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# Installing and Using Distribute

## Disclaimers

Distribute is a now deprecated fork of the Setuptools project.

Distribute was intended to replace Setuptools as the standard method for working with Python module distributions. The code has since been merged back into the parent project as is being maintained by the community at large.

Distribute is now being maintained as a branch in the Setuptools repository.

### More documentation

You can get more information in the Sphinx-based documentation, located at http://packages.python.org/distribute. This documentation includes the old Setuptools documentation that is slowly replaced, and brand new content.

The Distribute installer modifies your installation by de-activating an existing installation of Setuptools in a bootstrap process. This process has been tested in various installation schemes and contexts but in case of a bug during this process your Python installation might be left in a broken state. Since all modified files and directories are copied before the installation starts, you will be able to get back to a normal state by reading the instructions in the Uninstallation instructions section.

In any case, it is recommended to save you site-packages directory before you start the installation of Distribute.

## Installation Instructions

Distribute is only released as a source distribution.

It can be installed using pip, and can be done so with the source tarball, or by using the distribute_setup.py script provided online.

distribute_setup.py is the simplest and preferred way on all systems.

### distribute_setup.py

If your shell has the curl program you can do:

$curl -O http://python-distribute.org/distribute_setup.py$ python distribute_setup.py


Notice this file is also provided in the source release.

### pip

Run easy_install or pip:

$pip install distribute  ### Source installation Download the source tarball, uncompress it, then run the install command: $ curl -O http://pypi.python.org/packages/source/d/distribute/distribute-0.6.44.tar.gz
$tar -xzvf distribute-0.6.44.tar.gz$ cd distribute-0.6.44
$python setup.py install  ## Uninstallation Instructions Like other distutils-based distributions, Distribute doesn't provide an uninstaller yet. It's all done manually! We are all waiting for PEP 376 support in Python. Distribute is installed in three steps: 1. it gets out of the way an existing installation of Setuptools 2. it installs a fake setuptools installation 3. it installs distribute Distribute can be removed like this: • remove the distribute*.egg file located in your site-packages directory • remove the setuptools.pth file located in you site-packages directory • remove the easy_install script located in you sys.prefix/bin directory • remove the setuptools*.egg directory located in your site-packages directory, if any. If you want to get back to setuptools: • reinstall setuptools using its instruction. Lastly: • remove the .OLD. directory located in your site-packages directory if any, once you have checked everything was working correctly again. ## Quick help for developers To create an egg which is compatible with Distribute, use the same practice as with Setuptools, e.g.: from setuptools import setup setup(... )  To use pkg_resources to access data files in the egg, you should require the Setuptools distribution explicitly: from setuptools import setup setup(... install_requires=['setuptools'] )  Only if you need Distribute-specific functionality should you depend on it explicitly. In this case, replace the Setuptools dependency: from setuptools import setup setup(... install_requires=['distribute'] )  ## Install FAQ • Why is Distribute wrapping my Setuptools installation? Since Distribute is a fork, and since it provides the same package and modules, it renames the existing Setuptools egg and inserts a new one which merely wraps the Distribute code. This way, full backwards compatibility is kept for packages which rely on the Setuptools modules. At the same time, packages can meet their dependency on Setuptools without actually installing it (which would disable Distribute). • How does Distribute interact with virtualenv? Everytime you create a virtualenv it will install setuptools by default. You either need to re-install Distribute in it right after or pass the --distribute option when creating it. Once installed, your virtualenv will use Distribute transparently. Although, if you have Setuptools installed in your system-wide Python, and if the virtualenv you are in was generated without the --no-site-packages option, the Distribute installation will stop. You need in this case to build a virtualenv with the --no-site-packages option or to install Distribute globally. • How does Distribute interacts with zc.buildout? You can use Distribute in your zc.buildout, with the --distribute option, starting at zc.buildout 1.4.2: $ python bootstrap.py --distribute


For previous zc.buildout versions, the only thing you need to do is use the bootstrap at http://python-distribute.org/bootstrap.py. Run that bootstrap and bin/buildout (and all other buildout-generated scripts) will transparently use distribute instead of setuptools. You do not need a specific buildout release.

A shared eggs directory is no problem (since 0.6.6): the setuptools egg is left in place unmodified. So other buildouts that do not yet use the new bootstrap continue to work just fine. And there is no need to list distribute somewhere in your eggs: using the bootstrap is enough.

The source code for the bootstrap script is located at http://bitbucket.org/tarek/buildout-distribute.