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Python Programming On Win32 by Mark Hammond, Andy Robinson

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Building Python Itself

There are occasions when it’s necessary or desirable to build Python itself from its sources. As mentioned previously, reasons may include wanting to build a debug version, or simply the satisfaction or security of knowing you can build your entire project from scratch.

The process is quite simple, and Python builds easily. The sources come with Visual C++ project and workspace files, and building is as simple as opening the workspace and starting the build.

The sources are available from http://www.python.org, usually in a file with the name pythxxx.tgz, where xxx is the version of Python. For example, Python 1.5.2 sources are available in pyth152.tgz. The .tgz file is a gzipped tar file and is understood by the ubiquitous WinZip program (http://www.winzip.com). Once you expand this archive into a suitable directory (be careful to maintain the directory structure when expanding), you should have a Python-1.5.2 directory with a number of subdirectories including PCBuild, Python, Modules, and so forth.

In the PCBuild directory you’ll find pcbuild.dsw; this is the Visual C++ workspace. Once opened, Visual C++ should look similar to Figure 22.7.

The Python sources ready to build
Figure 22.7. The Python sources ready to build

Depending on your requirements, you may wish to build some or all of the projects. At a minimum, you need to build the Python15 project that builds Python15.dll (or Python15_d.dll ...

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