Using sudo with pip3?

Cameron Simpson cs at
Sat Jan 7 21:42:14 EST 2017

On 07Jan2017 19:45, jim <jf_byrnes at> wrote:
>On 01/07/2017 05:58 PM, Clint Moyer wrote:
>>So to minimize your issues with installing Python packages, take the
>>path of least resistance and install through your system repo. And use
>>Python2 or Python3 explicitly to avoid conflicts.
>As I mentioned in another post, most of the more popular modules I had 
>installed on my old system using pip are available in the repository 
>and I will use the repository to install them on the new system. I now 
>understand that using sudo is a bad idea.


>One question from the earlier post that did not get answered concerned 
>upgrading a repository installed module with pip.

I would recommend not. As soon as you get there:

  - if the vendor updates it, use apt-get (I know this doesn't fit your 
    situation with Ubuntu 16.04 LTS)

  - if you want a more modern version, now is the time to use virtualenv

The thing about LTS is that the vendor guarentees its stability. If you upgrade 
the vendor installed package using /usr/bin/pip (or pip3) as root, you're 
replacing the vendor supplied module with a newer one, which may break vendor 
supplied packages which use that module expected the _old_ behaviour.

So endeavour to leave the vendor suppplied stuff entirely alone except for 
apt-get style updates.

Instead, make a virtualenv an upgrade it with a newer package.

>To get started on the new system I installed pip3 from the repository. The 
>first time I used it to install a module it said a newer version was available 
>and gave the command to update it. What are the consequences of using pip to 
>upgrade repository installed modules?

In theory, if the newer version of the module installs a breaking change it can 
break things in the system which might use that module and expect its old 
behaviour. Also, _sometimes_, vendors supply patches versions of packages, 
possibly including python modules. If they're modified/patched, there is 
probably a reason. You'd be undoing that patch.

>I ask because 16.04 is LTS and won't be getting version upgrades 
>unless they are security related. Also pandas is in the repositories but the 
>module pandas-datareader, which I may need to use, is not.

Again: make a virtualenv as yourself.

Its pip can be run as yourself, therefore cannot accidentally modify system 
module. It's pip can freely upgrade a older module. If you install a module 
_not_ supplied by the vendor, the virtualenv pip can freely do that, and _also_ 
upgrade a required module should that be required (PyPI package definitions let 
a module specify required revisions of other modules it may use).

Cameron Simpson <cs at>

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