Difference between revisions of "Octave for macOS"

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GNU Octave is primarily developed on GNU/Linux and other POSIX conformant systems.  
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GNU Octave is primarily developed on GNU/Linux and other POSIX conformant systems. On macOS systems GNU Octave can be installed
GNU Octave for Mac OS X is readily available using [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Package_management_system package managers] such as [http://www.finkproject.org/ Fink], [http://www.macports.org/ MacPorts], and [http://mxcl.github.com/homebrew/ Homebrew].
+
* from a single [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apple_Disk_Image dmg-file], a macOS App Bundle called "Octave.app" in recent versions, or
 +
* by using a macOS [[#Package Managers|package manager]].
  
About version numbers (as of January 2014):
+
{{Note|'''GNU Octave {{Release}}''' is the current stable release.}}
  
*The 3.8.x are current releases.
+
== macOS App Bundles ==
*The 3.6.x are previous releases.
 
*The 3.4.x are very old releases.
 
  
==Octave server VM installer for OSX 10.10 Yosemite and OS X 10.11 El Capitan==
+
The [https://octave-app.org/ Octave.app project] ([https://github.com/octave-app GitHub page]) provides an unofficial ready-to-use macOS App Bundle installer based on [[#Homebrew|Homebrew]] (see below).
[http://deepneural.blogspot.fr/p/welcome.html Configuration files] that cause Vagrant to automatically download and configure an Octave server VM under OS X including 10.10 Yosemite. The install process pulls down the latest stable Linux version of Octave at the time of installation. All software used in running this server VM is open source (Vagrant, VirtualBox, Octave). The Octave server will run headless, and display the Octave GUI and graphics on the host via the Mac's native X-windows server. The recommended configuration ensures that by default user files written by the GUI are in a folder shared with the Mac's filesystem, and the VM suspends automatically when the user quits the GUI. Any edited files then persist in the Mac's shared folder.
+
* [https://octave-app.org/Developer-Downloads.html macOS App Bundle of Octave 5.2.0 Beta (with GUI)]
 +
* [https://octave-app.org/Download.html macOS App Bundle of Octave 4.4.x (with GUI)]
  
==Binary installer for OSX 10.9.1==
+
An older installer is hosted on SourceForge.
 +
* [https://sourceforge.net/projects/octave/files/Octave%20MacOSX%20Binary/2016-07-11-binary-octave-4.0.3/octave_gui_403_appleblas.dmg/download macOS App Bundle of Octave 4.0.3 (with GUI)]  (OS X 10.9+)
  
A [http://sourceforge.net/projects/octave/files/Octave%20MacOSX%20Binary/2013-12-30%20binary%20installer%20of%20Octave%203.8.0%20for%20OSX%2010.9.1%20%28beta%29/ binary installer] for Mavericks can be found on Octave Forge.
+
== Package Managers ==
  
This installer will install all binaries for GNU Octave 3.8.0 itself and its dependencies under
+
A package manager is a software tool to automate the process of installing, upgrading, configuring, and removing software packages for a computer's operating system in a consistent manner. It typically maintains a database of software dependencies and version information to prevent software mismatches and missing prerequisites.
 
 
  /usr/local/octave/3.8.0
 
 
 
And will create two entries in the Applications folder
 
 
 
/Applications/Octave-cli.app
 
/Applications/Octave-gui.app
 
 
 
Which will start Octave in CLI and GUI mode respectively, these are just small wrappers containing a startup script and an icon to allow launching Octave from the Finder.
 
 
 
If you wish to uninstall GNU Octave 3.8.0 and all other software installed by this installer you can simply move the three folders listed above to the Trash. Notice that you will need to authenticate with an administrator password to be allowed to do so.
 
 
 
You may need to override Gatekeeper to allow installation. You may find instructions about how to do this on [http://support.apple.com/kb/ht5290 this page] in the section labeled "How to open an app from a unidentified developer and exempt it from Gatekeeper".  
 
  
In short:
 
 
* In Finder, Control-click or right click the icon of the app.
 
* Select Open from the top of contextual menu that appears.
 
* Click Open in the dialog box. If prompted, enter an administrator name and password.
 
 
This installer is known to work on OSX 10.9.1, you may try, at your own risk, to use it for installing on other system versions but it is not guaranteed to work.
 
 
==Manual Installation from Source==
 
 
The page [[Octave for Mac]] provides minimalistic instructions for building Octave from source on Mac OS X. Additional [http://www.gnu.org/software/octave/support.html support] for those who need assistance in building Octave is available.
 
 
==Package Managers==
 
 
A package manager is a software tool to automate the process of installing, upgrading, configuring, and removing software packages for a computer's operating system in a consistent manner. It typically maintains a database of software dependencies and version information to prevent software mismatches and missing prerequisites.
 
 
Packages are distributions of software, applications and data. Packages also contain metadata, such as the software's name, description of its purpose, version number, vendor, checksums, and a list of dependencies necessary for the software to run properly. Upon installation, metadata is stored in a local package database.
 
Packages are distributions of software, applications and data. Packages also contain metadata, such as the software's name, description of its purpose, version number, vendor, checksums, and a list of dependencies necessary for the software to run properly. Upon installation, metadata is stored in a local package database.
Operating systems based on Linux and other Unix-like systems typically consist of hundreds or even thousands of distinct software packages; in the former case, a package management system is a convenience, in the latter case it becomes essential.
 
