Debian and Ubuntu Python package paths

Debian and Ubuntu have some special rules for where Python packages go. See :

The main point of interest to us, is that Python packages that you install for the Debian / Ubuntu packaged Python go into different directories than would be the case for a non-Debian Python installation.

A non-Debian Python installation, such as Python compiled from source, will install Python packages into /usr/local/lib/pythonX.Y/site-packages by default, where X.Y is your Python version (such as 2.7).

For Debian Python, package files go into different directories depending on whether you installed the package from standard Debian packages, or using Python’s own packaging mechanisms, such as pip, easy_install or python install.

Debian Python packages installed via apt or dpkg go into a folder /usr/lib/pythonX.Y/dist-packages. You can see where files would go for any Debian / Ubuntu package with apt-file list <package-name>

pip, easy_install or python install installs go into a folder /usr/local/lib/pythonX.Y/dist-packages.