty string can occur
+      if *rstrip_ws* is true but  *strip_blanks* is not.
+
+
+   .. method:: TextFile.readlines()
+
+      Read and return the list of all logical lines remaining in the current file.
+      This updates the current line number to the last line of the file.
+
+
+   .. method:: TextFile.unreadline(line)
+
+      Push *line* (a string) onto an internal buffer that will be checked by future
+      :meth:`readline` calls.  Handy for implementing a parser with line-at-a-time
+      lookahead. Note that lines that are "unread" with :meth:`unreadline` are not
+      subsequently re-cleansed (whitespace  stripped, or whatever) when read with
+      :meth:`readline`. If multiple calls are made to :meth:`unreadline` before a call
+      to :meth:`readline`, the lines will be returned most in most recent first order.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.version` --- Version number classes
+===================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.version
+   :synopsis: implements classes that represent module version numbers.
+
+
+.. % todo
+.. % \section{Distutils Commands}
+.. %
+.. % This part of Distutils implements the various Distutils commands, such
+.. % as \code{build}, \code{install} \&c. Each command is implemented as a
+.. % separate module, with the command name as the name of the module.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.cmd` --- Abstract base class for Distutils commands
+===================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.cmd
+   :synopsis: This module provides the abstract base class Command. This class is subclassed
+              by the modules in the distutils.command  subpackage.
+
+
+This module supplies the abstract base class :class:`Command`.
+
+
+.. class:: Command(dist)
+
+   Abstract base class for defining command classes, the "worker bees" of the
+   Distutils.  A useful analogy for command classes is to think of them as
+   subroutines with local variables called *options*.  The options are declared in
+   :meth:`initialize_options` and defined (given their final values) in
+   :meth:`finalize_options`, both of which must be defined by every command class.
+   The distinction between the two is necessary because option values might come
+   from the outside world (command line, config file, ...), and any options
+   dependent on other options must be computed after these outside influences have
+   been processed --- hence :meth:`finalize_options`.  The body of the subroutine,
+   where it does all its work based on the values of its options, is the
+   :meth:`run` method, which must also be implemented by every command class.
+
+   The class constructor takes a single argument *dist*, a  :class:`Distribution`
+   instance.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command` --- Individual Distutils commands
+==========================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command
+   :synopsis: This subpackage contains one module for each standard Distutils command.
+
+
+.. % \subsubsection{Individual Distutils commands}
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.bdist` --- Build a binary installer
+===========================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.bdist
+   :synopsis: Build a binary installer for a package
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.bdist_packager` --- Abstract base class for packagers
+=============================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.bdist_packager
+   :synopsis: Abstract base class for packagers
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.bdist_dumb` --- Build a "dumb" installer
+================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.bdist_dumb
+   :synopsis: Build a "dumb" installer - a simple archive of files
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.bdist_msi` --- Build a Microsoft Installer binary package
+=================================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.bdist_msi
+   :synopsis: Build a binary distribution as a Windows MSI file
+
+.. class:: bdist_msi(Command)
+
+   Builds a `Windows Installer`_ (.msi) binary package.
+
+   .. _Windows Installer: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc185688(VS.85).aspx
+
+   In most cases, the ``bdist_msi`` installer is a better choice than the
+   ``bdist_wininst`` installer, because it provides better support for
+   Win64 platforms, allows administrators to perform non-interactive
+   installations, and allows installation through group policies.
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.bdist_rpm` --- Build a binary distribution as a Redhat RPM and SRPM
+===========================================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.bdist_rpm
+   :synopsis: Build a binary distribution as a Redhat RPM and SRPM
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.bdist_wininst` --- Build a Windows installer
+====================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.bdist_wininst
+   :synopsis: Build a Windows installer
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.sdist` --- Build a source distribution
+==============================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.sdist
+   :synopsis: Build a source distribution
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.build` --- Build all files of a package
+===============================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.build
+   :synopsis: Build all files of a package
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.build_clib` --- Build any C libraries in a package
+==========================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.build_clib
+   :synopsis: Build any C libraries in a package
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.build_ext` --- Build any extensions in a package
+========================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.build_ext
+   :synopsis: Build any extensions in a package
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.build_py` --- Build the .py/.pyc files of a package
+===========================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.build_py
+   :synopsis: Build the .py/.pyc files of a package
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.build_scripts` --- Build the scripts of a package
+=========================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.build_scripts
+   :synopsis: Build the scripts of a package
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.clean` --- Clean a package build area
+=============================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.clean
+   :synopsis: Clean a package build area
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.config` --- Perform package configuration
+=================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.config
+   :synopsis: Perform package configuration
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.install` --- Install a package
+======================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.install
+   :synopsis: Install a package
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.install_data` --- Install data files from a package
+===========================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.install_data
+   :synopsis: Install data files from a package
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.install_headers` --- Install C/C++ header files from a package
+======================================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.install_headers
+   :synopsis: Install C/C++ header files from a package
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.install_lib` --- Install library files from a package
+=============================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.install_lib
+   :synopsis: Install library files from a package
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.install_scripts` --- Install script files from a package
+================================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.install_scripts
+   :synopsis: Install script files from a package
+
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.register` --- Register a module with the Python Package Index
+=====================================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.register
+   :synopsis: Register a module with the Python Package Index
+
+
+The ``register`` command registers the package with the Python Package  Index.
+This is described in more detail in :pep:`301`.
+
+.. % todo
+
+:mod:`distutils.command.check` --- Check the meta-data of a package
+===================================================================
+
+.. module:: distutils.command.check
+   :synopsis: Check the metadata of a package
+
+
+The ``check`` command performs some tests on the meta-data of a package.
