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Problems installing (easy_install) Python Imaging Library

OK, this site was handy:
Problems installing (easy_install) Python Imaging Library

However, it didn't work with Django in my virtualenv setup, so I did this instead:

  1. ENV/bin/activate
  2. Install pip: easy_install pip
  3. Use pip to install the latest stable PIL (1.1.6 at the time of this writing) as follows: pip install http://effbot.org/downloads/Imaging-1.1.6.tar.gz
It seems that the instructions at the above link prepare an egg with the Python, but doesn't set up the expected paths for the library, which meant that Django couldn't find it. The clue that broke the case is the last comment on Django bug #8187 (fixed). I wanted to find out how Django locates PIL, found the same instructions as the above link, then the bug submitter's conclusion that installing PIL in that way makes an invalid setup.

easy_install — not always so easy.

I'm in love with virtualenv, which can build a whole custom Python distribution with one command; once I figure out its kinks I'll be writing a follow up on silky-smooth Django app setup and deployment. If all of the above seems clear as mud: don't worry, be patient, and your questions will soon be answered.


I just updated the instructions to use pip to install PIL. easy_install can build libraries from a tar archive, but using it to do that with PIL makes an egg with the same problems. Doing the same with pip works fine.