PowerShell Python Technology

Using Anaconda from PowerShell

After installing Anaconda, you can invoke conda init to initialize settings for PowerShell, including PowerShell Core. There is the problem of this approach as Anaconda is initialized every time PowerShell is launched. This is OK if you are using Python every time you launch PowerShell, however, with my case, it is often the case that I use PowerShell and no Python. This is inefficient.

I’ve decided to create a Cmdlet called Initialize-Conda. Here’s the content. You can replace C:/Path/to/Conda to your Anaconda location to adopt this to your use. (Available for Windows and Linux in Gist.)

function Initialize-Conda
	$CONDA_ROOT_DIR = "C:/Path/to/Conda" # Change this
        [System.Environment]::SetEnvironmentVariable("CONDA_EXE", "$CONDA_ROOT_DIR/Scripts/conda.exe", [System.EnvironmentVariableTarget]::Process)
	[System.Environment]::SetEnvironmentVariable("_CE_M", "", [System.EnvironmentVariableTarget]::Process)
	[System.Environment]::SetEnvironmentVariable("_CE_CONDA", "", [System.EnvironmentVariableTarget]::Process)
    [System.Environment]::SetEnvironmentVariable("_CONDA_ROOT", "$CONDA_ROOT_DIR", [System.EnvironmentVariableTarget]::Process)
        [System.Environment]::SetEnvironmentVariable("_CONDA_EXE", "$CONDA_ROOT_DIR/Scripts/conda.exe", [System.EnvironmentVariableTarget]::Process)

        Import-Module -Scope Global "$Env:_CONDA_ROOT/shell/condabin/Conda.psm1"
        conda activate base

Environment variable initialization appears bit long — this is because scope of the variable does not get passed outside of the script scope. Therefore, I had to use .NET’s SetEnvironmentVarible to initialize environmental variable for the scope of the process. (Under Linux, CONDA_EXE and _CONDA_EXE should be changed to $CONDA_ROOT_DIR/bin/conda)

It is also possible to use Add-CondaEnvironmentToPrompt to prefix the prompt with the current Conda environment. I’ve omitted this as I found this to be unreliable.

Here’s the corresponding PSD1 file. (Available from Gist.)

    RootModule = 'Conda.psm1'
    ModuleVersion = ''
    FunctionsToExport = @(
    CmdletsToExport   = '*'
    VariablesToExport = '*'
    AliasesToExport   = '*'
    GUID = '23421dee-ca6f-4847-9c93-1268c629964a'
    Author = 'Hideki Saito'
    Description = 'Anaconda Initializer'
    PowerShellVersion = '6.0'
    CompatiblePSEditions = 'Core'
    Copyright = '(c) 2019 Hideki Saito. All rights reserved.'
    PrivateData = @{
        PSData = @{
            ProjectUri = ''
            ReleaseNotes = ''

Take these two files, Conda.psm1, and Conda.psd1, and place them under Documents\PowerShell\Modules\Conda (Under Linux, it’s ~/.local/share/powershell/Modules/Conda) and then you should be able to launch Initialize-Conda.

By Hideki Saito

In the video game industry for for more than 15 years. Currently working for Nintendo of America Inc. as a Localization Engineer, developing the translation solutions.