[Product-Developers] ANN: plone-devstart (please help test)

Alex Clark aclark at aclark.net
Tue Mar 13 17:00:56 UTC 2012

On 3/10/12 5:15 PM, Martin Aspeli wrote:
> Hi,
> Somewhat inspired by the goals of the ``plone.api`` initiative and based
> on the experience of seeing many, many people struggle to get a "safe"
> Plone development up and running due to problems with polluted system
> Python interpreters, missing libraries and confusing buildouts, I have
> created a script called ``plone-devstart.py``.


In the interest of stop energy (kidding)… but seriously: can we not go 
in this direction, if at all possible? Or at least think out loud a bit 
more before first.

My thoughts:

We've spent years getting Plone situated in a "nice" place within the 
Python community. To address the concerns of the ``plone.api`` folks and 
anyone that has trouble installing or developing add-ons for Plone, I 
would strongly recommend that we adhere very closely to "Python best 

Now, I completely understand Martin's motivation here and may personally 
be interested in trying plone-devstart.py to see what he has come up 
with. But I don't think, at least my gut reaction tells me, that a 
project-specific script is not what we need or want more of here[2].

Think about it this way: the Plone project has very ambitious goals with 
regard to CMS functionality, and a limited set of developers to 
accomplish those goals. We don't want those resources spent on Python 
module installation problems, if we can help it. Better to offload that 
problem to the worldwide community of Python folks IMHO for "free" support.


[1] Support: "pip install -r 4.2.x.txt Plone" ASAP. Failures with this 
process become "general Python failures" not "Plone specific failures". 
Don't have PIL? "pip install Pillow" and so on. Let requirements.txt 
equal versions.cfg in effect, and let's figure out how to build out a 
bunch of zcml slugs without buildout. (Actually, with Pillow, it's 
probably now "safe" to depend on it in the way we depend on Zope2. 
Installation problems have been practically eliminated for all major 
OSes. The only "gotcha" is C extensions, but Zope2 has those too. Oh and 
PIL's deps, but the Unified Installer includes those for its purposes 
and anyone that can type "pip install Plone" can probably type 
"{aptitude,brew,etc} install libjpeg-dev" and so on.)

[2] One exception may be if "pip install plone-devstart" were supported.

> The idea is that you can use this to instantiate a new development
> environment in a 'safe' way. It will perform some checks on your
> environment to determine the likelihood of success. It then installs a
> bunch of useful development tools, a basic deployment configuration, and
> creates a simple (non-reusable) package where you can put your custom
> Python code and templates.
> For now it lives here: https://github.com/plone/plone-devstart/
> It supports Plone 4.1, though I plan to add 4.2 support shortly.
> You can download the one file you need here:
> https://github.com/plone/plone-devstart/raw/master/plone-devstart.py
> I've tested as much as I can, but if this is to work out for a broader
> audience, we need lots of people to test. If you have a particularly
> messed up environment, I'd like to hear about it. :)
> Martin
> _______________________________________________
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> Product-Developers at lists.plone.org
> https://lists.plone.org/mailman/listinfo/plone-product-developers

Alex Clark · http://pythonpackages.com

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