Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

On my Mac OS X Lion, I type the following in Terminal:

hobbes3@hobbes3:~$ which python
hobbes3@hobbes3:~$ python
Python 2.7.1 (r271:86832, Jun 16 2011, 16:59:05) 
[GCC 4.2.1 (Based on Apple Inc. build 5658) (LLVM build 2335.15.00)] on darwin
Type "help", "copyright", "credits" or "license" for more information.
>>> ^D
hobbes3@hobbes3:~$ /usr/local/bin/python
Python 2.7.2 (default, Feb 23 2012, 00:05:44) 
[GCC 4.2.1 (Based on Apple Inc. build 5658) (LLVM build 2336.1.00)] on darwin
Type "help", "copyright", "credits" or "license" for more information.

Part of my /usr/local/bin/ looks like this:

lrwxr-xr-x   1 root  wheel    32B Feb 23 00:07 pydoc -> ../Cellar/python/2.7.2/bin/pydoc
lrwxr-xr-x   1 root  wheel    33B Feb 23 00:07 python -> ../Cellar/python/2.7.2/bin/python
lrwxr-xr-x   1 root  wheel    40B Feb 23 00:07 python-config -> ../Cellar/python/2.7.2/bin/python-config
lrwxr-xr-x   1 root  wheel    36B Feb 23 00:07 python2.7 -> ../Cellar/python/2.7.2/bin/python2.7
lrwxr-xr-x   1 root  wheel    43B Feb 23 00:07 python2.7-config -> ../Cellar/python/2.7.2/bin/python2.7-config
lrwxr-xr-x   1 root  wheel    34B Feb 23 00:07 pythonw -> ../Cellar/python/2.7.2/bin/pythonw
lrwxr-xr-x   1 root  wheel    37B Feb 23 00:07 pythonw2.7 -> ../Cellar/python/2.7.2/bin/pythonw2.7

Why is it that the first time I type python I get v2.7.1, but when I type the full path /usr/local/bin/python I get v2.7.2?

I installed v2.7.2 using homebrew, and I would like to use that version because I believe my Django is installed under v2.7.2 python.

share|improve this question
up vote 4 down vote accepted

Because poor bash is confused. Clear python's hash entry.

hash -d python
share|improve this answer
Thanks! Worked great. I also have a symbolic link that makes /usr/local/bin/vi follow /usr/local/bin/mvim which is MacVim, a GUI Vim for Mac. But typing hash -d vi didn't work. Typing vi still gives me the default vi. Any idea on this as well? – hobbes3 Feb 23 '12 at 5:42
Similarly which vi gives /usr/local/bin/vi, so it sounds like the same problem. ls -l on /usr/local/bin/ gives lrwxr-xr-x 1 root wheel 19B Feb 9 23:32 vi -> /usr/local/bin/mvim – hobbes3 Feb 23 '12 at 5:43
Just do a rehash, which will rebuild the entire hash table from scratch. – wjv Apr 12 at 9:41

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.