I need to download Python to upload my project to Google App Engine. But I don't know which format to download:

  • Windows x86 MSI Installer (2.7.7)
  • Windows X86-64 MSI Installer (2.7.7)

Here's my system properties:

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You should download the Windows X86-64 MSI Installer (2.7.7) because your system is 64-bit. x64 uses a link register rather than pushing return addresses on the stack, so its a tad bit safer than its x86 counterparts. In addition, the x64 code will likely run a little faster.

For completeness, you could run both x86 and x64 on a 64-bit Windows machine. But the reverse does not hold true.

You might be able to install Python 3.4, too. But you have to be careful because Python broke some prominent features between 2.x and 3.x. If you get mysterious errors when using Python 3.x, you should try using Python 2.x (or run Python's 2to3 conversion program on the 2.x *.py source files). Google is very specific about the Python versions, and 3.x is not allowed. Its likely due to the Python 3 redesign and improvements that were not backwards-compatible.

  • 7
    Can you specify things that are clearly broken in 3.x, as opposed to redesigned and improved in a way that is not backwards-compatible?
    – Tom Zych
    Jun 21 '14 at 9:46
  • @Tom - same difference to a person who is not familiar with Python. They are going to run a 2.x source file with a 3.x interpreter, and things are not going to work. Could you imagine if the C language broke printf in C99???
    – jww
    Jun 21 '14 at 9:47
  • 5
    When dealing with someone new to Python, I think it's best to make it clear that the 3.x transition was not a case of breaking things, but rather a case of cleaning up the language and removing various ugly warts that had accumulated in 2.x. Granted that the transition has been difficult and met much resistance, but it doesn't serve new Python users to give them the impression that 3.x is broken.
    – Tom Zych
    Jun 21 '14 at 9:52
  • 1
    Tom and gronostaj - this fellow is probably not a Python programmer. His only interest is likely because he's been told he has to use it for Google App Engine. He probably does not want to be educated - he just wants things to work so he can get on with his Web App. I suffered the same when using Clang and its sanitizers (specifically, the asan_symbolize.py script). I did not want to spend time figuring out why Python was not working. I just wanted things to work so I could continue working on my C project.
    – jww
    Jun 21 '14 at 10:08
  • 2
    Say "changed" instead of "broke" and this discussion wouldn't have happened.
    – bjanssen
    Jun 21 '14 at 10:38

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