Set up both 32 and 64 bit Anaconda on Windows


I need to have both 32 bit and 64 bit Python on my Windows machine. For 32 bit, I only need Python 2.

First, I installed Anaconda 4.3 into my home directory (C:\Users\wensheng). Then I downloaded Miniconda Python 2.7 32-bit installer. I run the installer as usual, but at the last step, where it ask if you want to add path to environment, uncheck that option.

So now I have both 32 bit and 64 bit Anaconda installed, 32-bit is in Miniconda2, 64-bit is in Anaconda3, both under C:\Users\wensheng. But I only have path for 64-bit in my environment. When I type python, conda, or activate in cmd.exe, I get 64-bit version.

To create a 32-bit conda env, I use full name of 32-bit conda, like:

C:\Users\wensheng\Miniconda2\Scripts\conda create -n ...

Because this is done only once or twice so it’s not that painful. However once conda env is created, I do use activate quite often. But typing just activate in cmd.exe will invoke the 64-bit Python 3 version. To make it easier to run 32-bit activate, I create a bat file in my bin directory called act.bat with just one line:

%USERPROFILE%\Miniconda2\Scripts\activate %1

Now act is for 32-bit activate. (My bin directory is already in my PATH environment variable.)

Side note: On linux, when you run just env, it will print out all environment variables. On Windows, the equivalent is typing just set.