How to Use Python`s File Dialog in tkinter: See Examples and Boost Your Coding Skills Now

Table of content

  1. Introduction
  2. Installing tkinter
  3. How to create a File Dialog in tkinter
  4. Example 1: Creating a File Dialog
  5. Example 2: Adding filters to File Dialog
  6. Example 3: Handling multiple files with File Dialog
  7. Tips and Tricks for using File Dialog
  8. Conclusion


Welcome to the world of Python programming! Python is an elegant, high-level programming language that is gaining popularity for its ease of use, powerful libraries, and versatility. If you're just starting your journey with Python, you might be wondering how to learn it effectively. With so many resources available, it can be overwhelming to know where to begin.

One excellent starting point is the official Python tutorial, which covers the basics of Python syntax and data structures. This tutorial provides step-by-step instructions and interactive examples that will help you get started with Python programming in no time.

Another great way to learn Python is to subscribe to blogs and social media sites that provide tutorials and code examples. This will allow you to stay up-to-date on the latest developments in Python programming and learn from the experiences of other developers. However, be aware that not all resources are created equal, and it's important to find reliable sources that provide accurate information.

A common mistake that beginners make is to invest in expensive books or complex Integrated Development Environments (IDEs) before mastering the basics. While these resources can be helpful later on, they might not be necessary for getting started with Python.

In this tutorial, we will focus on using Python's File Dialog in tkinter. We will provide examples and step-by-step instructions that will help you boost your coding skills and build useful applications. So, grab your computer and let's get started!

Installing tkinter

To use Python's file dialog in tkinter, you must first ensure that tkinter is properly installed on your computer. If you're using an older version of Python (2.x), be aware that tkinter may not be included by default. However, if you're using a newer version (3.x), it should be included out of the box.

To confirm that tkinter is installed, simply open a Python shell and type import tkinter followed by tkinter._test(). This will launch a basic GUI window that confirms that tkinter is functioning properly.

If you receive an error message indicating that tkinter is not found, you may need to install it manually. This can typically be done by running the command sudo apt-get install python-tk on Linux, or by downloading the appropriate package for your operating system from the official Python website.

Once tkinter is properly installed, you can begin to delve into the specifics of using Python's file dialog. Remember, tinkering around with code and experimenting is a great way to learn, so don't be afraid to try new things and make mistakes along the way. Happy coding!

How to create a File Dialog in tkinter

Creating a File Dialog in tkinter can be a useful feature in your Python project. The File Dialog allows users to select files from their computer and interact with them in your program. Here’s how you can create a File Dialog in tkinter:

First, import tkinter and the file dialog module:

import tkinter as tk
from tkinter import filedialog

Then, create a function that will open the File Dialog when a button is clicked:

def open_file():
    file_path = filedialog.askopenfilename()

This function will use the askopenfilename() method to open the File Dialog and allow the user to select a file. The file path will then be printed to the console.

Next, create a button that will trigger the function when clicked:

root = tk.Tk()

open_button = tk.Button(root, text="Open", command=open_file)


This code will create a window with a button that says “Open”. Once the button is clicked, the open_file() function will be called and the File Dialog will appear.

In the function, you can add more functionality such as opening and reading the selected file, or using the file path to perform other tasks in your program.

Overall, creating a File Dialog in tkinter is relatively straightforward and can be a useful tool for interacting with files in your Python project. With a little bit of experimentation and practice, you can customize the File Dialog to fit your specific program’s needs.

Example 1: Creating a File Dialog

Creating a File Dialog is a great way to add more functionality and interactivity to your tkinter projects. Luckily, Python has a built-in module called filedialog that makes it easy to create a file dialog in your tkinter application.

To get started, you'll need to import the module by adding the following line at the beginning of your code:

from tkinter import filedialog

Once you have the module imported, you can create a file dialog by using the askopenfilename() method, which opens a dialog box that allows the user to select a file.

Here's an example code snippet that demonstrates how to use the askopenfilename() method:

import tkinter as tk
from tkinter import filedialog

root = tk.Tk()

file_path = filedialog.askopenfilename()

In this example, we first import the tkinter module and the filedialog module. We then create a new instance of the Tk class and call the withdraw() method on it to hide the root window.

Next, we create a variable called file_path and set it equal to the result of the askopenfilename() method. This method opens a file dialog and waits for the user to select a file. Once the user has selected a file, the path to that file is stored in the file_path variable.

Finally, we print the file_path variable to the console to verify that the file path was correctly selected.

And that's it! With just a few lines of code, you can now create a file dialog in your tkinter application. Feel free to experiment with different options and parameters to customize the dialog to your liking.

