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software development and life.


Setting up development tools on Mac OS X

Because I now use a Macbook for development, I had to install some stuff I needed for development. Unfortunately, Mac OS X does not provide a convenient method to install all the stuff using a single tool (such as apt-get/Synaptic on Ubuntu), but installing some basic stuff is not very difficult. After some research, I choose to install the following packages:

  • MySQL
  • PostgreSQL
  • PHP 5
  • Eclipse

Read on for the location of the packages I used

I’ve installed the MySQL package for Mac OS X provided by MySQL AB. This package is very easy to install and even provides a plugin for the Configuration panel of Mac OS X for easy starting and stopping the database. MySQL also provides some graphical tools for Mac OS X for administrating the database and creating queries for it.

The PostgreSQL project does not provide packages for Mac OS X, but it is possible to compile the database from source for this operating system. However, provides binary packages for Mac OS X, which installs the database in /usr/local/. The package contains an installer, making the installiation a breeze.

Mac OS X contains PHP by default, however, this is a older version (version 4.4.4 on my system). Considering the fact that PHP 4 is not supported anymore in the feature, you probably want PHP 5. provides PHP 5 packages for the default Apache server (version 1.3) supplied with Mac OS X Tiger. This package also contains a graphical installer, making the installation very easy. The Apache configuration is also adapted to use PHP 5, enabling you to store your PHP 5 pages in your home directory in the Sites directory.

Eclipse is a very powerful development environment. Since a few weeks, there is also a very powerful PHP plugin availble for this platform, making the development of PHP applications in this IDE very easy. An all-in-one package consisting of Eclipse and the required plugins for the PHP IDE is available at

Subversion is not available by default on Mac OS X (CVS is, however). Binary packages are available from the Subversion developers which installs the version control system to /usr/local (/usr/local/bin should you add to your PATH environment variable). If you want to maintain a subversion repository on your Mac, you should also upgrade Apache to version 2, because the older versions do not support WebDAV, which is used by Subversion to make the repository available to the outside world. Because I have a Linux server hosting my subversion repository, I don’t have experience with doing this.

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