How to run IDLE on Vista?

I have recently started teaching Python. At uni, I force my students to use Linux, but as you may expect most students have laptops with Vista. Today, I had to face one of the first problems of running Python on Vista. One student tried to install Python and she could not run IDLE. After a bit of googling if found out the source of the problem: Python need to be installed for all the users, not only for the current user. Otherwise, IDLE will refuse to start. 

There is a hint on one of the Python webpages. It says that if you want to install Python for all users you need to run

runas /user:Administrator "msiexec /i <path>\<file>.msi"

Now there are two problems: First, depending on your version of Vista, you may or may not have a user called Administrator. The second problem is that this command does not seem to work even if you replace Administrator with a user name that is in the administrators’ group.

The solution seems to be quite simpler:

  1. Log in as a user who is in the administrators’ group (if you do not know what is that and you are the only user of the computer, then you are probably an administrator and you do not need to worry)
  2. Create a file run.bat somewhere on your computer
  3. Edit the contents of the file and put the following command:
    msiexec /i <path-to-python-installer>\python-2.6.msi
    (e.g. msiexec /i c:\Users\dinel\Desktop\python-2.6.msi)
  4. Save the file
  5. Right click on the run.bat file and select “Run as administrator”
  6. Install python making sure you install for all users not only for yourself.
  7. Enjoy IDLE :)

This solution seems to work on Vista Home Premium Edition. Please let me know if it also works on other versions of Vista.

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2 Responses to How to run IDLE on Vista?

  1. PA says:

    It worked with windows Vista Business

  2. IU says:

    This works in Vista Ultimate. Thanks!

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