Example 2: Adding filters to File Dialog

To add filters to File Dialog in tkinter using Python, you can use the 'filetypes' option. This option allows you to specify a list of file extensions that will be displayed in the File Dialog. Here's an example:

from tkinter import filedialog
from tkinter import *

root = Tk()

def open_file():
    file_path = filedialog.askopenfilename(initialdir="/", title="Select file",
                                           filetypes=(("Text files", "*.txt"),
                                                      ("All files", "*.*")))

button = Button(root, text="Open File", command=open_file)


In this example, we have added a filter for text files and all files. When the user clicks on the "Open File" button, the File Dialog will open and display only files with the specified extensions.

To add more filters, simply add more tuples to the 'filetypes' option. For example:

filetypes=(("Text files", "*.txt"),
           ("Python files", "*.py"),
           ("All files", "*.*"))

This will add filters for text files, Python files, and all files.

Adding filters to File Dialog can be useful when you want to restrict the types of files that can be selected by the user, and it can also make the File Dialog more user-friendly. Try experimenting with different filters to see what works best for your application.

Example 3: Handling multiple files with File Dialog

Sometimes, we need to work with multiple files at a time. Using the file dialog is a great way to handle this situation, and fortunately, it's easy to do so in Python with tkinter.

To start, we'll need to import the necessary modules:

import tkinter as tk
from tkinter import filedialog

Then, we'll create a function to handle the file dialog:

def open_files():
    filenames = filedialog.askopenfilenames()
    # do something with the selected filenames

The askopenfilenames method allows the user to select multiple files, and returns a tuple of the selected filenames. We can then use this tuple to open the files and perform any necessary actions.

Here's an example of how we might use this function to open and print the contents of multiple files:

def open_files():
    filenames = filedialog.askopenfilenames()
    for filename in filenames:
        with open(filename) as f:
            print('File: {}'.format(filename))

With this code, we can select multiple files using the file dialog, and the contents of each file will be printed to the console.

Handling multiple files with the file dialog is a useful feature for many Python applications, and it's easy to do with tkinter. With a bit of practice, you'll be able to handle any file-related task with ease!

Tips and Tricks for using File Dialog

Using Python's File Dialog in tkinter can greatly enhance your coding experience. However, like with any tool, mastering it takes practice and some clever tips and tricks. Here are a few that can help you make the most out of the File Dialog feature:

  1. Specify file types: you can use the filetypes parameter to specify which file extensions should be displayed when the Dialog window is opened. This can save you time from having to sift through files that are irrelevant to your project.

  2. Customize the Dialog window: besides specifying file types, you can also control other attributes of the File Dialog window. For example, you can set its title, size, and positioning on the screen.

  3. Handle file selection: once the user selects a file, you need to handle its contents. You can do this in various ways, such as reading the file into a variable, passing it as an argument to a function, or using it to update a user interface element.

  4. Add error handling: be sure to add error handling to your File Dialog code, as users can easily make mistakes, such as selecting the wrong file or cancelling the operation altogether. You can use try-except blocks or if-else statements to anticipate and handle such situations gracefully.

  5. Test your code: always test your File Dialog code thoroughly to ensure it works as intended. You can try different scenarios, such as selecting non-existing files, invalid file types, or large files. This can help you catch and fix issues before they become bigger problems.

By applying these tips and tricks, you can become more proficient in using Python's File Dialog in tkinter. Remember to experiment, learn from your mistakes, and never be afraid to ask for help or consult online resources. Happy coding!


In , learning how to use Python's file dialog in tkinter is a valuable skill to have in your coding toolbox. Not only does it allow you to create more interactive and user-friendly programs, but it also expands your understanding of Python's capabilities beyond just basic programming.

As with any new skill, the key is to start small and gradually build up your knowledge and experience. Begin by reviewing the official Python tutorial and experimenting with basic examples of file dialog usage. Then, as you gain confidence, try adding more complex features and customizations.

Don't be afraid to make mistakes or ask for help when you get stuck. There are many resources available online, from blogs and forums to social media groups and coding communities. Just remember to avoid common pitfalls like buying expensive books or jumping into advanced IDEs before you've mastered the basics.

By following these tips and putting in the practice, you can boost your Python skills and take your coding abilities to the next level. So what are you waiting for? Start exploring the world of file dialog in tkinter today!

My passion for coding started with my very first program in Java. The feeling of manipulating code to produce a desired output ignited a deep love for using software to solve practical problems. For me, software engineering is like solving a puzzle, and I am fully engaged in the process. As a Senior Software Engineer at PayPal, I am dedicated to soaking up as much knowledge and experience as possible in order to perfect my craft. I am constantly seeking to improve my skills and to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and technologies in the field. I have experience working with a diverse range of programming languages, including Ruby on Rails, Java, Python, Spark, Scala, Javascript, and Typescript. Despite my broad experience, I know there is always more to learn, more problems to solve, and more to build. I am eagerly looking forward to the next challenge and am committed to using my skills to create impactful solutions.

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