All the examples below assume that you are running inside a Python virtual environment. See: for details. We also assume that pip is up to date.

For example:

  • Windows:

    py -m venv pymupdf-venv
    python -m pip install --upgrade pip
  • Linux, MacOS:

    python -m venv pymupdf-venv
    . pymupdf-venv/bin/activate
    python -m pip install --upgrade pip


PyMuPDF should be installed using pip with:

pip install --upgrade pymupdf

This will install from a Python wheel if one is available for your platform.

Installation when a suitable wheel is not available#

If a suitable Python wheel is not available, pip will automatically build from source using a Python sdist.

This requires C/C++ development tools to be installed:

  • On Windows:

    • Install Visual Studio 2019. If not installed in a standard location, set environmental variable PYMUPDF_SETUP_DEVENV to the location of the binary.

    • Having other installed versions of Visual Studio, for example Visual Studio 2022, can cause problems because one can end up with MuPDF and PyMuPDF code being compiled with different compiler versions.

The build will automatically download and build MuPDF.

Problems after installation#


Wheels are available for Windows (32-bit Intel, 64-bit Intel), Linux (64-bit Intel, 64-bit ARM) and Mac OSX (64-bit Intel, 64-bit ARM), for Python versions marked as “Supported” on

Wheels are not available for Python installed with Chocolatey on Windows. Instead install Python using the Windows installer from the website, see:

PyMuPDF does not support Python versions prior to 3.8. Older wheels can be found in this repository and on PyPI. Please note that we generally follow the official Python release schedules. For Python versions dropping out of official support this means, that generation of wheels will also be ceased for them.

There are no mandatory external dependencies. However, some optional feature are available only if additional components are installed:

  • Pillow is required for Pixmap.pil_save() and Pixmap.pil_tobytes().

  • fontTools is required for Document.subset_fonts().

  • pymupdf-fonts is a collection of nice fonts to be used for text output methods.

  • Tesseract-OCR for optical character recognition in images and document pages. Tesseract is separate software, not a Python package. To enable OCR functions in PyMuPDF, the software must be installed and the system environment variable "TESSDATA_PREFIX" must be defined and contain the tessdata folder name of the Tesseract installation location. See below.


You can install these additional components at any time – before or after installing PyMuPDF. PyMuPDF will detect their presence during import or when the respective functions are being used.

Build and install from a local PyMuPDF source tree#

Initial setup:

  • Install C/C++ development tools as described above.

  • Enter a Python venv and update pip, as described above.

  • Get a PyMuPDF source tree:

Then one can build PyMuPDF in two ways:

  • Build and install PyMuPDF with default MuPDF version:

    cd PyMuPDF && pip install .

    This will automatically download a specific hard-coded MuPDF source release, and build it into PyMuPDF.

  • Or build and install PyMuPDF using a local MuPDF source tree:

    • Clone the MuPDF git repository:

      git clone --recursive
    • Build PyMuPDF, specifying the location of the local MuPDF tree with the environmental variables PYMUPDF_SETUP_MUPDF_BUILD:

      cd PyMuPDF && PYMUPDF_SETUP_MUPDF_BUILD=../mupdf pip install .

Also, one can build for different Python versions in the same PyMuPDF tree:

  • PyMuPDF will build for the version of Python that is being used to run pip. To run pip with a specific Python version, use python -m pip instead of pip.

    So for example on Windows one can build different versions with:

    cd PyMuPDF && py -3.9 -m pip install .


    cd PyMuPDF && py -3.10-32 -m pip install .

Running tests#

Having a PyMuPDF tree available allows one to run PyMuPDF’s pytest test suite:

pip install pytest fontTools
pytest PyMuPDF/tests

Notes about using a non-default MuPDF#

Using a non-default build of MuPDF by setting environmental variable PYMUPDF_SETUP_MUPDF_BUILD can cause various things to go wrong and so is not generally supported:

  • If MuPDF’s major version number differs from what PyMuPDF uses by default, PyMuPDF can fail to build, because MuPDF’s API can change between major versions.

  • Runtime behaviour of PyMuPDF can change because MuPDF’s runtime behaviour changes between different minor releases. This can also break some PyMuPDF tests.

  • If MuPDF was built with its default config instead of PyMuPDF’s customised config (for example if MuPDF is a system install), it is possible that tests/ will fail. One can skip this particular test by adding -k 'not test_textbox3' to the pytest command line.


See Packaging for Linux distributions.

Using with Pyodide#

See Pyodide.

Enabling Integrated OCR Support#

If you do not intend to use this feature, skip this step. Otherwise, it is required for both installation paths: from wheels and from sources.

PyMuPDF will already contain all the logic to support OCR functions. But it additionally does need Tesseract’s language support data.

The language support folder location must be communicated either via storing it in the environment variable "TESSDATA_PREFIX", or as a parameter in the applicable functions.

So for a working OCR functionality, make sure to complete this checklist:

  1. Locate Tesseract’s language support folder. Typically you will find it here:
    • Windows: C:/Program Files/Tesseract-OCR/tessdata

    • Unix systems: /usr/share/tesseract-ocr/4.00/tessdata

  2. Set the environment variable TESSDATA_PREFIX
    • Windows: setx TESSDATA_PREFIX "C:/Program Files/Tesseract-OCR/tessdata"

    • Unix systems: declare -x TESSDATA_PREFIX=/usr/share/tesseract-ocr/4.00/tessdata


On Windows systems, this must happen outside Python – before starting your script. Just manipulating os.environ will not work!

This software is provided AS-IS with no warranty, either express or implied. This software is distributed under license and may not be copied, modified or distributed except as expressly authorized under the terms of that license. Refer to licensing information at or contact Artifex Software Inc., 39 Mesa Street, Suite 108A, San Francisco CA 94129, United States for further information.

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