How to access environment variable values?


Question

I set an environment variable that I want to access in my Python application. How do I get this value?

1
1761
3/1/2019 9:21:15 PM

Accepted Answer

Environment variables are accessed through os.environ

import os
print(os.environ['HOME'])

Or you can see a list of all the environment variables using:

os.environ

As sometimes you might need to see a complete list!

# using get will return `None` if a key is not present rather than raise a `KeyError`
print(os.environ.get('KEY_THAT_MIGHT_EXIST'))

# os.getenv is equivalent, and can also give a default value instead of `None`
print(os.getenv('KEY_THAT_MIGHT_EXIST', default_value))

Python default installation on Windows is C:\Python. If you want to find out while running python you can do:

import sys
print(sys.prefix)
2658
2/27/2018 6:45:21 PM

To check if the key exists (returns True or False)

'HOME' in os.environ

You can also use get() when printing the key; useful if you want to use a default.

print(os.environ.get('HOME', '/home/username/'))

where /home/username/ is the default


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