I know I’m rather late to this question, but the accepted answer doesn’t really reflect the common best practices from Python community members (and even less so from the Django community members.) While the outlined manual installation process does work, is is far more pains taking and error prone than the following:
You really should be using Pip. With Pip installing docutils system wide is as simple as:
$ sudo pip install docutils
This not only works for docutils but nearly any package on the ‘Cheese Shop‘ as well as many other code repositories (Github, Bitbucket, etc.)
To install Pip on Ubuntu/Debain I generally do the following:
$ sudo apt-get install python-pip
BTW: for virtualenv ‘sudo apt-get install python-virtualenv’ and for virtualenvwrapper ‘sudo apt-get install virtualenvwrapper’.
The key to the install is to use the curl utility. The following will install docutils:
curl -o docutils-docutils.tar.gz http://docutils.svn.sourceforge.net/viewvc/docutils/trunk/docutils/?view=tar
tar -xf docutils-docutils.tar
sudo python setup.py install
This performs the following steps: Create a directory to download docutils into. cd into the directory just made, and use curl to download the zipped version of docutils. Unzip the file which creates a subdirectory docutils. cd into that directory and install with root permissions.
If you are using Django you will have to restart Django for admindocs to start working.
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Although it is an old thread, I want to share the answer I found. To install type command
sudo apt install python-docutils
sudo apt install python3-docutils
This will install the dependencies too. Yesterday, I installed docutils using this command for Geany editor and it is working fine.