If you want Python 2.6 support, pay me

This post is both about the actual plan for Hypothesis and also what I think you should do as a maintainer of a Python library.

Hypothesis supports Python 2.7 and will almost certainly continue doing so until it hits end of life in 2020.

Hypothesis does not support Python 2.6.

Could Hypothesis support Python 2.6? Almost certainly. It would be a bunch of work, but probably no more than a few weeks, maybe a month if things are worse than I expect. It would also slow down future development because I’d have to maintain compatibility with it, but not to an unbearable degree given that I’ve already got the machinery in place for multiple version compatibility.

I’m not going to do this though. I’m doing enough free labour as it is without supporting a version of Python that is only still viable because a company is charging for commercial support for it.

I’m sorry, I misspoke. What I meant to say is that I’m not going to do this for free.

If you were to pay me, say, £15,000 for development costs, I would be happy to commit to providing 2.6 support in a released version of Hypothesis, followed by one year in which there is a version that supports Python 2.6 and is getting active bug fixes (this would probably always be the latest version, but if I hit a blocker I might end up dropping 2.6 from the latest and providing patch releases for a previous minor version).

People who are still using Python 2.6 are generally large companies who are already paying for commercial support, so I think it’s perfectly reasonable to demand this of them.

And I think everyone developing open source Python who is considering supporting Python 2.6 should do this too. Multi version library development is hard enough as it is without supporting 2.6. Why should you work for free on something that you are really quite justified in asking for payment for?

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One thought on “If you want Python 2.6 support, pay me

  1. Pingback: Back-pedalling on Python 2.6 | David R. MacIver

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