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Protocol Buffers - Google's data interchange format
Copyright 2008 Google Inc.
This directory contains the Python Protocol Buffers runtime library.
Normally, this directory comes as part of the protobuf package, available
The complete package includes the C++ source code, which includes the
Protocol Compiler (protoc). If you downloaded this package from PyPI
or some other Python-specific source, you may have received only the
Python part of the code. In this case, you will need to obtain the
Protocol Compiler from some other source before you can use this
Development Warning
The Python implementation of Protocol Buffers is not as mature as the C++
and Java implementations. It may be more buggy, and it is known to be
pretty slow at this time. If you would like to help fix these issues,
join the Protocol Buffers discussion list and let us know!
1) Make sure you have Python 2.6 or newer. If in doubt, run:
$ python -V
2) If you do not have setuptools installed, note that it will be
downloaded and installed automatically as soon as you run
If you would rather install it manually, you may do so by following
the instructions on this page:
3) Build the C++ code, or install a binary distribution of protoc. If
you install a binary distribution, make sure that it is the same
version as this package. If in doubt, run:
$ protoc --version
4) Build and run the tests:
$ python build
$ python google_test
If you want to build/test c++ implementation, run:
$ python build --cpp_implementation
$ python google_test --cpp_implementation
If some tests fail, this library may not work correctly on your
system. Continue at your own risk.
Please note that there is a known problem with some versions of
Python on Cygwin which causes the tests to fail after printing the
error: "sem_init: Resource temporarily unavailable". This appears
to be a bug either in Cygwin or in Python:
We do not know if or when it might me fixed. We also do not know
how likely it is that this bug will affect users in practice.
5) Install:
$ python install
$ python install --cpp_implementation
This step may require superuser privileges.
NOTE: To use C++ implementation, you need to install C++ protobuf runtime
library of the same version and export the environment variable before this
step. See the "C++ Implementation" section below for more details.
The complete documentation for Protocol Buffers is available via the
web at:
C++ Implementation
The C++ implementation for Python messages is built as a Python extension to
improve the overall protobuf Python performance.
To use the C++ implementation, you need to:
1) Install the C++ protobuf runtime library, please see instructions in the
parent directory.
2) Export an environment variable:
You need to export this variable before running script to build and
install the extension. You must also set the variable at runtime, otherwise
the pure-Python implementation will be used. In a future release, we will
change the default so that C++ implementation is used whenever it is available.
It is strongly recommended to run `python test` after setting the
variable to "cpp", so the tests will be against C++ implemented Python