Mapping python to Python 3 on Your Mac

When you install Python 3 on a Mac, it does not update the python command to use Python 3 instead of Python 2. Instead, to run Python 3, you have to use the python3 command. Here’s how to fix this:

First, check your Python version:

Nats-MBP:~ natdunn$ python -V
Python 2.7.15

We want that to say python 3. something.

What shell are you using?

First, determine what shell you are using.

Open Terminal and look at the last character of the prompt. If it’s a dollar sign ($), you’re most likely using bash. If it’s a percentage sign (%), you’re most likely using zsh. You can confirm by running:

echo $SHELL

Depending on which shell you are using, enter one of the following:

nano .bash_profile

nano .zshrc

This will open the nano editor. Add the following line:

alias python=python3

Restart Terminal.

Run python -V to see check the version:

Nats-MBP:~ natdunn$ python -V
Python 3.8.1

You’re good to go.

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