I've been intrigued by Stackless Python for a while, and
finally got around to installing it one one of my machines. FreeBSD doesn't have a port available, so after creating an ezjail
to isolate the installation, it was just a matter of fetching and extracting stackless-251-export.tar.bz2 and doing a standard ./configure && make && make install
The installation looks pretty much like a normal Python installation on FreeBSD, with a /usr/local/bin/python binary and libraries in /usr/local/lib/python2.5
Networking is something I especially wanted to check out with Stackless, and the examples on the Stackless website mostly make use of a stacklesssocket.py module which is a separate download. That module has unittests built in as the module's main function, but when running it on my FreeBSD 7.0-CURRENT box, it died with an exception ending in:
File "stacklesssocket.py.ok", line 286, in handle_connect
AttributeError: 'NoneType' object has no attribute 'send'
after doing some digging, I found that stacklesssocket.py has a dispatcher class which is a subclass of a class by the same name in Python's asyncore.py module. stacklesssocket.dispatcher.connect() calls asyncore.dispatcher.connect() which may directly call the object's handle_connect() method before returning back to stacklesssocket.dispatcher.connect(). However stacklesssocket.dispatcher.connect() doesn't setup that channel until after the call to asyncore.dispatcher.connect() returns. So when handle_connect() tries to send a message over a channel that doesn't exist yet, an exception is raised.
This trivial patch seems to fix the problem - only sending a message over the channel if it exists (which should only happen if there's another tasklet waiting on it back in a stacklesssocket.dispatcher.connect() method).
--- stacklesssocket.py.orig 2007-09-18 20:58:02.000835000 -0500+++ stacklesssocket.py 2007-09-18 22:03:13.370709131 -0500@@ -282,7 +282,7 @@
# Inform the blocked connect call that the connection has been made.
- if self.socket.type != SOCK_DGRAM:+ if (self.socket.type != SOCK_DGRAM) and self.connectChannel:
# Asyncore says its done but self.readBuffer may be non-empty
With that patch, the unittests run successfully - at least on my box.
Going to PyCon 2007
I've got my plane ticket, hotel reservation and conference registration for PyCon 2007 all lined up, so I'll be headed for Texas in 6 weeks.
I just updated Exim on my home server to 4.63, and built it with my py-exim-localscan (AKA expy) module linked to Python 2.5
Only minor glitch was a C compile warning, that's probably due to better warnings in a newer version of GCC than what I had when the package was originally developed. I fixed it and bundled up a new release - mainly to assure that it's not abandonware.
Haven't posted anything in a while, because I've been redoing this site in Django. Previously I had a photo-gallery written as a direct mod_python app, the software part was Zope 2.x, and this blog was in PyBlosxom.
mod_python is pretty bare-bones (as it should be), and I've been down on Zope for some time now. PyBlosxom was nice, but I've become quite a Django fan, and felt I could do much more with that framework. So I figured it would be good to do a kind of unification - and learn some more Django at the same time.
I'm using Markdown for editing the bodies of blog entries now, and found it was pretty easy to transfer the old PyBlosxom files into Django database records, with Markdown mostly able to handle the HTML I had entered for those old entries with just a few minor tweaks.
The Django URLs were planned so that Apache would be able to rewrite the old PyBlosxom URLs into the new format - so hopefully existing links will still work. URLs for the old feeds should be handled transparently, but I'm omitting the old entries from the feeds because their links had changed, and didn't want them to reappear as new entries for whoever's subscribed to them.
Returned from PyCon
Got back from PyCon 2006, in mostly
one piece. Picked up a terrible cold at the conference, I suppose scrounging
food off the same buffet tables as 400 other people wasn't the most hygenic
thing in the world.