+For example, it verifies that all required meta-data are provided as
+the arguments passed to the :func:`setup` function.
+
+.. % todo
+
+
+Creating a new Distutils command
+================================
+
+This section outlines the steps to create a new Distutils command.
+
+A new command lives in a module in the :mod:`distutils.command` package. There
+is a sample template in that directory called  :file:`command_template`. Copy
+this file to a new module with the same name as the new command you're
+implementing. This module should implement a class with the same name as the
+module (and the command). So, for instance, to create the command
+``peel_banana`` (so that users can run ``setup.py peel_banana``), you'd copy
+:file:`command_template`  to :file:`distutils/command/peel_banana.py`, then edit
+it so that it's implementing the class :class:`peel_banana`, a subclass of
+:class:`distutils.cmd.Command`.
+
+Subclasses of :class:`Command` must define the following methods.
+
+
+.. method:: Command.initialize_options()
+
+   Set default values for all the options that this command supports.  Note that
+   these defaults may be overridden by other commands, by the setup script, by
+   config files, or by the command-line.  Thus, this is not the place to code
+   dependencies between options; generally, :meth:`initialize_options`
+   implementations are just a bunch of ``self.foo = None`` assignments.
+
+
+.. method:: Command.finalize_options()
+
+   Set final values for all the options that this command supports. This is
+   always called as late as possible, ie.  after any option assignments from the
+   command-line or from other commands have been done.  Thus, this is the place
+   to to code option dependencies: if *foo* depends on *bar*, then it is safe to
+   set *foo* from *bar* as long as *foo* still has the same value it was
+   assigned in :meth:`initialize_options`.
+
+
+.. method:: Command.run()
+
+   A command's raison d'etre: carry out the action it exists to perform, controlled
+   by the options initialized in :meth:`initialize_options`, customized by other
+   commands, the setup script, the command-line, and config files, and finalized in
+   :meth:`finalize_options`.  All terminal output and filesystem interaction should
+   be done by :meth:`run`.
+
+*sub_commands* formalizes the notion of a "family" of commands, eg. ``install``
+as the parent with sub-commands ``install_lib``, ``install_headers``, etc.  The
+parent of a family of commands defines *sub_commands* as a class attribute; it's
+a list of 2-tuples ``(command_name, predicate)``, with *command_name* a string
+and *predicate* an unbound method, a string or None. *predicate* is a method of
+the parent command that determines whether the corresponding command is
+applicable in the current situation.  (Eg. we ``install_headers`` is only
+applicable if we have any C header files to install.)  If *predicate* is None,
+that command is always applicable.
+
+*sub_commands* is usually defined at the \*end\* of a class, because predicates
+can be unbound methods, so they must already have been defined.  The canonical
+example is the :command:`install` command.

File docs/source/builtdist.rst

+.. _built-dist:
+
+****************************
+Creating Built Distributions
+****************************
+
+A "built distribution" is what you're probably used to thinking of either as a
+"binary package" or an "installer" (depending on your background).  It's not
+necessarily binary, though, because it might contain only Python source code
+and/or byte-code; and we don't call it a package, because that word is already
+spoken for in Python.  (And "installer" is a term specific to the world of
+mainstream desktop systems.)
+
+A built distribution is how you make life as easy as possible for installers of
+your module distribution: for users of RPM-based Linux systems, it's a binary
+RPM; for Windows users, it's an executable installer; for Debian-based Linux
+users, it's a Debian package; and so forth.  Obviously, no one person will be
+able to create built distributions for every platform under the sun, so the
+Distutils are designed to enable module developers to concentrate on their
+specialty---writing code and creating source distributions---while an
+intermediary species called *packagers* springs up to turn source distributions
+into built distributions for as many platforms as there are packagers.
+
+Of course, the module developer could be his own packager; or the packager could
+be a volunteer "out there" somewhere who has access to a platform which the
+original developer does not; or it could be software periodically grabbing new
+source distributions and turning them into built distributions for as many
+platforms as the software has access to.  Regardless of who they are, a packager
+uses the setup script and the :command:`bdist` command family to generate built
+distributions.
+
+As a simple example, if I run the following command in the Distutils source
+tree::
+
+   python setup.py bdist
+
+then the Distutils builds my module distribution (the Distutils itself in this
+case), does a "fake" installation (also in the :file:`build` directory), and
+creates the default type of built distribution for my platform.  The default
+format for built distributions is a "dumb" tar file on Unix, and a simple
+executable installer on Windows.  (That tar file is considered "dumb" because it
+has to be unpacked in a specific location to work.)
+
+Thus, the above command on a Unix system creates
+:file:`Distutils-1.0.{plat}.tar.gz`; unpacking this tarball from the right place
+installs the Distutils just as though you had downloaded the source distribution
+and run ``python setup.py install``.  (The "right place" is either the root of
+the filesystem or  Python's :file:`{prefix}` directory, depending on the options
+given to the :command:`bdist_dumb` command; the default is to make dumb
+distributions relative to :file:`{prefix}`.)
+
+Obviously, for pure Python distributions, this isn't any simpler than just
+running ``python setup.py install``\ ---but for non-pure distributions, which
+include extensions that would need to be compiled, it can mean the difference
+between someone being able to use your extensions or not.  And creating "smart"
+built distributions, such as an RPM package or an executable installer for
+Windows, is far more convenient for users even if your distribution doesn't
+include any extensions.
+
+The :command:`bdist` command has a :option:`--formats` option, similar to the
+:command:`sdist` command, which you can use to select the types of built
+distribution to generate: for example, ::
+
+   python setup.py bdist --format=zip
+
+would, when run on a Unix system, create :file:`Distutils-1.0.{plat}.zip`\
+---again, this archive would be unpacked from the root directory to install the