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Problems installing Python 2.3 with Tkinter linked to Tcl/Tk 8.4

I have just installed Python 2.3.3, after first installing Tcl/Tk
8.4.6.

After successful installation of Tcl/Tk (including passing configure
the '--enable-shared' option), and testing both Tcl and Tk, I
unpacked Python2.3 and began a frustrating installation. After
standard configuration, make told me it was renaming module _tkinter
because the module was not found (sorry I am omitting the exact
warning message) - I don't understand that completely, but that was
what it said. So I then edited the Setup file in Python2.3/Modules/
so that it would 1) include _tkinter, 2) look for tkinter in
/usr/local/lib, 3) look for tk.h in /usr/local/include, 4) find X11,
and 5) look for libtk8.4 and libtcl8.4.

So I went through make and it told me that libtk8.4.so could not be
opened. The file existed with read and execute privileges for all in
/usr/local/lib, so I was perplexed.

I then found a single helpful explanation (among many completely
misleading ones) at
http://www.talkaboutprogramming.com/...es/290343.html
(which is for Fedora, but works well with RH 8.0.

However, upon having written the script that it suggests, and
deleting the /usr/local/bin/python, I realized that idle was broken.
Also, scripts could not be executed with the sh-bang line at top if
written for Python 2.3. So I moved python2.3 over to python again,
and realized that idle still wouldn't work because Python will not
look for Tcl/Tk where it installs by default.

Is there a better solution than the one I followed? If not, is there
a plan for generalizing the Python Tkinter installation so that it
will look for Tcl/Tk instead of assuming that it knows where it is? I
found it messy enough having to deal with multiple Python
installations due to RedHat's reliance on old versions, and this is
simply a show-stopper when it comes to recommending Python to others.

I have to wonder if I am doing something very wrong, but I have no
idea where my mistake would be. If nothing else, others with this
problem may see this post and at least have a temporary fix.

- Jeremy


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Jul 18 '05 #1
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