Re: [Rfc-markdown] [xml2rfc-dev] [xml2rfc] End of support for xml2rfc on Python 2.x is coming soon

Henrik Levkowetz <> Tue, 08 October 2019 22:23 UTC

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Subject: Re: [Rfc-markdown] [xml2rfc-dev] [xml2rfc] End of support for xml2rfc on Python 2.x is coming soon
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Hi Fred,

On 2019-10-08 23:47, Fred Baker wrote:
> That all fine, and as predictable as you say. What would very helpful
> would be a road map: if you’re using {windows X|Mac X|Linux
> X|whatever}, we think you should look at tools {D,E,F}.
> Speaking personally, I am on a Mac and using XMLmind with Fenner’s
> tools. They mostly worked (note the past tense) except when they
> didn’t. Telling me “well, ABCDEF supports <IETF tools du jour if you
> can read Sanskrit>“ doesn’t quite work.
> I used to write in NROFF. I’ll do what it takes. But really?

I'm sorry if the text wasn't clear enough.  The roadmap is this:  Please
install Python 3.5 or higher on your system, and install coming versions
of xml2rfc using the 'pip3' command which is part of that Python install.

When we got to the xml2rfc 3.0.0 release, I had planned to update the
release note with the information about using pip3, but I'm perfectly
happy saying it now, too.

Of course, if your default python is Python 3.5 or higher already, then
using plain 'pip' to install will continue to work.

Best regards,


> Sent using a machine that autocorrects in interesting ways...
>> On Oct 8, 2019, at 2:31 PM, Russ Housley <> wrote:
>> Heads up!
>> With the transition to xml2rfc vocabulary version 3, xml2rfc has gained
>> the ability to generate PDF output when the necessary system libraries
>> are installed.  However, xml2rfc runs on Python 2.7, but the library
>> needed for PDF generation ended support for Python 2.7 about 10
>> releases ago.  This means that the need to end support for xml2rfc on
>> Python 2.7 is becoming urgent.  Another factor is that bugfix support
>> for Python 2.7.x itself officially stops on 1 January 2020, so we need
>> to transition away from Python 2.7 soon in any case.
>> The latest xml2rfc release is 2.32.0.  There will most likely be one or
>> two additional xml2rfc releases in the 2.x series, but after that, the
>> plan is to transition to a 3.x release series, with two major changes:
>> (1) xml2rfc will no longer run under Python 2.7; it will require
>>    Python 3.5 or higher.  If you cannot install and run Python 3 on
>>    your system, the web service at can be used.
>> (2) The default output formatters will change to v3.  The v2 formatters
>>    will still be available by using a --legacy switch.
>> Expect the first xml2rfc 3.x series release before the end of the month.
>> On behalf of the Tools Team,
>>  Russ
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