02: Installing Python for Mac OS X / Windows
- Know how to install python on your own machine
- Know how to find where python is currently installed
- This will become a table of contents (this text will be scraped).
It’s important not to skip steps. That is all.
We will use
anaconda for simplicity. You can do what you like but I’ve installed
python in lots of different ways on Linux, Mac and Windows and
anaconda is by far the most straightforward for beginners.
Make sure you tick the bit that asks you if you want to add anaconda to your
PATH in the advanced settings. Otherwise you won’t be able to just run
python nicely from the
Google something like “How to install anaconda Windows” and follow the guide.
Mac OS X
Macs are a bit annoying in that you can’t simply uninstall things nicely. To get around this we use
homewbrew which is a package manager for Mac OS X.
Google something like “installing hombrew mac os x” and at the time of writing it should take you to https://brew.sh/ with a line of code that you copy and paste into
Normally sholdn’t ever run code you don’t understand but this code is pretty legit.
You must install
anaconda via the
Terminal and so we use
brew to install
Therefore, google something like “install anaconda brew mac os x” (Note: You don’t want the graphical installer!!) I found this link decent at the time of writing.
python to your
PATH for Mac OS X
In Mac OS X you’ll need to add the location of your
python installation into a special file that is ran when the
To do this we use a command to create a file if it doesn’t exist
1 touch ~/.bash_profile
~/ is a shortcut for your root user file or home directory. On Windows this is
C: \ users \ yourname. The
. at the beginning just denotes a hidden file.
We can then add the
PATH to the python executable to this file by (please don’t just copy this and run it - you are required to fill in the blanks!)
1 echo 'export PATH=/path/to/your/conda/bin:"$PATH"' >> ~/.bash_profile
Note that at the time of writing the
/usr/local/anaconda3/bin. This command adds the line
export PATH=/path/to/your/conda/bin:"$PATH" to the file
~/.bash_profile by writing the output of the command
echo to the file specified after the operator
>> whcih signifies that you want to redirect the output and append to a file. For more information see here
If you ever have weird things happen in the future when using
brew check out https://hashrocket.com/blog/posts/keep-anaconda-from-constricting-your-homebrew-installs
Exercise 2.1: Verifying your
This exercise shows you how to debug a fairly common issue where users are running a different
python executable to the one that they just installed.
python is your system default
1 Get-Command python
On Mac OS X
1 which python
Exercise 2.2: Verifying your
This exercise helps you check your python version. Another source of confusion for some beginners.
Check you have python 3.6.5 or greater
1 python --version
If you don’t get
"Python 3.x.x :: Anaconda, Inc." for
python 3.6.5 or greater than seek help / reinstall.
Exercise 2.3: Running a
.py file in
This exercise aims to show you how python files can be executed from the command line.
Run the file