I am developing application in python and I use the osgeo gdal/ogr python bindings for gdal, but its not clear to me what exactly is the difference between the gdal/ogr in python and the gdal library in c++.

What I would like to know is, if I upgrade to the last version of c++ gdal (1.12), does my python applications using osgeo gdal/ogr will automatically use this new library or do I have to upgrade osgeo as well?

As fas as I know, gdal c++ library is being upgraded regularly but not the osgeo gdal/ogr python library.

1 Answer 1


Python does not contain a separate library for GDAL but rather bindings to access the GDAL libraries. As GDAL is updated so are the affected bindings, ensuring that you'll have full access to GDALs functionality from Python.

If you upgrade GDAL you will also upgrade the Python bindings (if the version you upgrade to supports Python bindings). If you build the GDAL libraries from source this would be ensured with ./configure --with-python.

For further clarification take a look at the GDAL PyPi page or the GDAL Python documentation.

  • Actually Im downloading the gdal binary installer for windows and using the python bindings from OSGeo4W installer. The gdal lib and the python bindings are not from the same source. That's why I ask this question. Do you know about windows install? Feb 23, 2015 at 13:19
  • 1
    In that case you might be able to run into issues. May I ask why you don't install GDAL through the OSGEO4W installer just like the python bindings? I'd suggest installing it with the installer as well: All -> Commandline_Utilities -> gdal
    – Kersten
    Feb 23, 2015 at 13:46

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