How to Install Python on Windows

Read it in 8 Mins

Last updated on
06th Jun, 2022
Published
03rd Nov, 2020
Views
8,794
How to Install Python on Windows

Python was created by Guido van Rossum and first released in 1991. It is an open source, interpreted programming language, and is simple to use, readable and extensible. You can split your program into modules that can be reused in other Python programs. In addition, check out the article on Self in Python. 

Python supports several paradigms, such as object-oriented, functional, and procedural with the support of large comprehensible library.  

Python releases for Windows  

The latest version of Python is 3.9.0, released on Oct. 5, 2020. It contains many new features and optimization. This is the first version of Python to default to the 64-bit installer on Windows. The installer now also actively disallows installation on Windows 7. Python 3.9 is incompatible with this unsupported version of Windows. 

If you go to the page: you will find all releases of Python. The installation process is the same, regardless of the version. 

The Python installers for the Windows platform usually include the entire standard library and often also include many additional components. For Unix-like operating systems Python is normally provided as a collection of packages, so it may be necessary to use the packaging tools provided with the operating system to obtain some or all of the optional components. 

There are a number of different installers available for Windows, each with certain advantages and disadvantages. 

  • Web-based installers:This installer is very small in size. It could be installed in a local computer with web-access. The installer will download necessary files and install them.  
  • Executable installer:Best option for installing Python locally. The installer contains all important components and installs them itself. This is the best option for development of any kind of Python projects.   
  • The embeddable package: is a minimal package of Python suitable for embedding into a larger application. The embeddable package uses Python as runtime and allows to distribute applications on Windows. 

Installing Python 3.9.0 for Windows 

Step 1: Open your browser window and navigate: 

How to Install Python on Windows

Step 2: Click on button download python 3.9.0 to download Python Executable Installer for Windows. It will start downloading the installer, which is around 27 MB in size.( If you have a lower version of Windows, please click Downloads menu button and select a specific version from the downloads page.) 

Step 3:  Once finished with the download, double click on the downloaded file to run the installer 

Step 4: The setup windows shows following dialog window with two installation options 

A. Install Now 

B. Customize Installation 

How to Install Python on Windows

A. If you select “Install Now”: 

  • You will not need to be an administrator. 
  • This option installs Python in your user directory shown in the dialog box under Install Now option.  
  • The standard library, test suite, launcher and pip will be installed. 
  • If selected, the install directory will be added to your PATH. 
  • If you check the install launcher for all users, it will install python launcher for all the users of your system. 

Step 5: The setup process will be shown in a Python 3.9.0(64-bit) Setup pop-up window.  

How to Install Python on Windows

Step 6: After successful completion of installation the following popup window will be shown with Setup was successful message. 

This dialog box also gives you the option to Disable path length limit. 

Clicking the “Disable path length limit” option removes the limitation on the MAX_PATH variable. This change won't break anything, but will allow Python to use long path names. 

Removing the MAX_PATH Limitation 

Windows historically has limited path lengths to 260 characters. This meant that paths longer than this would not resolve, and errors would result; this is termed as MAX_PATH LimitationIn the latest versions of Windows, this limitation can be expanded to approximately 32,000 characters.  

How to Install Python on Windows
You must save the file python-3.9 exe somewhere on your computer in case you need to reinstall, modify the settings or uninstall python.  

B. Customize installationThis option allows you to select the features to install, the installation location and other options or post-install actions. If you select customized installation: 

  • You may be required to provide administrative credentials or approval 
  • Python will be installed into the Program Files directory 
  • The Python Launcher for Windows will be installed into the Windows directory 
  • The standard library can be pre-compiled to bytecode 
  • If selected, the install directory will be added to the system PATH 

Step 5: Step 1 to 4 would be same, but as you select the customized installation, the following dialog box will appear. 

