The  IDLEfork  Project

" just like IDLE, only crunchy "


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The IDLEfork project has been completed!

NOTE: Python 2.3 users should use IDLE, not IDLEfork!

The IDLEfork project was an official experimental development fork of Python's small, light, 'bundled' integrated development environment, IDLE.

The objective was to develop a version of IDLE which had an execution environment which could be initialized prior to each run of user code.

The IDLEfork project was initiated by David Scherer, with some help from Peter Schneider-Kamp and Nicholas Riley. David wrote the first version of the RPC code and designed a fast turn-around environment for VPython. Guido van Rossum developed the RPC code and Remote Debugger currently integrated in IDLE. Bruce Sherwood contributed considerable time testing and suggesting improvements.

Besides David and Guido, the main developers who have been active on IDLEfork are Stephen M. Gava, who implemented the configuration GUI, the new configuration system, and the About dialog, and Kurt B. Kaiser, who completed the integration of the RPC and remote debugger, implemented the threaded subprocess, and made a number of usability enhancements.

Other contributors include Raymond Hettinger, Tony Lownds (Mac integration), Neal Norwitz (code check and clean-up), and Chui Tey (RPC integration, debugger integration and persistent breakpoints).

Scott David Daniels, Hernan Foffani, Christos Georgiou, Martin v. Löwis, Jason Orendorff, Noam Raphael, Josh Robb, Nigel Rowe, and Bruce Sherwood have submitted useful patches. Thanks, guys!

For additional details refer to NEWS.txt and Changelog.

On June 29, 2003 the IDLEfork code base (rev 0.9b1) was merged back into Python. Its location in the Python source tree was moved from .../Tools/idle to .../Lib/idlelib, and the IDLEfork project went into bugfix mode.

Future Plans

IDLEfork was targeted to Python 2.2 (>= 2.2.1). When it was merged into Python, the subprocess main thread interrupt code became part of Python's thread module and IDLE once more was coded in pure Python. However, that means that the version of IDLE in Python 2.3 will not work in Python 2.2.

To support Python 2.2 users, IDLEfork will be maintained in bugfix mode until the number of downloads shows that the users have moved on to Python 2.3.

It's also possible that beta versions of IDLE (for Python >= 2.3) may occasionally be posted on the IDLEfork download area.

How To Contribute

Everyone interested in the future development of IDLE is invited to contribute by means of discussion, bug reports and patches.

Discussion of development for IDLE is carried out on the idle-dev mailing list at the Python Language Website. Subscription information for idle-dev can be found here. The archives of the idle-dev list can be perused here.

Bug Reports

IDLE uses the Python Bug Tracking facility provided by SourceForge. It can be found here.


The Python Patch Tracker can be found here..