Which Python?

You’ll need Python 3.7 or greater.

We recommend using the Mambaforge Python distribution. This installs Python and the mamba package manager. Miniforge and Miniconda will install Python and the conda package manager. Differences to note, in a nutshell:

  • mamba is much faster than conda, but has identical commands.

  • Mambaforge and miniforge are community driven installers, installing by default from the conda-forge channel.

  • Miniconda is a company driven (Anaconda) installer, installing by default from the anaconda channel.

  • Installing from the anaconda channel has certain (legal) limitations for “commercial use”.

Installing Mambaforge/Miniforge/Miniconda does not require administrative rights to your computer and doesn’t interfere with any other Python installations in your system.


The imod Python package makes extensive use of the modern scientific Python ecosystem. The most important dependencies are listed here.

Data structures:

Delayed/out-of-core computation, parallellization:

Spatial operations:

Geospatial libaries (optional):

Data provisioning for examples:


Installing all these dependencies requires around 2.5 gigabyte of space; Installing only the required dependencies (via pip) requires around 0.5 gigabyte.

Installing with mamba

You can install imod using the mamba package manager that comes with the Mambaforge distribution:

mamba install imod --channel conda-forge

mamba will automatically find the appropriate versions of the dependencies and install them. Installing with mamba or conda will automatically download all optional dependencies, and enable all functionality.

Installing with conda

Alternatively, you can also use the conda package manager. Like mamba, conda will also infer the appropriate versions of the dependencies and install them. However, it generally takes around a factor 5 longer to do so, but may be worthwhile if mamba is unstable or buggy:

conda install imod --channel conda-forge

Installing with pip

Finally, you can also use the pip package manager:

pip install imod

Unlike installing with conda or mamba, installing with pip will not install all optional dependencies. This results in a far smaller installation, but it means that not all functionality is directly available.

Refer to Installing Python and packages in the FAQ section for background information on mamba, conda, and pip.

Installing the latest development version

You can use pip to install the latest source from Gitlab:

pip install git+

Alternatively, you can clone the git repository locally and install from there:

git clone
cd imod
pip install .