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Problem :

On installing Anaconda on Ubantu getting below Python error on miss-typed commands
fatal python error: py_initialize: unable to get the locale encoding
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2 Answers

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I have also faced similar issues in the past , so I traced it back to how bash handles "command not found". In Ubuntu 14.04 

/etc/bash.bashrc has the following function:

if [ -x /usr/lib/command-not-found ]; then
    function command_not_found_handle {
        # check because c-n-f could've been removed in the meantime
        if [ -x /usr/lib/command-not-found ]; then
            /usr/bin/python /usr/lib/command-not-found -- $1
            return $?
           return 127

Further Readings:


9 7 4
38,600 points
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It is suggested to use PYTHONPATH. Mostly it is not needed and causes many things to break like this by making one Python load things form another Python.


 When you try to execute the command in python 3.5. Then the error message can occur;

Fatal Python error: Py_Initialize: Unable to get the locale encoding

InmportError: No module named ‘encodings’

Current thread 0x00007ff41bf46700 (most recent call first):

Aborted (core dumped)

What could be the problem?

How to fix- Fatal Python error: Py_Initialize: Unable to get the locale encodings

ImportError: No module named ‘encodings’


This error can be due to multiple installations on your machine and the command python3.5 might be referring to libraries that belong to different versions of Python. There can be another reason “The command python3.5 is not able to find the PYTHON installation path.

Use the below lines to solve the error:

export PYTHONPATH = /usr/local/lib/python3.5

export PYTHONPATH = /usr/local/lib/python3.5


Make sure that you have set the correct installation path of Python3.5.

Python 3.5.9 (default, Nov 6 2015, 16:57;04)

[GCC 4.4.7 20120313 (Red Hat 4.4.7-11) on Linux

Type “help”, “copyright”, “credits”, or “license” for more information.



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