I have a conda environment and install gdal into it as suggested here https://gdal.org/api/python_bindings.html with the following command:

conda install -c conda-forge gdal

However, when I try to import the modul gdal with the command

from osgeo import gdal

I get the Error:

ModuleNotFoundError: No module named '_gdal'

What am I doing wrong, and how do I need to properly install gdal? I'm using Linux Mint.

  • I tried it with conda install gdal and only this seems to work.
    – i.i.k.
    Commented May 19 at 15:26
  • 1
    Are the packages still installed from conda-forge? Check with conda list. conda install -c conda-forge gdal works for me on Windows. I have Miniconda v. 23.3.1. Python 3.12.3 got installed.
    – user30184
    Commented May 19 at 15:34
  • Yes, gdal is installed with conda-forge according to the list.
    – i.i.k.
    Commented May 19 at 15:38
  • I think you can be happy then if you do not definitely want to know why the documented command did not work for you.
    – user30184
    Commented May 19 at 15:47
  • If you want to explore further on the conda-forge channel install, you can try: conda install -c conda-forge gdal krb5 to see if that solves the issue. Commented May 19 at 16:16

1 Answer 1


When using conda it is in general a good idea to avoid mixing packages from different channels.

Anaconda and miniconda use defaults as default channel, so when you use conda install -c conda-forge gdal only gdal will be installed from the conda-forge channel and most other dependencies will be installed from defaults, possibly leading to incompatibilities.

So, when you want to install something explicitly from the conda-forge channel, it is a good idea to create a new environment and configure it so the highest priority is given to conda forge for everything being installed in this environment, like this:

conda create -n gdal_cf
conda activate gdal_cf
conda config --env --add channels conda-forge
conda config --env --set channel_priority strict
conda install gdal

This should avoid this kind of issues.

Reference: here.

Regarding conda install gdal working: this will work as well as it will install gdal as well as all dependencies from defaults. However, the latest version on defaults is 3.6.2, so it trails 3 feature versions as 3.9 is the latest version (which is available on conda-forge).

  • 2
    Notice also that if you happen to work for a bigger company (>200 people) then the default conda channel is not free, while conda-forge is anaconda.com/blog/is-conda-free.
    – user30184
    Commented May 19 at 19:16
  • @user30184 This is indeed a very interesting fact. Didn't know that! Thank you for sharing!
    – i.i.k.
    Commented May 20 at 10:47
  • 1
    Thank you @Pieter! Very helpful!
    – i.i.k.
    Commented May 20 at 10:54

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