Solve the exception “error: legacy-install-failure in python”

The versatility of Python programming language makes it an important part of the programming world. Developers and programmers are using Python to develop various applications. Python libraries make life easier for programmers as they have easy access to the functionality each library offers. But, when using Python with its libraries, there are error warnings that pop up like “error: legacy-install-failure in python”. This is a library error that shows up.

You don’t need to panic when you encounter the error as no such error exists that can’t be fixed. Go ahead with the post to solve the error. But before that, let’s check out how you land up in the error

How the error occurs

When you try to download the gensim Python package, you get the error warning. This is what you get in return

note: This error originates from a subprocess, and is likely not a problem with pip.
error: legacy-install-failure

× Encountered error while trying to install package.
╰─> gensim

How to Fix the Error “error: legacy-install-failure in python”

Gensim is an open-source library used for document indexing, topic modeling, etc. When you have issues with the library you end up with the error warning. Have a look at a few successful options to fix the error

Option 1 – Upgrade pip and dependencies

To get rid of the error you need to upgrade pip, wheel, and setuptools. You just need to use a few commands to get through it. Check out the commands

First, update the pip

python -m pip install –upgrade pip

To update the wheel, use this:

pip install –upgrade wheel

Upgrade the setuptools with the following command

pip install –upgrade setuptools

Once you are done, you need to try to install the gensim package again using any of the below commands

pip3 install gensim


pip install gensim

That’s how you can resolve the issue.

Option 2 – Utilize unofficial Windows Binaries

To use gensim, you can download system files or binaries from third-party sources. Although it is not recommended to down from a third-party source, you may use it as it might be an option to use gensim.

To install the gensim on windows 10 or 11 (x64) along with having Python version 3.10 or above, you need to look for the gensim‑4.1.2‑cp310‑cp310‑win_amd64.whl file. For the installation of the file using pip, the below command can be used

pip install [path to wheel file]

Option 3 – Install Microsoft C++

Another way to handle the error is to download Microsoft C++. You can go to the official site and download the software from there.  Choose the desktop option when downloading. Once you install it, the error warning goes away.

There is an alternative to this. You can use the below command to get the same result

vs_buildtools.exe --norestart --passive --downloadThenInstall --includeRecommended --add Microsoft.VisualStudio.Workload.NativeDesktop --add Microsoft.VisualStudio.Workload.VCTools --add Microsoft.VisualStudio.Workload.MSBuildTools

After the installation, you should run the pip install command to fix the error.


In this post, we have discussed the ways to fix the error “error: legacy-install-failure in python”. You can choose the options that suit your project and the current condition.

I hope you find it helpful!

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