Using the .condarc conda configuration file#


The conda configuration file, .condarc, is an optional runtime configuration file that allows advanced users to configure various aspects of conda, such as which channels it searches for packages, proxy settings, and environment directories. For all of the conda configuration options, see the configuration page.


A .condarc file can also be used in an administrator-controlled installation to override the users’ configuration. See Administering a multi-user conda installation.

The .condarc file can change many parameters, including:

  • Where conda looks for packages.

  • If and how conda uses a proxy server.

  • Where conda lists known environments.

  • Whether to update the Bash prompt with the currently activated environment name.

  • Whether user-built packages should be uploaded to

  • What default packages or features to include in new environments.

Creating and editing#

The .condarc file is not included by default, but it is automatically created in your home directory the first time you run the conda config command. To create or modify a .condarc file, open a terminal and enter the conda config command.

The .condarc configuration file follows simple YAML syntax.


conda config --add channels conda-forge

Alternatively, you can open a text editor such as Notepad on Windows, TextEdit on macOS, or VS Code. Name the new file .condarc and save it to your user home directory or root directory. To edit the .condarc file, open it from your home or root directory and make edits in the same way you would with any other text file. If the .condarc file is in the root environment, it will override any in the home directory.

You can find information about your .condarc file by typing conda info in your terminal. This will give you information about your .condarc file, including where it is located.

You can also download a sample .condarc file to edit in your editor and save to your user home directory or root directory.

To set configuration options, edit the .condarc file directly or use the conda config --set command.


To set the auto_update_conda option to False, run:

conda config --set auto_update_conda False

For a complete list of conda config commands, see the command reference. The same list is available at the terminal by running conda config --help. You can also see the conda channel configuration for more information.

Conda supports a wide range of configuration options. This page gives a non-exhaustive list of the most frequently used options and their usage. For a complete list of all available options for your version of conda, use the conda config --describe command.

Searching for .condarc#

Conda looks in the following locations for a .condarc file:

if on_win:


XDG_CONFIG_HOME is the path to where user-specific configuration files should be stored defined following The XDG Base Directory Specification (XDGBDS). Default to $HOME/.config should be used. CONDA_ROOT is the path for your base conda install. CONDA_PREFIX is the path to the current active environment. CONDARC must be a path to a file named .condarc, condarc, or end with a YAML suffix (.yml or .yaml).


Any condarc files that exist in any of these special search path directories need to end in a valid yaml extension (".yml" or ".yaml").

Conflict merging strategy#

When conflicts between configurations arise, the following strategies are employed:

  • Lists - merge

  • Dictionaries - merge

  • Primitive - clobber


The precedence by which the conda configuration is built out is shown below. Each new arrow takes precedence over the ones before it. For example, config files (by parse order) will be superseded by any of the other configuration options. Configuration environment variables (formatted like CONDA_<CONFIG NAME>) will always take precedence over the other 3.


Obtaining information from the .condarc file#

You can use the following commands to get the effective settings for conda. The effective settings are those that have merged settings from all the sources mentioned above.

To get all keys and their values:

conda config --get

To get the value of a specific key, such as channels:

conda config --get channels

To show all the configuration file sources and their contents:

conda config --show-sources

Saving settings to your .condarc file#

The .condarc file can also be modified via conda commands. Below are several examples of how to do this.

To add a new value, such as, to a specific key, such as channels:

conda config --add channels

To remove an existing value, such as from a specific key, such as channels:

conda config --remove channels

To remove a key, such as channels, and all of its values:

conda config --remove-key channels

To configure channels and their priority for a single environment, make a .condarc file in the root directory of that environment.

Sample .condarc file#

Because the .condarc file is just a YAML file, it means that it can be edited directly. Below is an example .condarc file:

# This is a sample .condarc file.
# It adds the r channel and enables
# the show_channel_urls option.

# channel locations. These override conda defaults, i.e., conda will
# search *only* the channels listed here, in the order given.
# Use "defaults" to automatically include all default channels.
# Non-url channels will be interpreted as usernames
# (this can be changed by modifying the channel_alias key; see below).
# The default is just 'defaults'.
  - r
  - defaults

# Show channel URLs when displaying what is going to be downloaded
# and in 'conda list'. The default is False.
show_channel_urls: True

# For more information about this file see: