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Backwards-incompatible changes in EasyBuild v5.0

(for a full overview of changes in EasyBuild v5.0, see here)

A number of backwards-incompatible changes are being made in EasyBuild v5.0:

Support for Python 2.7 is removed, Python 3.6+ is required

EasyBuild 5.0 requires Python >= 3.6 to run.

Running EasyBuild with Python 2.7 or a Python 3 version older than Python 3.6 is no longer supported.

Trying to run EasyBuild with a Python version that is too old will result in an error:

ERROR: No compatible 'python' command found via $PATH (EasyBuild requires Python 3.6+)

Python 2.7 has been end-of-life since 1 Jan 2020, and dropping compatibility with Python 2.7 and Python 3.5 enabled some significant code cleanup (see easybuild-framework PR #4229).

The results of the 6th EasyBuild User Survey (2022) show that the impact of this breaking change on the EasyBuild community should be very limited, since:

  • Only ~13% of survey participants were still running EasyBuild on top of Python 2.7;
  • No survey participants reported using Python 3.5;
  • Over 85% of survey participants reported using Python 3.6, or a more recent version of Python 3;
  • Only 3 out of 118 survey participants (~2.5%) reported that dropping support for running EasyBuild on top of Python 2 would be problematic for them;

Along with actively removing code that was only required to retain compatibility with Python 2.7 or 3.5, the module that was introduced to facilitate supporting both Python 2.7 and Python 3 has been deprecated (see also here).

Deprecated EasyBuild bootstrap script is removed

The EasyBuild bootstrap script has been removed (see easybuild-framework PR #4233).

Please see the installation page for the suggested methods for installing EasyBuild.

Experimental support for the .yeb easyconfig format is removed

Support for the experimental .yeb easyconfig format has been removed (see easybuild-framework PR #4237).

This format allowed easyconfigs to be specified in YAML. However, there has been no recent development of this format and little suggestion that anyone was using it at all.