I'm trying to get ArcGIS 10.1 and Python(x,y) to peacefully co-exist with a unified installation of Python. Surely someone else is using both these tools... right?

Here's where I've gotten to:

  1. VERSION: Since ArcGIS 10.1 uses Python 2.7.2 (which contains NumPy 1.6.1), I went back to the pythonxy install mirrors and found version of Python(x,y) which includes Python 2.7.2 and NumPy 1.6.1.

  2. INSTALL: I crossed my fingers and just installed Python(x,y) after copying my original "C:\Python27\ArcGIS10.1\" folder to a safe location. It installs most of the files at "C:\Program Files (x86)\pythonxy\", and the Python files in "C:\Python27\". This is the same folder where my Arc install of Python lives, except Arc placed its version in the sub-folder "\ArcGIS10.1\". So to recap, I now have a "python.exe" and associated files in "C:\Python27\" as well as "C:\Python27\ArcGIS10.1\".

  3. NEXT? Both Spyder and ArcGIS 10.1 seem to work so far but I'm guessing this won't last long. Two separate installs on the same machine seems like a bad move in principle. I wonder: Is it possible to change Arc's preferences to point to the version in the parent folder, and condense versions? I've gone through folder by folder and in almost every case the Python(x,y) install includes all the files that ArcGIS 10.1 Python does (and then some). The exception is that the Arc install sometimes includes '.pyc' and '.pyo' versions of some '.py' files. But I'm guessing this isn't a critical difference since both directories contain the actual '.py' file.)

  4. Forgot to mention: I added "C:\Python27\ArcGIS10.0\" to the list of system paths, per the instructions in Method 2 at http://forums.arcgis.com/threads/34418-is-it-possible-to-install-other-python-distributions-on-top-of-the-arcgis. I really don't know what this does, just experimenting here.

I may post the same question at forums.arcgis.com, so if interested in the answer check there too.

I tried to add 'python(x,y)' as a tag but was unable to create a new tag.


2 Answers 2


I managed to get PythonXY to utilise the ArcPy module by copying the desktop10.2.pth file from c:\Python27\ArcGIS10.2\Lib\site-packages\ and pasting it into C:\Python27\Lib\site-packages\

In this way I was able to do a vanilla install of ArcGIS (including Python) as well as a vanilla install of PythonXY. In this secnario, PythonXY can call the ArcPy module so if you want to use Spyder to author and run python scripts that perform spatial functions you can. It also means you can write python scripts that do spatial functions and also leverage other PythonXY scientific modules as well.

Note. I haven't been able to work out how to get the PythonXY UI tool to launch. It seems that as soon as you install ArcGIS 10.2, the PythyonXY tool stops working. Anyone know how to fix that issue?


I'm not sure about unifying different sets of packages into a single installation footprint, but we have modified configuration files to exploit EPD from ArcGIS. Haven't used pythonxy specifically, but hopefully this approach will be useful for you.

zzEPD.pth - place in folder \Python27\Desktop10.1\lib\site-packages\

# zzEPD.pth 
# Path to Enthought modules

If you've already done the homework of getting (largely) consistent compilations, it seems this approach could work. As far as using arcpy/ArcGIS from EPD, we use:

zzArcGIS.pth - place in folder \Python27\epd32\lib\site-packages\

# zzArcGIS.pth 
# copy of \Python27\Desktop10.1\lib\site-packages\ArcGIS.pth

(You might even consider using EPD, which is analogous to pythonxy right?).

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.