Error: externally-managed-environment installing dash

on WSL running ubuntu 24.04, running python 3.11.7, arm64
pip doesn’t work now resulting in error: externally-managed-environment

the following doesn’t work either
sudo apt install dash

or sudo apt install python3-dash

Any suggestions?

Hello @retro_afw,

Welcome to the community!

It sounds like you need to download pip for some reason…

PIP doesn’t work with latest ubuntu and Python, due to the way they manage external installs. I think this is to “container-ise” the impact on the core systems.

You can always install it as a venv, then install python3-pip through apt install?


I will provide a bit more info:-

pip install dash

error: externally-managed-environment

× This environment is externally managed
╰─> To install Python packages system-wide, try apt install
python3-xyz, where xyz is the package you are trying to

If you wish to install a non-Debian-packaged Python package,
create a virtual environment using python3 -m venv path/to/venv.
Then use path/to/venv/bin/python and path/to/venv/bin/pip. Make
sure you have python3-full installed.

If you wish to install a non-Debian packaged Python application,
it may be easiest to use pipx install xyz, which will manage a
virtual environment for you. Make sure you have pipx installed.

See /usr/share/doc/python3.11/README.venv for more information.

note: If you believe this is a mistake, please contact your Python installation or OS distribution provider. You can override this, at the risk of breaking your Python installation or OS, by passing --break-system-packages.
hint: See PEP 668 for the detailed specification.

sudo apt install pipx

pipx ensurepath
reload terminal
pipx install dash

installed package dash 2.15.0, installed using Python 3.11.7
These apps are now globally available
- dash-generate-components
- dash-update-components
- renderer

Python 3.11.7 (main, Dec 8 2023, 14:22:46) [GCC 13.2.0] on linux
Type “help”, “copyright”, “credits” or “license” for more information.

import dash
Traceback (most recent call last):
File “”, line 1, in
ModuleNotFoundError: No module named ‘dash’

Note: this virtual environment is new to me, not sure how I can import as you can see from above.

I think in this reference, they are referring to x as the python release.

Running a venv in ubuntu, you should be able to do this:

python3 -m venv path/to/venv

source path/to/venv/bin/activate

pip3 install dash

Where path to venv is wherever you want the virtual environment to run.

Raspberry pi website provided a venv workaround

This error is generated because you’re trying to install a third-party package into the system Python. A long-standing practical problem for Python users has been conflicts between OS package managers like apt and Python-specific package management tools like pip. These conflicts include both Python-level API incompatibilities and conflicts over file ownership.

Therefore from Bookworm onwards, packages installed via pip must be installed into a Python virtual environment using venv. A virtual environment is a container where you can safely install third-party modules so they won’t interfere with, or break, your system Python.

Using a separate environment for each user

An alternative method to creating a virtual environment for each of your Python projects is to create a single virtual environment for your user account, and then activate that environment before running any of your Python code. This approach may be preferred if you commonly install the same set of modules for each project, and don’t want to have to bother creating individual Python environments for each project, essentially just duplicating your environment.

$ python -m venv ~/.env
$ source ~/.env/bin/activate
(.env) $pip install dash
>>>import dash

the above works.

I just need to remember to deactivate afterwards
1 Like

Glad you got it working.

Yes, this is always an issue and can cause issues if you install different versions of python, etc.