Standard install

You can install the library from PyPi:

pip install pylablib

If you already have it installed, you can upgrade it to get the newest version:

pip install -U pylablib

This will install the full set of dependencies: basic dependencies and computing packages (numpy, scipy, pandas, numba, rpyc), basic device communication packages (pyft232, pyvisa, pyserial, pyusb), and PyQt5-based GUI (pyqt5 and pyqtgraph). You can also install additional device library dependencies (nidaqmx and websocket-client) using the extra requirements feature of pip:

pip install -U pylablib[devio-full]

Minimal install

In case you do not want some of these packages installed, or they are unavailable on your platform, you can install a lightweight version of pylablib called pylablib-lightweight. It contains exactly the same code, but has only the most basic dependencies (numpy, scipy, and pandas):

pip install -U pylablib-lightweight

With this, the basic functionality (such as data processing or file IO) will work, but more advanced features such as device communication and GUI, will require additional packages. In most cases, the raised errors will notify which packages are missing. These can be installed either manually, or using the extra requirements:

  • [extra] extra packages used in some situations: numba (speeds up some data processing) and rpyc (communication between different PCs)
  • [devio] basic devio packages: pyft232, pyvisa, pyserial, and pyusb
  • [devio-extra] additional devio packages: nidaqmx and websocket-client
  • [gui-pyqt5] PyQt5-based GUI: pyqt5 and pyqtgraph. Should not be used together with [gui-pyside2]
  • [gui-pyside2] PySide2-based GUI: pyside2 and pyqtgraph. Should not be used together with [gui-pyqt5]

The options can be combined. For example,

pip install pylablib-lightweight[extra,devio,gui-pyside2]

installs the dependencies as the usual pylablib distribution, but with PySide2 Qt5 backend instead of PyQt5.

Anaconda install

The package is also available on Anaconda via conda-forge channel. To install it, run

conda install -c conda-forge pylablib

in the Anaconda prompt.

The Anaconda version of pylablib comes with all the standard dependencies except for pyft232 , nidaqmx and websocket-client, which are not available on conda-forge channel. This means, that Thorlabs APT/Kinesis, NI DAQs, and some functionality of M2 Solstis laser are not accessible. To use those, it is recommended to either install those packages explicitly via pip (keep in mind that it can break Anaconda environment), or use a standalone Python distribution.


To access to the most common features simply import the library:

import pylablib as pll
# Create a parameter dictionary (e.g., for some processing script)
parameters = pll.Dictionary({"par/x":1, "par/y":2, "par/z":[3,4,5], "out":"result"})
pll.save_dict(parameters, "parameters.dat")  # save parameters to a text file

More advanced features (e.g., device communication) should be imported directly:

from pylablib.devices import Andor  # import Andor devices module
cam = Andor.AndorSDK2Camera()  # connect to Andor SDK2 camera (e.g., iXon)
cam.set_exposure(0.1)  # set exposure to 100ms
frame = cam.snap()  # grab a single frame
cam.close()  # close the connection

Dependencies and requirements

The basic package dependencies are NumPy for basic computations and overall array interface, SciPy for advanced computations (interpolation, optimization, special functions), and pandas for heterogeneous tables (DataFrame). In addition, it is recommended to have Numba package to speed up some computations. Finally, if you use options for remote computing and communication between different PCs, you need to install RPyC. Note that when installed directly from pip, numpy comes with the OpenBLAS version of the linear algebra library; if other version (e.g., Intel MKL) is preferred, it is a good idea to have numpy already installed before installing pylablib.

The main device communication packages are PyVISA and pySerial, which cover the majority of devices. Several devices (e.g., Thorlabs Kinesis and Attocube ANC 350) require additional communication packages: pyft232 and PyUSB. Finally, some particular devices completely or partially rely on specific packages: NI-DAQmx for NIDAQ and websocket-client for additional M2 Solstis functionality.

Finally, GUI and advanced multi-threading relies on Qt5, which has two possible options. The first (default) option is PyQt5 with sip for some memory management functionality. Note that while newer PyQt5 versions >=5.11 already come with PyQt5-sip, older versions require a separate sip installation. Hence, if you use an older PyQt5 version, you need to install sip separately. The second possible Qt5 option is PySide2 with shiboken2. Both PyQt5 and PySide2 should work equally well, and the choice mostly depends on what is already installed, because having both PyQt5 and PySide2 might lead to conflicts. Finally, plotting relies on pyqtgraph, which, starting with version 0.11m is compatible with both PySide2 and PyQt5.

The package has been tested with Python 3.6 through 3.9, and is incompatible with Python 2. The last version officially supporting Python 2.7 is 0.4.0. Furthermore, testing has been mostly performed on 64-bit Python. This is the recommended option, as 32-bit version limitations (most notably, limited amount of accessible RAM) mean that it should only be used when absolutely necessary, e.g., when some required packages or libraries are only available in 32-bit version.

Installing from GitHub

The most recent and extensive, but less tested and documented, version of this library is available on GitHub at There are several versions of installing it:

  • Install using pip using GitHub as a library source:

    pip install -U git+
  • Download it as a zip-file and unpack it into any appropriate place (can be folder of the project you’re working on, Python site-packages folder, or any folder added to PATH or PYTHONPATH variable).

    To download the code of a specific version, you can choose it in the dropdown Branch menu under Tags tab. This is the same code as available on PyPi.

    Keep in mind that, unlike the first method, the required packages will not be automatically installed, so this has to be done manually:

    pip install numpy scipy pandas numba rpyc
    pip install pyft232 pyvisa pyserial pyusb nidaqmx websocket-client
    pip install pyqt5 pyqtgraph
  • Clone the repository to your computer In order to easily get updates in order to easily get updates. For that, you need to install Git (, and use the following commands in the command line (in the folder where you want to store the library):

    git clone
    cd ./pyLabLib

    Whenever you want to update to the most recent version, simply type

    git pull

    in the library folder. Keep in mind that any changes that you make to the library code might conflict with the new version that you pull from GitHub, so you should not modify anything in this folder if possible.

Support and feedback

If you have any issues, suggestions, or feedback, you can either raise an issue on GitHub at, or send an e-mail to