How to freeze packages installed only in the virtual environment, that is, without the global ones?

You need to use the -l or --local option to freeze only the local packages (and not the global ones)

pip freeze -l > requirements.txt 

Make sure you are working in the virtualenv before doing pip freeze -l.

Only local packages on virtual environment

pip freeze -l > requirements.txt # or --local instead of -l

Only local packages installed by the user on virtual environment

pip freeze --user > requirements.txt

See the documentation for further details:

For me (macOS) the following worked

path/to/venv/bin/pip3 freeze -l

I’m on Windows 10, python 3.6, with my virtual environment called env activated using command prompt I found that pip freeze -l does not work (error), python -m pip freeze -l does not work (gets global packages) but changing into my virtual environment Scripts directory and running pip freeze or pip freeze -l works. Here is an example of this solution/work-around with my virtual environment, env:

cd \env\Scripts
pip freeze > ..\..\requirements.txt

python venv/Path_to/bin/pip freeze -l 

Install whatever you need to freeze in your virtual environment, and then

pip freeze > requirements.txt

After that install the packages in the virtual environment that you do not want to freeze.

Try the following command:

pip -E /path/to/env/ freeze