Broken Python 2.6 installation on Ubuntu Linux 8.04

Discussion in 'Python' started by John Ladasky, Jan 24, 2010.

  1. John Ladasky

    John Ladasky Guest

    Hello everyone,

    I've posted this same question over on ubuntuforums.org, so I'm trying
    to get help in all of the logical places.

    I'm running Ubuntu Linux 8.04 (Hardy) on a fairly new x86 box, with
    two hard disks in a software RAID 1 configuration.

    Hardy comes with Python 2.5 as a standard package, but not 2.6. I
    would really like to have the "combinations" function that is included
    with itertools in Python 2.6. I tried writing a combinations function
    of my own, but it's SLOW and uses a HUGE amount of memory.

    So, in my case the Linux Synaptic Package Manager cannot be used to
    install Python 2.6. I therefore attempted a manual installation. I
    downloaded the Linux tarball for Python 2.6 from python.org. I
    followed the installation instructions, and they appeared to execute
    fine. But when I started IDLE, I still had Python 2.5. No good.

    I do most of my editing in SCIte. Apparently SCIte knows that I have
    Python 2.6, and is trying to use it. Alas, my programs depend on extra
    Python packages such as biopython, numpy and matplotlib. My Python 2.6
    distro does not have these yet. None of my programs will run from
    SCIte!

    Looking down into the details of the install, I've discovered that
    Hardy placed the Python 2.4 and 2.5 executables in /usr/bin. My
    Python 2.6 installation ended up in /usr/local/bin. This may be
    contributing to my problems.

    Given the mess I've made by trying to just install plain-old Python, I
    don't know whether I should attempt to back out, or to press on. Can I
    convince IDLE to connect to Python 2.6? How do I manually install
    site packages?

    Alternately, I COULD upgrade my Ubuntu Linux to 9.4 (Jaunty) or 9.10
    (Karmic). Python 2.6 comes standard with both of these. But this is
    why I mentioned that my storage is RAID1. Apparently, upgrading with
    RAID present is a serious headache. The Linux wizards are supposed to
    be fixing these problems in the next release, due in April. I could
    wait, I suppose.

    In the mean time, I may have to uninstall Python 2.6 and get my 2.5
    running again. I have not found any instructions for how to do that.

    Help!
    John Ladasky, Jan 24, 2010
    #1
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  2. On Sun, Jan 24, 2010 at 5:53 PM, John Ladasky <> wrote:
    > Hello everyone,
    >
    > I've posted this same question over on ubuntuforums.org, so I'm trying
    > to get help in all of the logical places.
    >
    > I'm running Ubuntu Linux 8.04 (Hardy) on a fairly new x86 box, with
    > two hard disks in a software RAID 1 configuration.
    >
    > Hardy comes with Python 2.5 as a standard package, but not 2.6.  I
    > would really like to have the "combinations" function that is included
    > with itertools in Python 2.6.  I tried writing a combinations function
    > of my own, but it's SLOW and uses a HUGE amount of memory.
    >
    > So, in my case the Linux Synaptic Package Manager cannot be used to
    > install Python 2.6.  I therefore attempted a manual installation.  I
    > downloaded the Linux tarball for Python 2.6 from python.org.  I
    > followed the installation instructions, and they appeared to execute
    > fine.  But when I started IDLE, I still had Python 2.5.  No good.
    >


    How did you start IDLE? If you started it by going to the Applications
    menu, it still points to the Python 2.5 idle. If you open up a
    terminal and run idle, it should run Python 2.6. If it doesn't, make a
    ..bashrc file in your home directory and add the line
    "$PATH=/usr/local/bin:$PATH".

    > I do most of my editing in SCIte.  Apparently SCIte knows that I have
    > Python 2.6, and is trying to use it. Alas, my programs depend on extra
    > Python packages such as biopython, numpy and matplotlib. My Python 2.6
    > distro does not have these yet. None of my programs will run from
    > SCIte!


    Extensions written in C must be recompiled for every version of
    Python. Since you're using a version of Python not available through
    the package manager, your packages are also not available through
    that. You'll have to download the sources for those and compile them
    by hand to. This is why most people stick with the precompiled
    binaries.
    >
    > Looking down into the details of the install, I've discovered that
    > Hardy placed the Python 2.4 and 2.5 executables in /usr/bin.  My
    > Python 2.6 installation ended up in /usr/local/bin.  This may be
    > contributing to my problems.
    >


    It shouldn't be. /usr/local/bin should already be on your path in
    front of /usr/bin. If it isn't put it there (that's what the .bashrc
    file I listed before does)

    > Given the mess I've made by trying to just install plain-old Python, I
    > don't know whether I should attempt to back out, or to press on. Can I
    > convince IDLE to connect to Python 2.6?  How do I manually install
    > site packages?
    >


    Download the package sources and compile them yourself. Python
    packages have a very easy way to do that- just cd into the source
    folder and run "python setup.py install"

    > Alternately, I COULD upgrade my Ubuntu Linux to 9.4 (Jaunty) or 9.10
    > (Karmic).  Python 2.6 comes standard with both of these.  But this is
    > why I mentioned that my storage is RAID1.  Apparently, upgrading with
    > RAID present is a serious headache.  The Linux wizards are supposed to
    > be fixing these problems in the next release, due in April.  I could
    > wait, I suppose.
    >
    > In the mean time, I may have to uninstall Python 2.6 and get my 2.5
    > running again.  I have not found any instructions for how to do that.
    >


    Your Python2.5 installation is just fine. You can get to it by running
    python2.5 at the command line (as opposed to "python" which should run
    python2.6)

    > Help!
    > --
    > http://mail.python.org/mailman/listinfo/python-list
    >
    Benjamin Kaplan, Jan 24, 2010
    #2
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  3. John Ladasky

    John Ladasky Guest

    Thanks, Benjamin, I am getting a handle on this.

    I've written my own Python modules before, and have installed them
    using distutils. So I know that procedure. I just downloaded the
    Numpy 1.4.0 tarball, and I succeeded in installing it. A program I
    wrote which depends on numpy ran successfully from SCIte. I'll move
    on to matplotlib and biopython next.

    I also succeeded in running both the Python 2.6 and the Python 2.5
    interpreters from the terminal prompt as you suggested.

    Not sure whether I'll need to play with .bashrc yet.
    John Ladasky, Jan 25, 2010
    #3
  4. John Ladasky

    John Ladasky Guest

    On Jan 24, 3:52 pm, Christian Heimes <> wrote:

    > By the way you mustn't install your own Python with "make install", use
    > "make altinstall"! Your /usr/local/bin/python binary masks the original
    > python command in /usr/bin. You should remove all /usr/local/bin/py*
    > binaries that do not end with 2.6. Otherwise you may and will break
    > existing programs on your system.
    >
    > Christian


    Hello Christian,

    In my earlier response to Benjamin, I thought I was going to solve
    this problem quickly. Maybe not! I know for a fact that my Linux
    printer management program, HPLIP toolbox, uses wxPython. And now
    HPLIP won't start!

    However, my usr/local/bin ONLY contains references to Python 2.6. So
    I think this is a problem with me installing wx... see this other
    post...


    http://groups.google.com/group/comp.soft-sys.wxwindows/msg/f33e245eb0956067


    Sigh. All this, just so I could use some itertools functions.
    John Ladasky, Jan 25, 2010
    #4
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