Running TensorFlow for Windows

Tensorflow is a code library of sophisticated machine learning algorithms. TensorFlow was created on, and intended for use on Linux machines. However, several weeks ago, a version of TensorFlow for Windows was released by the TF guys.

TensorFlow for Windows is pretty rough around the edges but I was able to get a fairly complex demo running. I went to and clicked on the Install tab and found instructions for installing TF on Windows. The first requirement was Python 3.5 (you access the TF code library using Python).

I like Python, but the split between Python 2 and Python 3 is really, really irritating. I blew away my existing Python installation and then went to and found a link to a self-extracting executable installer. The installation went smoothly.


Next, I edited my System environment PATH variable so that my shell commands would find python.exe and the pip3.exe installer.


Then I verified that Python was working by launching a Windows shell and issuing a python –version command. Then I installed TensorFlow for Windows.

(prompt) python --verion
Python 3.5.3
(prompt) pip3 install --upgrade tensorflow
. . .
Successfully installed . . . 


Finally I verified TensorFlow by printing a Hello message:

>>> import tensorflow as tf
>>> h = tf.constant('Hello message from TF!')
>>> s = tf.Session()
>>> print(

The shell spewed all kinds of warning messages but eventually printed my message. I will describe how I got a demo of image recognition using a convolutional neural network to run in a future blog post.


Bottom line: If you use Windows, TensorFlow for Windows is almost ready for mainstream use.

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