For anyone familiar with python and easy_install, Amazon Linux uses “yum” as its easy installation system, and it is possible to install “pip” and “easy_install” to install new python packages.
As I’ve tried to install new software on my box, I’ve found lots and lots of references to sudo-apt as the standard way to install software where you’re using the Ubuntu flavour of Linux. As an FYI, Amazon Linux is based on Red Hat Linux (so sudo-apt doesn’t work with an Amazon Linux EC2 box).
Here’s a list of handy stuff to install (thanks to this post for a good starting point) :
yum install unixODBC-devel yum install gcc-gfortran yum install gcc-c++ yum install readline-devel yum install libpng-devel libX11-devel libXt-devel yum install texinfo-tex yum install tetex-dvips yum install docbook-utils-pdf yum install cairo-devel yum install java-1.6.0-openjdk-devel yum install libxml2-devel yum install mysql yum install mysql-server yum install mysql-devel
pip is a replacement for easy_install. It mostly uses the same techniques for finding packages, so packages that are easy_installable should be pip-installable as well. This means that you can use pip install SomePackage instead of easy_install SomePackage.
I’ve found that pip tends to be easier to use than easy_install, and more reliable (based on where it installs packages to) so would recommend pip as the best way to install packages for Python. This link shows you how to install it. I installed it from source onto EC2.