Python Virtual Environments and Packages | Python 3 Packages Tutorial

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The Python Virtual Environments and Packages | Python 3 Packages Tutorial With Examples. Here in this blog post Coding compiler sharing a Python 3 virtual environments and packages tutorial for beginners. This Python tutorial is for beginners and intermediate learners who are looking to master in Python programming. Experienced Python programmers also can refer this tutorial to brush-up their Python 3 programming skills. Let’s start learning Python 3.

Python Virtual Environments and Packages

Let’s discuss in detail about each subtopic of Python virtual environment and packages.

  1. Python Virtual Environments and Packages Introduction
  2. Creating a Virtual Environment
  3. Using the pip Management Pack

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1. Python Virtual Environments and Packages Introduction

Python applications often use packages and modules that are not part of the standard library. An application sometimes needs a particular version of a library because it requires a specific bug that has been fixed in the library or it is written using an interface to an outdated version of the library.

This means that it may not be possible to install a Python to meet the requirements of each application. If application A requires a version 1.0 of a particular module but application B requires version 2.0 of the module, the requirements of the two applications are conflicting. Installing version 1.0 or version 2.0 will cause one of the applications to fail.

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The solution to this problem is to create a virtual environment (commonly referred to as “virtualenv”), it contains a specific version of Python, as well as a separate directory tree some additional packages.

Different applications can use different virtual environments. In order to resolve the conflict in the previous example, Application A can have its own virtual environment with version 1.0 of the specific module installed. Application B has another virtual environment with a specific module version 2.0 installed. If Application B requires a library upgrade to 3.0, this will not affect the environment of Application A.

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2. Creating a Virtual Environment

The script for creating and managing virtual environments is called pyvenv . Pyvenv will usually install the latest version of Python available to you. This script can also specify the installation of a specific version of Python, so if there are multiple versions of Python on your system, you can run pyvenv-3.5or any version you want to select a specific version of Python.

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To create a virtualenv, first determine the directory you want to store and run pyvenv followed by the directory name:

pyvenv tutorial-env

If the directory does not exist, it will create a tutorial-envdirectory, and also create a directory containing Python interpreter, the standard library, and Python “copy” of a variety of supporting documents.

Once you have created a virtual environment, you must activate it.

On Windows, run:


On Unix or MacOS, run:

source tutorial-env/bin/activate

(The bash shell script is written in. If you are using csh or FISH shell, you should use activate.cshand activate.fishinstead.)

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Activate the virtual environment will change your shell prompt, display a virtual environment you are using, and modify the environment so that operation pythonwill allow you to get a specific version of Python. E.g:

-> source ~/envs/tutorial-env/bin/activate
(tutorial-env) -> python
Python 3.5.2+ (3.4:c7b9645a6f35+, May 22 2015, 09:31:25)
>>> import sys
>>> sys.path
['', '/usr/local/lib/', ...,

3. Using the pip Management Pack

Once you have activated a virtual environment, you can use a program called pip to install, upgrade, and delete packages. By default pipit will be the Package Index from the Python, < >, installation package.

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You can view them through a web browser, or you can use pipa limited search function:

(tutorial-env) -> pip search astronomy
skyfield               - Elegant astronomy for Python
gary                   - Galactic astronomy and gravitational dynamics.
novas                  - The United States Naval Observatory NOVAS astronomy library
astroobs               - Provides astronomy ephemeris to plan telescope observations
PyAstronomy            - A collection of  astronomy  related  tools  for  Python . 

pipThere are many subcommands: “Search”, “Install”, “Uninstall”, “Freeze” (Translator’s Note: The phrase is temporarily not suitable for translation), and so on.

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You can install the latest version of a package by specifying the package name:

-> pip install novas
Collecting novas
  Downloading novas- (136kB)
Installing collected packages: novas
  Running install for novas
Successfully installed novas-

You can also install a specific version of the package, followed by the package name given later ==and version number:

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-> pip install requests==2.6.0
Collecting requests==2.6.0
  Using cached requests-2.6.0-py2.py3-none-any.whl
Installing collected packages: requests
Successfully installed requests-2.6.0

If you re-run the command (pip install requests==2.6.0), pipyou will notice that the required version is already installed and will not do anything.

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You can also provide a different version number to install or run to upgrade to the latest version of the package:pip install --upgrade

-> pip install --upgrade requests
Collecting requests
Installing collected packages: requests
  Found existing installation: requests 2.6.0
    Uninstalling requests-2.6.0:
      Successfully uninstalled requests-2.6.0
Successfully installed requests-2.7.0

pip uninstall Subsequent to one or more package names will remove these packages from the virtual environment.

pip show The information for a specified package will be displayed:

(tutorial-env) -> pip show requests
Metadata-Version: 2.0
Name: requests
Version: 2.7.0
Summary: Python HTTP for Humans.
Author: Kenneth Reitz
License: Apache 2.0
Location: /Users/akuchling/envs/tutorial-env/lib/python3.4/site-packages

pip list All packages installed in the virtual environment will be listed:

(tutorial-env) -> pip list
novas (
numpy (1.9.2)
pip (7.0.3)
requests (2.7.0)
setuptools (16.0)

pip freezeIt will generate a list of similar packages need to be installed, but the output is the desired format. Common practice is to put them in a file:pip installrequirements.txt

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(tutorial-env) -> pip freeze > requirements.txt
(tutorial-env) -> cat requirements.txt

requirements.txtCan be submitted to version control and as part of an application. Users can use to install all the necessary packages:install -r

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-> pip install -r requirements.txt
Collecting novas== (from -r requirements.txt (line 1))
Collecting numpy==1.9.2 (from -r requirements.txt (line 2))
Collecting requests==2.7.0 (from -r requirements.txt (line 3))
Installing collected packages: novas, numpy, requests
  Running install for novas
Successfully installed novas- numpy-1.9.2 requests-2.7.0

pipThere are more options. Please refer to the installing-index guide for information about pipthe document intact. When you write a package and it also appears in the Python Package Index, refer to the distributing-index guide.

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