Notes on Ubuntu (Linux) computing

Brief notes on installation, setup and other tasks in the Ubuntu world

Python setup

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Ubuntu 12.04 comes with python 2.7.3 already installed by default. You can test your exact version using the following command at the terminal:

python --version

In general, there are many ways to install python packages in Ubuntu. I will mainly consider two: (1) use apt-get to install packages in the Ubuntu repositories and (2) manually install by downloading the code. Usually, I will use repository versions unless I really need a current version of the package. In any case, I will separate package installation instructions, based on the methods I use to install.

Repository installs using apt-get

  • cython
     sudo apt-get install cython
  • distutils
     sudo apt-get install python-distutils-extra
  • matplotlib — also installs numpy
     sudo apt-get install python-matplotlib
  • nose
     sudo apt-get install python-nose
  • pydot — also installs graphviz as a dependency
     sudo apt-get install python-pydot
  • python-dev
     sudo apt-get install python-dev
  • scientific
     sudo apt-get install python-scientific
  • scipy
     sudo apt-get install python-scipy
  • swig
     sudo apt-get install swig

Manual installs (from source)

  • networkx
    • networkx does their version control with git
    • Move to directory where you want to download code. For example,
          cd ~/gitLocal
    • Clone the repository
          git clone git://
    • Change to main directory and install
          cd networkx/
          sudo python install
  • pygraphviz
    • Make sure that libgraphviz-dev is installed
          sudo apt-get install libgraphviz-dev
    • python-dev and swig are also needed — see above for install information
    • This project does version control with svn
    • Move to directory where you want to download code. For example,
          cd ~/svnLocal
    • Checkout the repository
          svn checkout pygraphviz
    • Change to main directory
          cd pygraphviz/
    • ** I had to update file so that library_path and include_path were correct. Look for lines to uncomment (library_path and include_path are commented out by default):
         # Linux, generic UNIX
    • ** You can check if these are the correct paths by looking at the output of the following command:
         whereis graphviz
    • Finally, install:
         sudo python install
  • CMPy
    • CMPy is a python package for Computational Mechanics, as developed in Jim Crutchfield’s group. At this point, access to the code is limited to users with ssh-keys on file.
    • This project uses git for version control.
    • Move to directory where you want to download code. For example,
          cd ~/gitLocal
    • Clone the repository (this will only work if you have ssh-key on file — no anonymous)
          git clone
    • Change to main directory
          cd cmpy
    • Finally, install using cython switch
          sudo python install --cython
  • PyMC — a nice MCMC package for Bayesian inference using python.

This is an active post — I will update as I install/modify my Python setup in Ubuntu 12.04 LTS.


Written by Chris S

October 9, 2012 at 12:07 am

Posted in Python, Ubuntu 12.04

Tagged with , ,

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