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Creation of :ref:`virtual environments <venv-def>` is done by executing the
command ``venv``::
python -m venv /path/to/new/virtual/environment
Running this command creates the target directory (creating any parent
directories that don't exist already) and places a ``pyvenv.cfg`` file in it
with a ``home`` key pointing to the Python installation from which the command
was run (a common name for the target directory is ``.venv``). It also creates
a ``bin`` (or ``Scripts`` on Windows) subdirectory containing a copy/symlink
of the Python binary/binaries (as appropriate for the platform or arguments
used at environment creation time). It also creates an (initially empty)
``lib/pythonX.Y/site-packages`` subdirectory (on Windows, this is
``Lib\site-packages``). If an existing directory is specified, it will be
.. deprecated:: 3.6
``pyvenv`` was the recommended tool for creating virtual environments for
Python 3.3 and 3.4, and is
:ref:`deprecated in Python 3.6 <whatsnew36-venv>`.
.. versionchanged:: 3.5
The use of ``venv`` is now recommended for creating virtual environments.
.. highlight:: none
On Windows, invoke the ``venv`` command as follows::
c:\>Python35\python -m venv c:\path\to\myenv
Alternatively, if you configured the ``PATH`` and ``PATHEXT`` variables for
your :ref:`Python installation <using-on-windows>`::
c:\>python -m venv c:\path\to\myenv
The command, if run with ``-h``, will show the available options::
usage: venv [-h] [--system-site-packages] [--symlinks | --copies] [--clear]
[--upgrade] [--without-pip] [--prompt PROMPT] [--upgrade-deps]
Creates virtual Python environments in one or more target directories.
positional arguments:
ENV_DIR A directory to create the environment in.
optional arguments:
-h, --help show this help message and exit
Give the virtual environment access to the system
site-packages dir.
--symlinks Try to use symlinks rather than copies, when symlinks
are not the default for the platform.
--copies Try to use copies rather than symlinks, even when
symlinks are the default for the platform.
--clear Delete the contents of the environment directory if it
already exists, before environment creation.
--upgrade Upgrade the environment directory to use this version
of Python, assuming Python has been upgraded in-place.
--without-pip Skips installing or upgrading pip in the virtual
environment (pip is bootstrapped by default)
--prompt PROMPT Provides an alternative prompt prefix for this
--upgrade-deps Upgrade core dependencies (pip) to the
latest version in PyPI
Once an environment has been created, you may wish to activate it, e.g. by
sourcing an activate script in its bin directory.
.. versionchanged:: 3.12
``setuptools`` is no longer a core venv dependency.
.. versionchanged:: 3.9
Add ``--upgrade-deps`` option to upgrade pip + setuptools to the latest on PyPI
.. versionchanged:: 3.4
Installs pip by default, added the ``--without-pip`` and ``--copies``
.. versionchanged:: 3.4
In earlier versions, if the target directory already existed, an error was
raised, unless the ``--clear`` or ``--upgrade`` option was provided.
.. note::
While symlinks are supported on Windows, they are not recommended. Of
particular note is that double-clicking ``python.exe`` in File Explorer
will resolve the symlink eagerly and ignore the virtual environment.
.. note::
On Microsoft Windows, it may be required to enable the ``Activate.ps1``
script by setting the execution policy for the user. You can do this by
issuing the following PowerShell command:
PS C:\> Set-ExecutionPolicy -ExecutionPolicy RemoteSigned -Scope CurrentUser
See `About Execution Policies
for more information.
The created ``pyvenv.cfg`` file also includes the
``include-system-site-packages`` key, set to ``true`` if ``venv`` is
run with the ``--system-site-packages`` option, ``false`` otherwise.
Unless the ``--without-pip`` option is given, :mod:`ensurepip` will be
invoked to bootstrap ``pip`` into the virtual environment.
Multiple paths can be given to ``venv``, in which case an identical virtual
environment will be created, according to the given options, at each provided