Can you simply delete the directory from your python installation, or are there any lingering files that you must delete?

It varies based on the options that you pass to install and the contents of the distutils configuration files on the system/in the package. I don’t believe that any files are modified outside of directories specified in these ways.

Notably, distutils does not have an uninstall command at this time.

It’s also noteworthy that deleting a package/egg can cause dependency issues – utilities like easy_install attempt to alleviate such problems.

The three things that get installed that you will need to delete are:

  1. Packages/modules
  2. Scripts
  3. Data files

Now on my linux system these live in:

  1. /usr/lib/python2.5/site-packages
  2. /usr/bin
  3. /usr/share

But on a windows system they are more likely to be entirely within the Python distribution directory. I have no idea about OSX except it is more likey to follow the linux pattern.

Another time stamp based hack:

  1. Create an anchor: touch /tmp/ts
  2. Reinstall the package to be removed: python install --prefix=<PREFIX>
  3. Remove files what are more recent than the anchor file: find <PREFIX> -cnewer /tmp/ts | xargs rm -r

Yes, it is safe to simply delete anything that distutils installed. That goes for installed folders or .egg files. Naturally anything that depends on that code will no longer work.

If you want to make it work again, simply re-install.

By the way, if you are using distutils also consider using the multi-version feature. It allows you to have multiple versions of any single package installed. That means you do not need to delete an old version of a package if you simply want to install a newer version.

In ubuntu 12.04, I have found that the only place you need to look by default is under


And simply remove the associated folder and file, if there is one!

If this is for testing and/or development purposes, setuptools has a develop command that updates every time you make a change (so you don’t have to uninstall and reinstall every time you make a change). And you can uninstall the package using this command as well.

If you do use this, anything that you declare as a script will be left behind as a lingering file.

install --record + xargs rm

sudo python install --record files.txt
xargs sudo rm -rf < files.txt

removes all files and but leaves empty directories behind.

That is not ideal, it should be enough to avoid package conflicts.

And then you can finish the job manually if you want by reading files.txt, or be braver and automate empty directory removal as well.

A safe helper would be:

python-setup-uninstall() (
  sudo rm -f files.txt
  sudo python install --record files.txt && \
  xargs rm -rf < files.txt
  sudo rm -f files.txt

Tested in Python 2.7.6, Ubuntu 14.04.

for Python in Windows:

python -m pip uninstall "package_keyword"
uninstall **** (y/n)?

For Windows 7,

Control Panel –> Programs –> Uninstall

, then

choose the python package to remove.

I just uninstalled a python package, and even though I’m not certain I did so perfectly, I’m reasonably confident.

I started by getting a list of all python-related files, ordered by date, on the assumption that all of the files in my package will have more or less the same timestamp, and no other files will.

Luckily, I’ve got python installed under /opt/Python-2.6.1; if I had been using the Python that comes with my Linux distro, I’d have had to scour all of /usr, which would have taken a long time.

Then I just examined that list, and noted with relief that all the stuff that I wanted to nuke consisted of one directory, /opt/Python-2.6.1/lib/python2.6/site-packages/module-name/, and one file, /opt/Python-2.6.1/lib/python2.6/site-packages/module-x.x.x_blah-py2.6.egg-info.

So I just deleted those.

Here’s how I got the date-sorted list of files:

find "[email protected]" -printf '%[email protected] ' -ls | sort -n | cut -d\ -f 2-

(I think that’s got to be GNU “find”, by the way; the flavor you get on OS X doesn’t know about “-printf ‘%[email protected]'”)

I use that all the time.

On Mac OSX, manually delete these 2 directories under your pathToPython/site-packages/ will work:

  • {packageName}
  • {packageName}-{version}-info

for example, to remove pyasn1, which is a distutils installed project:

  • rm -rf lib/python2.7/site-packages/pyasn1
  • rm -rf lib/python2.7/site-packages/pyasn1-0.1.9-py2.7.egg-info

To find out where is your site-packages:

python -m site

ERROR: flake8 3.7.9 has requirement pycodestyle<2.6.0,>=2.5.0, but you'll have pycodestyle 2.3.1 which is incompatible.
ERROR: nuscenes-devkit 1.0.8 has requirement motmetrics<=1.1.3, but you'll have motmetrics 1.2.0 which is incompatible.
Installing collected packages: descartes, future, torch, cachetools, torchvision, flake8-import-order, xmltodict, entrypoints, flake8, motmetrics, nuscenes-devkit
Attempting uninstall: torch
Found existing installation: torch 1.0.0
Uninstalling torch-1.0.0:
Successfully uninstalled torch-1.0.0
Attempting uninstall: torchvision
Found existing installation: torchvision 0.2.1
Uninstalling torchvision-0.2.1:
Successfully uninstalled torchvision-0.2.1
Attempting uninstall: entrypoints
Found existing installation: entrypoints 0.2.3
ERROR: Cannot uninstall 'entrypoints'. It is a distutils installed project and thus we cannot accurately determine which files belong to it which would lead to only a partial uninstall.

Then I type:

conda uninstall entrypoints
pip install --upgrade pycodestyle
pip install nuscenes-devkit