Free Python Compilers, Interpreters and Implementations

Free compilers, interpreters, standalone packagers for the Python programming language

Free Python Compilers and Interpreters

This page lists free Python interpreters, compilers, translators, implementations and binary distributions. For those who are not familiar with Python, it is an object-oriented interpreted programming language that has been used for web programming, game development, development of a variety of desktop software, and so on. It has a dynamic type system and a garbage collector. The Python syntax was designed with code readability in mind.

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Free Python Interpreters, Compilers and Translators

Codon New

Codon is a Python compiler that generates native machine code for Linux and macOS without any runtime dependency. It is not a drop-in replacement for Python, though it supports a large portion of Python's syntax and many of its modules. Some of the language's dynamic features are also disallowed. The compiler is free only for non-production use (see their website for details).

Python (CPython)

Python is an interpreted object-oriented programming language with many adherents on the Net. To quote from the Python FAQ, "it incorporates modules, exceptions, dynamic typing, very high level dynamic data types, and classes." It supports numerous versions of Unices (including, of course, Linux), Windows, Mac, OS/2 and even MSDOS. This version of Python, often known as CPython because it was written in C (another programming language), is the reference implementation of the language. It's also probably the most widely used.


Nuitka generates C code from your Python source file. The output can then be compiled with a modern C compiler (the GNU gcc, clang, or Microsoft Visual C++). It accepts every construct supported by CPython 2.6, 2.7, 3.3, 3.4, 3.5, 3.6 and 3.7. Note that the resulting binary still relies on CPython, although if you use the --standalone flag, it will create standalone distribution directories that will include CPython. You can find precompiled packages for Windows, macOS and Linux. The program is released under the open source Apache License 2.0.

Stackless Python

Stackless Python enhances the Python programming language to include support for threads, or specifically, microthreads. It provides tasklets that can wrap functions that you wish to be launched as microthreads. Also available are channels that allow bidirectional communications between your tasklets, a round-robin scheduling facility, and serialisation. Precompiled binaries (executables) for Windows and Mac OS X are available. If you use Linux or some other Unix variant, you can simply download the source code and compile it yourself. This implementation of Python is apparently used in some multiplayer online games (like EVE Online and Second Life).

Shed Skin

Shed Skin compiles your python code to C++. At the time this is written, Shed Skin requires that your Python code be statically typed, that is, your variables should only have a single type. Moreover, some Python features (such as nested functions and variable number of arguments) are not supported, and only some standard library modules are available for use. The compiler is released under the GNU GPL.


For those who need to write browser-based programs (client-side; that is, programs that run in your visitor's web browser itself) but don't want to use JavaScript, Skulpt may be your cup of tea. It allows you to write your programs in Python, place them as .py files on your site, import them from your page, and let the Skulpt Python interpreter execute them. The interpreter itself is written in JavaScript, and it is released under either the MIT or the PSFL v2 licence (probably at your option).


Jython compiles your Python code to Java bytecode, allowing your Python program to run on any system that has a Java runtime installed. It supports both static and dynamic compilation. Your Python code can also extend any Java classes. Since this Python implementation is itself written in Java, it runs on any platform supporting the Java virtual machine.

py2exe - Python to Windows EXE

py2exe converts your Python programs to standalone Windows executables that can run without your users needing to install Python. Note that this is not a native code compiler; your code is still interpreted. py2exe merely provides all the necessary pieces so that when your end users double-click on your executable, the Python interpreter will start up to interpret your code. py2exe is released under the Mozilla Public License.


Those who prefer to code their programs in Python, and yet want to write programs that are executed in a web browser can now do so with this compiler. Pyjs (formerly "Pyjamas") is a Python to JavaScript translator; that is, it translates your Python code into its JavaScript equivalent so that your program can run in a web browser. It comes with an AJAX framework and a Widget Set API. The AJAX framework is intended to handle the differences between JavaScript and DOM support between the different browsers so that you don't have to worry about that in your program.


IronPython implements the Python programming language on the Microsoft .NET framework. It supports dynamic compilation, has an interactive console, and your Python scripts can interact with .NET objects. It is licensed under the Microsoft Public License. The software has reached its final version, and is no longer being maintained.


ActivePython is a Python distribution for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. Note that only the Community Edition is free.

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