How to Run Python in the Terminal?

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Running Python in the terminal involves executing Python commands or running Python scripts directly in the command line interface (CLI) of your operating system. Here are the basic steps to run Python in the terminal:

  1. Open a terminal window: Depending on your operating system, you can open a terminal window or command prompt. For example, on Windows, you can open the Command Prompt or PowerShell, while on macOS or Linux, you can use the Terminal or Shell.
  2. Check Python installation: Ensure that Python is installed on your system. You can check the Python version by typing python or python3 (for Python 3) in the terminal and pressing Enter. If Python is installed, it will display the Python version information.
  3. Execute Python commands: In the terminal, you can directly enter Python commands and press Enter to execute them. For example, you can type python (or python3 for Python 3) to start a Python interactive interpreter, where you can enter Python commands and see their output directly in the terminal.
  4. Run Python scripts: If you have a Python script file (with a .py extension) that you want to run, you can use the python or python3 command followed by the name of the Python script file. For example, if you have a script named, you can type python (or python3 for Python 3) in the terminal and press Enter to run the script. The Python interpreter will execute the code in the script and display any output or errors in the terminal.
  5. Provide command-line arguments: If your Python script takes command-line arguments, you can pass them after the script name. For example, if your script expects two arguments, you can run python arg1 arg2 to pass arg1 and arg2 as arguments to the script.
  6. Exit Python interpreter: To exit the Python interpreter or stop the execution of a Python script, you can type exit() or press Ctrl + Z (Windows) or Ctrl + D (macOS/Linux) and press Enter in the terminal.

Note: If you’re working with Python virtual environments, you may need to activate the virtual environment before running Python scripts or commands in the terminal. Refer to the documentation of your virtual environment tool (e.g., virtualenv, conda) for instructions on how to activate and use virtual environments in the terminal.

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