matplotlib upgrade 0.52->0.53.1

The same trick should (hopefully) get 0.53.1 to work: get

    > rid of the old matplotlib in site-packages before
    > installing a new one. Probably some files from 0.52 are
    > screwing up 0.53.1.

    > (This is a limitation of Python's distutils -- upgrades
    > should really wipe the package out of site-packages rather
    > than adding files.)

I did some testing by successively installing 0.53.1 and then my CVS
tree comparing a file in site-packages/matplotlib that I knew had
changed in the two versions. New files do indeed replace old files,
but it appears only if their time stamps are newer.

So if I install the 0.53.1 tree to a clean site-packages and then the
CVS tree, the file ( is updated (both dirs have clean
build directories). If I then go back the 0.53.1 and flush the build
dir and reinstall, the *.so files are installed to site-packages
(these are freshly built and so have new time stamps), but the *.py
files are not, presumably because they are older than the ones in

I don't know why you encountered trouble Jim because you were
upgrading in the right direction (screwy system clock, something about
how and when you unarchived the different versions?) but this
definitely explains why your attempt to downgrade failed.

But Andrew is definitely right: when in doubt I do

  > sudo rm -rf /usr/local/lib/python2.3/site-packages/matplotlib
  > sudo rm -rf build

before installing.

I checked distutils and there does not seem to be any flag you can set
to guarantee a clean install.