Building IPython from git in Windows

IPython is basicly an interactive python shell. The interesting part is the IPython notebook and IPython qt shell where you are allowed to display inline plots and images.

IPython notebook is also very useful when sharing an implementation detail/tutorial or a code block with a friend/colleague.

If you put your notebook file somewhere publicly visible, nbviewer can render it for you, allowing to share your documents with anybody even though they don't have python/ipython installed.

You can install IPython for windows through WinPython distribution automatically. However IPython is very actively being develeoped, so using stable releases you may miss a quite a few features.

That brings us to the main goal of this post, how to build IPython from git in windows:

First the requirements:

  • Git for windows.
  • A python distribution. I prefer WinPython.
  • Python and scripts folders added in path enviroment variable.
    For WinPython, add the following to the path:
    C:\SDK\WinPython-32bit-\python-3.3.2\Scripts; C:\SDK\WinPython-32bit-\scripts;

Now the actual steps:

  1. Run Git Bash
  2. cd into your favorite development folder, i.e.
    cd /c/SDK/
  3. type the following git command
    git clone --recursive
  4. when complete
    cd ipython
  5. type the following command to build IPython
    easy_install .

That's it!