Genericf2Py Demostrates How To Handle Fortran Binaries In Python Modules.
See the Code at: https://github.com/sonofeft/GenericF2PY
See the Docs at: http://genericf2py.readthedocs.org/en/latest/
See PyPI page at:https://pypi.python.org/pypi/genericf2py
GenericF2PY has the following goals:
- Support a variety of platforms Windows/Linux/MacOS/etc.
- Support a variety of python distributions (2 & 3).
- Support both 32 & 64 bit installations.
Based on my experience developing GenericF2PY, I believe the best way to achieve the above goals is:
- Distribute only source code (Python & FORTRAN).
- Provide guidance for setting up f2py on the user’s platform.
- Recommend users install with “pip install <packagename>”.
- Provide guidance for correcting any error messages.
When binary distributions install properly, they are the most convenient approach for users… HOWEVER…
When binary distributions fail, they can be confounding for many users and greatly impede or even preclude the use of your project for those users.
The sheer difficulty of maintaining binaries for all possible systems can become overwhelming.
Binary distributions can fail for a variety of reasons:
- Compiled against wrong version of numpy
- Missing or wrong version of system libraries
- Environment variable problems (PATH, LIBRARY_PATH, CC, GCC, etc.)
- Security Restrictions
- Unknown Unknowns
It is for these reasons, that I recommend distributing source code only.
I’m weighing the user’s difficulty of installing f2py against the user’s difficulty of debugging your potentially failed binary distribution and deciding that installing f2py is the smaller burden. Also, the user can Google f2py and find answers. You will be the user’s only source of information on your binaries for all possible systems.
If you want to make binary distributions available, it might be best to either:
- create binary wheels in a Github pip-wheels directory
- provide an option to install from source code.
Users can be directed to that Github pip-wheels directory or given source-install instructions as required.
- FORTRAN Module(s)
- User Instructions
- Install gfortran