pyinstaller <options> SCRIPT…

pyinstaller <options> SPECFILE


PyInstaller is a program that freezes (packages) Python programs into stand-alone executables, under Windows, GNU/Linux, Mac OS X, FreeBSD, Solaris and AIX. Its main advantages over similar tools are that PyInstaller works with Python 2.7 and 3.4—3.6, it builds smaller executables thanks to transparent compression, it is fully multi-platform, and use the OS support to load the dynamic libraries, thus ensuring full compatibility.

You may either pass one or more file-names of Python scripts or a single .spec-file-name. In the first case, pyinstaller will generate a .spec-file (as pyi-makespec would do) and immediately process it.

If you pass a .spec-file, this will be processed and most options given on the command-line will have no effect. Please see the PyInstaller Manual for more information.


-h, --help show this help message and exit
-v, --version Show program version info and exit.
--distpath DIR Where to put the bundled app (default: ./dist)
--workpath WORKPATH
 Where to put all the temporary work files, .log, .pyz and etc. (default: ./build)
-y, --noconfirm
 Replace output directory (default: SPECPATH/dist/SPECNAME) without asking for confirmation
--upx-dir UPX_DIR
 Path to UPX utility (default: search the execution path)
-a, --ascii Do not include unicode encoding support (default: included if available)
--clean Clean PyInstaller cache and remove temporary files before building.
--log-level LEVEL
 Amount of detail in build-time console messages. LEVEL may be one of TRACE, DEBUG, INFO, WARN, ERROR, CRITICAL (default: INFO).

What to generate

-D, --onedir Create a one-folder bundle containing an executable (default)
-F, --onefile Create a one-file bundled executable.
--specpath DIR Folder to store the generated spec file (default: current directory)
-n NAME, --name NAME
 Name to assign to the bundled app and spec file (default: first script’s basename)

How to generate

-d <all,imports,bootloader,noarchive>, --debug <all,imports,bootloader,noarchive>

Provide assistance with debugging a frozen application. This argument may be provided multiple times to select several of the following options.

  • all: All three of the following options.
  • imports: specify the -v option to the underlying Python interpreter, causing it to print a message each time a module is initialized, showing the place (filename or built-in module) from which it is loaded. See
  • bootloader: tell the bootloader to issue progress messages while initializing and starting the bundled app. Used to diagnose problems with missing imports.
  • noarchive: instead of storing all frozen Python source files as an archive inside the resulting executable, store them as files in the resulting output directory.
-s, --strip Apply a symbol-table strip to the executable and shared libs (not recommended for Windows)
--noupx Do not use UPX even if it is available (works differently between Windows and *nix)
--upx-exclude FILE
 Prevent a binary from being compressed when using upx. This is typically used if upx corrupts certain binaries during compression. FILE is the filename of the binary without path. This option can be used multiple times.

Windows and Mac OS X specific options

-c, --console, --nowindowed
 Open a console window for standard i/o (default). On Windows this option will have no effect if the first script is a ‘.pyw’ file.
-w, --windowed, --noconsole
 Windows and Mac OS X: do not provide a console window for standard i/o. On Mac OS X this also triggers building an OS X .app bundle. On Windows this option will be set if the first script is a ‘.pyw’ file. This option is ignored in *NIX systems.
-i <FILE.ico or FILE.exe,ID or FILE.icns>, --icon <FILE.ico or FILE.exe,ID or FILE.icns>
 FILE.ico: apply that icon to a Windows executable. FILE.exe,ID, extract the icon with ID from an exe. FILE.icns: apply the icon to the .app bundle on Mac OS X

Windows specific options

--version-file FILE
 add a version resource from FILE to the exe
-m <FILE or XML>, --manifest <FILE or XML>
 add manifest FILE or XML to the exe
-r RESOURCE, --resource RESOURCE
 Add or update a resource to a Windows executable. The RESOURCE is one to four items, FILE[,TYPE[,NAME[,LANGUAGE]]]. FILE can be a data file or an exe/dll. For data files, at least TYPE and NAME must be specified. LANGUAGE defaults to 0 or may be specified as wildcard * to update all resources of the given TYPE and NAME. For exe/dll files, all resources from FILE will be added/updated to the final executable if TYPE, NAME and LANGUAGE are omitted or specified as wildcard *.This option can be used multiple times.
--uac-admin Using this option creates a Manifest which will request elevation upon application restart.
--uac-uiaccess Using this option allows an elevated application to work with Remote Desktop.

Windows Side-by-side Assembly searching options (advanced)

 Any Shared Assemblies bundled into the application will be changed into Private Assemblies. This means the exact versions of these assemblies will always be used, and any newer versions installed on user machines at the system level will be ignored.
 While searching for Shared or Private Assemblies to bundle into the application, PyInstaller will prefer not to follow policies that redirect to newer versions, and will try to bundle the exact versions of the assembly.

Mac OS X specific options

--osx-bundle-identifier BUNDLE_IDENTIFIER
 Mac OS X .app bundle identifier is used as the default unique program name for code signing purposes. The usual form is a hierarchical name in reverse DNS notation. For example: com.mycompany.department.appname (default: first script’s basename)

Rarely used special options

--runtime-tmpdir PATH
 Where to extract libraries and support files in onefile-mode. If this option is given, the bootloader will ignore any temp-folder location defined by the run-time OS. The _MEIxxxxxx-folder will be created here. Please use this option only if you know what you are doing.
 Tell the bootloader to ignore signals rather than forwarding them to the child process. Useful in situations where e.g. a supervisor process signals both the bootloader and child (e.g. via a process group) to avoid signalling the child twice.


 This changes the directory where PyInstaller caches some files. The default location for this is operating system dependent, but is typically a subdirectory of the home directory.


pyi-makespec(1), The PyInstaller Manual, Project Homepage