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Anaconda, Spyder and ArcGIS PRO

07-17-2016 01:55 AM
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Anaconda ... python ... spyder ... conda .... arcgis pro

Some new info that may make it easier for 2.5




Ok... change is inevitable... at least we still have IDEs, having harkened from the card reader days.

So this is a running visual of installing Spyder so I can use with ArcGIS PRO and for general python 3.4/5/6 work

I have used pythonwin and pyscripter for some time.

Some people are charmed by pycharm and so people can't wait to be IDLE. ... but for now, I will document Spyder.

I will add to this as I find more..

NOTE See the Comments section for other sample images of Spyder


 2017-10-31 Anaconda 5.0 is out

see the changelog for details

2017-02-18 Anaconda 4.3 is out  

see the full changelog for details...  some highlights...

  2016-10-20 Conda and ArcGIS Pro | ArcPy Café 

Things just got a whole load easier....

Current distribution supports up to and including python 3.6, and a nice new Spyder plus many more upgraded packages.  I am using this for future-proofing my work.  Arc* will eventually be there so you may as well test while you can.


I will leave the material below as a legacy record since much of it still applies

The original link on ArcGIS Pro and the changes to managing python environments can be found here

.... Python and ArcGIS Pro 1.3 : Conda

Related python information can also be found in

.....   The links

        Coming to Python.... preparation and anticipation

        Python 3.5 comes to iThings

Additions and modificationsDocumentation


-  2016-07-15  importing xlsxwriter

-  2016-07-15  initial post

  1. Anaconda | Continuum Analytics: Documentation
  2. Get started — Conda documentation
  3. Anaconda package list
  4. Excel plug-ins for Anaconda |
  5. Spyder Documentation


State the obvious..... Install ArcGIS PRO 

Just follow the instructions.  Don't try and monkey-patch an old machine that barely runs ArcMap.  Start fresh.

1.  Install your Python IDE

I have never used Arc*'s built in IDE.  I am not sure why they include it, except for the fact that they can control its installation and no one needs to worry about problems associated with a separate  IDE.  I installed spyder, Jupyter Qt-console and PythonWin.  Spyder and Jupyter are included in the Anaconda distribution that esri provides.  If you don't use one now, then install spyder.

2.  Setting your default editor

 If you want to use another one, go to the Project pane, the Geoprocessing Options and do some setup.  Spyder is located in a somewhat cryptic folder path, which I have show in navigation mode and in step 2. as a visual with cutouts for the fiddle bits.  In reality, the portion of the path C:\Program Files\ArcGIS\Pro is the default installation path and the one most likely to be offered during installation and for multi-user machines.  I personally install mine where I know what it is in the folder.... C:\ArcPro.



3. The file path to locate the executable

I assume a default path installation in the following.  Everything prior to the ...\bin folder is specific to your machine install path.



4. The site-package folder

What is included without by default from an ArcGIS Pro installation... this is not a complete list of available packages... the list of those, is given above in the table.  The packages come by python version.  We are currently using python 3.4.x in ArcGIS PRO and ArcMap



5. The Spyder folder contents

What is in the spyder folder... scientific_startup does some standard imports for what-it-says-type work



6. The pkgs folder

A record of the packages that were installed.



7.  Importing packages... xlsxwriter demo

Here is the workflow I used to import the xlsxwriter module for use in python and arcmap (presumably).

Here is the workflow I used to import the xlsxwriter module for use in python and arcmap (presumably).

From the start button (windows 10, bottom left) navigate to the ArcGIS folder via All Apps find the Python Command Prompt and right-click on it and Run as Administrator


Do the conda install xlswriter entry as suggested in the originating post.


Hit Enter and away you go. The magic happens and it should be installed.


At this stage, I went back to Spyder and from the IPython console I tested... looks good



More as I find it...

About the Author
Retired Geomatics Instructor at Carleton University. I am a forum MVP and Moderator. Current interests focus on python-based integration in GIS. See... Py... blog, my GeoNet blog...