How to Install Python on Windows

This window provides a list with several optional featuresYou may select the respective checkboxes as per the requirement. The meaning of each option is as follows: 

  • Documentation: Will download the documentation, which can help you for future references.  
  • Pip: Pip is a tool which helps in installation of additional libraries and dependencies which are not available in the standard library. It is also called the package manager of Python. Starting from the Python 3.4 version, the pip comes bundled with the installation files, but before that we used to install this package manager separately.  
  • IDLE: stands for Integrated Development Learning Environment. This is CLI bundled with python. Along with IDLE editor, enabling this option will also install the “tkinter” toolkit, which is a python default GUI package.  
  • Python test suite: This feature will install all the standard libraries for python application testing.  
  • Py launcher: enables you to launch python CLI through programs like command prompt or windows shell.  
  • For all users: it will install python launcher for all the users of your system 

Step 6: After clicking on Next button one more dialog window appears on the screen which helps developers to check or uncheck additional features.  

How to Install Python on Windows
This page provides 7 advance options: 

  • Install for all users: It will install python launcher for all the users of your system 
  • Associate files with Python (requires the py launcer): this option will link all the files Python extensions like .py, .pyd, .pyc or .pyo with the python launcher or editor. 
  • Create shortcut for installed applications: It will create a shortcut of application for you 
  • Add python to environment variables: PATH is an environment variable in Windows. It basically tells the command-line argument, what folders to look in when attempting to find a file 
  • The last three options tell the python installation wizard to install all the debug symbols and binaries along with the bytecode of all the standard libraries, which we will be using with our programs.  
  • Customize installation location: We can change the location of python installation directory. The location you will specify will be added in the environmental variable of our windows 10 operating system.  

After selecting the required advance options, click on Install button. 

After successful completion of installation, the following popup window will be shown with Setup was successful message. 

How to Install Python on Windows

Modifying an install 

Once Python has been installed, you can add or remove features through the Programs and Features tool that is part of Windows. Select the Python entry and choose “Uninstall/Change” to open the installer in maintenance mode. 

“Modify” allows you to add or remove features by modifying the checkboxes - unchanged checkboxes will not install or remove anything. Some options cannot be changed in this mode, such as the install directory; to modify these, you will need to remove and then reinstall Python completely. 

“Repair” will verify all the files that should be installed using the current settings and replace any that have been removed or modified. 

“Uninstall” will remove Python entirely, with the exception of the Python Launcher for Windows, which has its own entry in Programs and Features. 

Setting Path 

The definition of “PATH” by Wikipedia is “PATH is an environment variable on Unix-likeoperating systems, DOS, OS/2, and Microsoft Windows, specifying a set of directories where executable programs are located. In general, each executing process or user session has its own PATH setting 

In Windows %PATH%  is a variable which provides a list of directory names separated by semicolon(;). When we enter a command on command shell , the system will search in current windows directory and after that it searches in path. It actually looks for a filename in the path which matches with the command you have given. Once it finds the matching executable file it loads the new process and getexecuted.  

Python Launcher for Windows 

The Python launcher for Windows is a utility which helps in locating and executing different Python versions. It allows scripts (or the command-line) to indicate a preference for a specific Python version, and will locate and execute that version. 

Unlike the PATH variable, the launcher will correctly select the most appropriate version of Python. It will prefer per-user installations over system-wide ones, and orders by language version rather than using the most recently installed version. 

The launcher was originally specified in PEP 397. 

A Python launcher is a single executable which uses a number of heuristics to locate a Python executable and launches it with a specified command line. 

The launcher allows Python scripts or the Windows command-line to specify a particular Python version and will locate and launch that version.

Documentation links for python 

Browse the docs online or download a copy of your own 

Document release by version 

Conclusion

We hope this blog “How to install Python on Windows” would help you during the Python installation process. For additional information you can visit the official site of Python.

Profile

KnowledgeHut

Author
KnowledgeHut is an outcome-focused global ed-tech company. We help organizations and professionals unlock excellence through skills development. We offer training solutions under the people and process, data science, full-stack development, cybersecurity, future technologies and digital transformation verticals.