Python-2.2a1.exe: "Can't run 16-bit Windows program"

Tim Peters at
Fri Aug 10 23:34:58 CEST 2001

[John Schmitt]
> ...
> What I meant was, if I have a Python program in my %PATH% somewhere, say
> c:\bin\
> and I'm launch that program from the command prompt like this:
> d:\myproject\skunkworks\> foo
> (I have %PATHEXT% set correctly)

Then you're relying on file extension associations, and they're a global
shared resource on Windows:  the most recently installed Python "wins".  We
can't hide that from you:  that's how Windows works (with the possible
exception of Win2K, where you *could* create a different user account for
each version of Python, each with its own file associations; that isn't
possible before Win2K, and would be a total PITA under Win2K anyway).

> I'd like to be able to set a switch somewhere that decides whether to use
> ActiveState 2.1, 2.2a1, 2.2a2, etc.  Since you have several
> Python installations going at the same time, perhaps you can share how you
> manage all these installations.

I don't do anything that relies on file associations (but mostly because I
spend most of my time on Win98SE, where PATHEXT doesn't exist).  Yesterday I
posted an example of a .reg file that changes (just) Python's
file-associations in the registry, and you can use that.  Stick it in the
little .bat file I'm about to suggest <wink>:

> ...
> Um, %PYTHONHOME%, %PYTHONPATH% etc might need adjusting.

If you write code that relies on those (I don't), write little .bat files to
change them to what you want.

> ...
> Thanks for your help.

You're welcome.

> BTW, is your <wink> emoticon overloaded?  I'm not completely confident
that I
> grok what it is meant to convey.  Can you help me out with that too?

Better explained by context:  you can find about 50,000 examples of it in
the archives.  It should become clear enough after the first 1,000
<0.9 wink>.

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