Attended the mainly web-oriented sessions, came away very impressed with
Django. I had sort of blown
it off before because I didn't like the look of the templating language, and
the ORM seemed weird. But after seeing what's coming in the
Removing the Magic
branch, I think it will be much much nicer. Was even inspired to spend the little time
I had there Monday morning and afternoon sprinting with the Django guys, but I don't see
how one can sprint effectively in such a short time with the limited knowledge of the codebase I
had. Maybe if I go next year ... and I know more Django ... and can spend more than a day there,
then I could accomplish something useful during the time.
The TurboGears guys demonstrated some nice
things with AJAX widgets, but the SQLObject
part of TG has given me trouble in the past when working with an existing DB, and seems to get in the way more
than it helps. Even so, the TG guys, and Ian Bicking seemed pretty cool, so I hope they polish things
up a bit more. Maybe SQLObject 2 will be the answer, or maybe
a switch to SQLAlchemy (which wasn't represented at the conference),
would make TG a nicer environment to work in.
I've been struggling with Zope for some years now.
From a user standpoint I guess it's OK, from a programmer standpoint it's a nightmare,
both 2.x and 3.x. The documentation and community attitude have rubbed me wrong for
a long time. I attended a couple Zope sessions at the conference, but didn't hear
anything to inspire me to keep up with it. I'll probably switch what little Zope things
I have going to Django/TurboGears/CherryPy/whatever.
The PyParsing presentation on writing an
adventure game was interesting, wish I could have attended the more in-depth one but it
conflicted with a Django session. PyParsing looks to make a hard job pretty easy, and
I'd love to play with it somewhere.
The party at NerdBooks had some decent food, they
had a pretty deep selection of books, and the prices on some of the things I looked up were
much better than Amazon. Will definitely look there next time I need something.
Lastly, I hope Django or someone who was at the sprint uses the codename "Vacuum Assassin"
somewhere. That would just be too cool.
Running PyBlosxom through SCGI
Out of curiosity, ran the Apache Benchmark program ab on the plain CGI installation of PyBlosxom on my little server (-n 100 -c 10), and got around 1.5 requests/second. Decided to give SCGI a try, and got some better results.
Went about this based on what I had read in Deploying TurboGears
with Lighttpd and SCGI. Tried Lighttpd at first, and it mostly worked, but I've got an Apache setup right now,
so wanted to stick with that for the moment (and it seems a bit quicker anyhow). Basically started by
loading flup with easy_install.
Copied the config.py and wsgi_app.py files from the PyBlosxom distribution
into a directory, and added this little script into that same directory:
Notice how the scriptName and bindAddress parameters in the Python code
are matched in the SCGIMount Apache directive. With this setup, running the same
ab benchmark yields about 10 to 15 requests/second - not too bad. Running the threaded SCGI
server (remove the _fork from the first import line) wasn't as good, only 3 or 8 requests/second.
The setup seems a bit shaky in that the benchmark values seem to keep decreasing with every run,
especially in the threaded mode. So there may be some problems in my setup or in flup/scgi/pyblosxom_wsgi.
Even if it was working fine, SCGI is probably overkill for
running PyBlosxom when you're not expecting a lot of traffic. And if you were, you'd probably
run it with --static to generate static pages. But it was a reasonable
thing to fool with for the day when you want to run a more dynamic WSGI app.
Going to PyCon 2006
Found out this week that I get to attend PyCon 2006 on my employer's dime. Never been to anything like this before, so it should be interesting. Probably will attend the more web-related presentations.
Going to give PyBlosxom a try, seems like a pretty simple system for throwing together a simple blog. Right now simple sounds pretty good. A lot of the Python-related blogs I normally end up seeing seem to use this software, so I figure it can't be too bad. Things like Zope/Plone/Turbogears seem like way overkill for just a simple one-person setup.
I'm kind of interested in the idea of a blog as a resume, so I'll try to write down some of the things I've worked on or figured out.
Previously, I've put some things on Advogato, however
I always felt a bit guilty entering items that were too lengthy or not interesting enough for other readers. I guess that doesn't stop most bloggers, but at least on my own server I feel I can abuse it as much as I want.