Installing pip packages to $HOME folder

Each Answer to this Q is separated by one/two green lines.

Is it possible? When installing pip, install the python packages inside my $HOME folder. (for example, I want to install mercurial, using pip, but inside $HOME instead of /usr/local)

I’m with a mac machine and just thought about this possibility, instead of “polluting” my /usr/local, I would use my $HOME instead.

PEP370 is exactly about this. Is just creating a ˜/.local and do a pip install package enough to make these packages to be installed only at my $HOME folder?

While you can use a virtualenv, you don’t need to. The trick is passing the PEP370 --user argument to the setup.py script. With the latest version of pip, one way to do it is:

pip install --user mercurial

This should result in the hg script being installed in $HOME/.local/bin/hg and the rest of the hg package in $HOME/.local/lib/pythonx.y/site-packages/.

Note, that the above is true for Python 2.6. There has been a bit of controversy among the Python core developers about what is the appropriate directory location on Mac OS X for PEP370-style user installations. In Python 2.7 and 3.2, the location on Mac OS X was changed from $HOME/.local to $HOME/Library/Python. This might change in a future release. But, for now, on 2.7 (and 3.2, if hg were supported on Python 3), the above locations will be $HOME/Library/Python/x.y/bin/hg and $HOME/Library/Python/x.y/lib/python/site-packages.

I would use virtualenv at your HOME directory.

$ sudo easy_install -U virtualenv
$ cd ~
$ virtualenv .
$ bin/pip ...

You could then also alter ~/.(login|profile|bash_profile), whichever is right for your shell to add ~/bin to your PATH and then that pip|python|easy_install would be the one used by default.

You can specify the -t option (--target) to specify the destination directory. See pip install --help for detailed information. This is the command you need:

pip install -t path_to_your_home package-name

for example, for installing say mxnet, in my $HOME directory, I type:

pip install -t /home/foivos/ mxnet

Short answer to your two questions grabbed from the other answers

One

Yes

it is possible installing pip packages to $HOME instead of /usr/local/lib/, but

Two

mkdir ˜/.local # then
pip install package 

is not enough.

You need

pip install package --user

and the packages get installed to

/home/user/.local/lib/python3.x/site-packages

Exception when you do not need --user

  • if you are not root user
  • On Debian together with Wsl – Windows Subsystem Linux no notice
  • On Ubuntu 20.04 notice default to user installation because normal site-packages not writeable – default config is /usr/lib not writeable for other users except root


The answers/resolutions are collected from stackoverflow, are licensed under cc by-sa 2.5 , cc by-sa 3.0 and cc by-sa 4.0 .

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