Current thoughts on Python Virtual Environments

I’ve been changing my thoughts on using Python Virtual environments. I last talked about the topic in December of 2018. Twice actually.

I’m not working the way I was when I wrote those posts, mostly because I’ve learned to do new things along the way.

My current layout, which works pretty well for me, is to create a “projects” folder and then the venv folder under it. I also try to have a folder outside of the projects called .skel. It is a throwback to the /etc/skel folder in Linux.

My .skel directory contains typical files that Github creates in a new repo. The .gitignore file for Python, the License file, and the file. I also have a blank template for The template allows me to enter the data needed. I based it on the file from the Real PythonPython Package tutorial.”

Here is what tree displays in a new project folder called ua_selector.

I usually try to keep one folder under projects called test. That folder is where I test my current code projects. Using python -m pip install -e ../<project folder>/ works great so far. Of course, I run the python command inside the virtual environment.

To activate the environment, I use the command ae, and to deactivate, I use de. I forgot who I got these from, but I like using them, it was in a youtube video,  but I can’t find it now. Add these to either your .bashrc, .bash_alias file, or whatever your shell’s configuration file is that has alias options.

ae It tries to deactivate any venv you may be in after changing files and then activates the venv in that directory.  de just deactivates the environment.

Before I realized the power of python -m pip install -e the other day, I had a quick shell one-liner doing

to change back and forth from the directory I was writing code in, and the one I was testing it in. I was working through problems having the code be an installable package. Yes, the de was a redundant action above; it was a lousy coding session, and I wasn’t trusting anything I wasn’t running by hand at that point.

Oh, and that ua_selector project, more on that later.


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