How to Fix the "Conda Command Not Recognized" Issue on Windows 10

If you're delving into the world of Python development, chances are you've encountered Anaconda. It's a powerful platform that simplifies package management and deployment for Python (and R) languages. However, sometimes, after a seemingly successful installation on Windows 10, you might try to run the conda command in the Command Prompt only to be greeted with an error saying the command is not recognized. This can be frustrating, especially for beginners. But worry not, as this issue is typically easy to resolve.

Understanding the Problem

The root cause of the "Conda command not recognized" error is usually related to the system's PATH environment variable. The PATH variable helps your operating system locate executables from the command line or Terminal window. If Anaconda's scripts directory isn't added to your PATH, Windows won't know where to find the conda command.

The Solution

There are a couple of ways to resolve this issue, and we'll go through them step by step.

Method 1: Adding Conda to the PATH Manually

  1. Find Your Anaconda Installation Directory: This is where you installed Anaconda on your system. If you didn't change the default location during installation, it's likely in your user directory (C:\Users\YourUsername\Anaconda3).

  2. Edit the System Environment Variables:

    • Right-click on the ‘This PC’ or ‘My Computer’ icon on your desktop, and select ‘Properties’.
    • Click on ‘Advanced system settings’ on the left side.
    • In the System Properties window, go to the ‘Advanced’ tab and click on ‘Environment Variables…’.
  3. Update the PATH Variable:

    • In the Environment Variables window, look for the ‘Path’ variable under ‘System variables’.
    • Select it and click ‘Edit…’.
    • In the Edit Environment Variable window, click ‘New’ and add the path to your Anaconda directory followed by \Scripts. It should look something like this: C:\Users\YourUsername\Anaconda3\Scripts.
    • Click ‘OK’ on all open windows to apply the changes.
  4. Restart your Command Prompt and try running the conda command again. It should now be recognized.

Method 2: Reinstall Anaconda with PATH Option Enabled

If the first method doesn't work or seems too complicated, you can opt to reinstall Anaconda and make sure to enable the option that adds Anaconda to your system's PATH during installation:

  1. Uninstall Anaconda: Go to ‘Add or Remove Programs’ in Windows, find Anaconda, and uninstall it.

  2. Reinstall Anaconda: Download the latest version of Anaconda from the official website and start the installation process.

  3. Enable PATH Option: During installation, you'll see an option to "Add Anaconda to my PATH environment variable". Make sure to check this box. Note that the installer warns against this because it can interfere with other software. However, if you're primarily using Anaconda for your Python development, it should be fine.

  4. Complete the Installation and Test: Finish the installation process and open a new Command Prompt window. Type conda and press Enter. If everything was done correctly, you should no longer see the error message.


The "Conda command not recognized" error on Windows 10 is a common hurdle for Python developers. However, by ensuring that the Anaconda installation path is correctly added to the system's PATH variable, you can overcome this issue smoothly. Whether you choose to manually edit the PATH or reinstall Anaconda with the PATH option enabled, you'll be back to exploring Anaconda's vast ecosystem of packages and tools in no time.