Removing Python 2.4.4 on OSX

James Stroud jstroud at
Sat Mar 24 21:36:21 CET 2007

Shane Geiger wrote:
> You don't have to uninstall 2.4.4 to use 2.5.  Just change where the 
> symlink points:
> shanegeiger at shane-geigers-computer:~\ 14:45:35$ ls -la /usr/bin/python
> lrwxr-xr-x   1 root  wheel  24 Mar  1 12:48 /usr/bin/python -> 
> /usr/local/bin/python2.5
> shanegeiger at shane-geigers-computer:~\ 14:45:40$

I have been chastised on this list for a similar suggestion (notably 
re-linking /usr/bin/python) as it may break the system because the 
particular version installed may be required for some scripts in the system.

Probably better is to create a link in ~/bin and make sure ~/bin is 
first in the path. Bash experts--please say how to do this because bash 
is default for OSX and is undoubtedly what the OP is using. I use csh.

Better, even than this is to install ipython under 2.5 and put the 
following script in your ~/bin (name it python):

#! /bin/csh -f
#second line of script (include above)

if ($#argv == 0) then
   /usr/local/bin/ipython # <==or wherever ipython is
   /usr/local/bin/python2.5 $argv

#end of script

It doesn't matter if you use bash, the above script, though csh, will 
run fine.

Now type this in a terminal: "chmod a+x ~/bin/python".

Now you can use ipython or python depending on whether you supply 
arguments. ipython will launch if you supply none (which means you want 
an interactive interpreter) and "regular" python2.5 will launch if you 
give it a script name--avoiding jumping into the ipython interpreter 
after the script finishes.

If you don't know what ipython is, you are missing out.


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