Phillip Pearson - web + electronics notes

tech notes and web hackery from a new zealander who was vaguely useful on the web back in 2002 (see: python community server, the blogging ecosystem, the new zealand coffee review, the internet topic exchange).


Second bzero blog!

Congratulations to Doug Landauer, the first person to get bzero up and running!

Check out his new blog:

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Distributing Python apps

Rick asks how you go about distributing Python apps.

Good question. I'm not so sure yet.

For Linux, I'm distributing bzero as a tarball with a shell script that drops everything in /usr/lib/bzero. This requires that the user already has Python (and the right version, too) so it's not that great. A better way would be to build a copy of Python that runs in the current directory, and distribute it with your app. Either that or make a .deb or .rpm package for it, which will let you use dependencies.

For Windows, I'd use py2exe and Inno Setup. py2exe creates a single EXE file that includes the Python interpreter, your app, and all the libraries (including compiled ones) it depends on. Inno Setup makes a beautiful modern-looking Windows installer. Both apps are free (as in beer ... I think open source as well, not sure).
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bzero bugs fixed

I've just fixed the following bugs in bzero:

- Pathnames weren't coming out right on Windows, which meant it wouldn't get past the rendering stage. Now I'm using the right path manipulation functions (os.path.*) and a test on Windows just succeeded.

- Now it looks at the EDITOR and VISUAL environment variables under Unix instead of just /etc/alternatives/editor.

- Changed "True" and "False" to "1" and "0" so it works on older versions of Python.

- Added the VERSION file to the distribution so it won't fail the version check.

If you've been bitten by one of these, try downloading again. You might have better luck!
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Notes on bzero

It looks like the installer I pointed to the other day was pretty messed up. So if you've tried downloading it and the install failed miserably, or if you managed to get it installed but then it crashed immediately, please get in touch and I'll hook you up with a new version.

Did I mention? Beta testers wanted for a new Linux blogging package!
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