  
There are three reputable package managers available for Mac OS X. GNU Octave for Mac OS X is readily available using [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Package_management_system package managers] such as [http://www.finkproject.org/ Fink], [http://www.macports.org/ MacPorts], and [http://brew.sh/ Homebrew].
+
All package managers below are given in alphabetical order. The Octave developers do not recommend a certain package manager.
  
The most recent version of Fink's Octave package, MacPorts' Octave port, and Homebrew's Octave formula are generally not the same. Please check the web sites for these package managers to determine if the version of Octave you desire is available.
+
=== Homebrew ===
 +
''Latest Octave: [https://formulae.brew.sh/formula/octave Version 5.2.0]''
  
===Xcode Dependency===
+
[https://brew.sh/ Homebrew] was written 2009 by Max Howell and has gained popularity in the Ruby on Rails community and earned praise for its extensibility.
  
Each package manager requires that Xcode be installed. In part this is to provide an initial set of development tools. It *may* be possible to substitute the [https://github.com/kennethreitz/osx-gcc-installer Mac OS X gcc Installer] by Kenneth Reitz, but this alternative has not yet been tested. If any curious/industrious users experiment with using Kenneth's solution over Apple's Xcode, please let Octave's developers know of the results. Or, if you prefer, just update the itemized list below. It is recommended that users with Xcode already installed avoid installing Kenneth's solution, as it may break your existing Xcode installation.
+
'''Install GNU Octave using Homebrew:'''
* Fink: The Mac OS X gcc Installer has not been tested.
 
* MacPorts: The Mac OS X gcc Installer has not been tested.
 
* Homebrew: The Mac OS X gcc Installer has not been tested.
 
  
===Fink===
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# Install [https://developer.apple.com/xcode/ Xcode] via the '''Mac App Store'''.
 +
#* Install the '''Command Line Tools''' by [https://support.apple.com/guide/terminal/open-or-quit-terminal-apd5265185d-f365-44cb-8b09-71a064a42125/mac opening a terminal] and type <pre>sudo xcode-select --install</pre>
 +
# Follow [https://brew.sh/ Homebrew's installation instructions].
 +
# Ensure brew itself has the latest definitions <pre>brew update</pre>
 +
# Install Octave <ref>Homebrew has updated some of its scripts. To install Octave as of May 14, 2020, provide the migrated full path by running <code>brew install homebrew/core/octave</code> instead. [Citation needed!]</ref><pre>brew install octave</pre>
  
[http://www.finkproject.org/ The Fink project] is an effort to port and package open-source Unix programs to Mac OS X. Fink uses [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dpkg dpkg] and [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Advanced_Packaging_Tool APT] ([http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Debian Debian's] package management system), as well as its own frontend program, fink (which is implemented as a set of [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perl_module Perl modules]).
+
{{Note|The entire installation process can '''take up to a few hours'''. Octave has many dependencies which will be downloaded and installed prior to Octave. Precompiled binary packages called 'bottles' are available with default options for Octave and many of its dependencies, which speed up the installation.}}
  
====Simple Installation Instructions====
+
==== Further reading ====
  
*Install Xcode via the Mac App Store.
+
The default charting package in Octave is straight qt. However, on the Mac gnuplot often works better. To switch to gnuplot, place the following text in your {{Path|~/.octaverc}} file:
** Once installed, install the Command Line Tools from Xcode's Apple Menu > Preferences > Downloads on 10.7 or 10.8, and use {{Codeline|<nowiki>sudo xcode-select --install</nowiki>}} on 10.9 or 10.10 .
+
<pre>setenv('GNUTERM','qt')
*Follow [http://www.finkproject.org/download/srcdist.php Fink's installation instructions]. For OS X 10.8-10.10, enabling the binary distribution during the initial setup will save you a lot of build time.  For those who prefer it, there is a GUI available for Fink, [http://finkcommander.sourceforge.net Fink Commander].
+
graphics_toolkit("gnuplot")</pre>
*Fink has excellent support for Octave and includes recent as well as dated versions. A list of what Fink has available for Octave is [http://pdb.finkproject.org/pdb/browse.php?summary=octave here]. To install the latest Octave with GUI support, type {{Codeline|<nowiki>fink install octave-qtmac</nowiki>}} or {{Codeline|<nowiki>fink install octave-qtx11</nowiki>}} at the Terminal's command line.  For those running the 64 bit version of Fink, it is recommended that {{Codeline|octave-atlas-qtmac}} or {{Codeline|octave-atlas-qtx11}} be installed instead as there are some bugs/features with Apple's vecLib for the X86_64 architecture.  Octave has many dependencies which will be downloaded and installed prior to Octave. The entire installation process can take many hours.
 
* Fink should also be used to install [[http://octave.sourceforge.net/packages.php packages] for Octave.  For example, the control systems package  may be installed by typing {{Codeline|fink install control-atlas-oct382}} at a terminals command line.
 
  
For the {{Codeline|doc()}} function to be supported by Octave, either the unversioned {{Codeline|octave}}, {{Codeline|octave-atlas}}, or {{Codeline|octave-ref}} package must be installed. Essentially, those features used at run-time which don't have a version somewhere in the file path are included in these packages.
+
Note: If brew complains about:
 +
<pre>
 +
Linking /usr/local/Cellar/ghostscript/9.14...
 +
Error: Could not symlink share/ghostscript/Resource
 +
/usr/local/share/ghostscript is not writable.
 +
</pre>
 +
This is telling you the user permissions for ghostscript are not setup in a way that your user profile can use. You need to change those permissions to your user profile.
 +
The following command will repair the issue:
 +
<pre>
 +
sudo chown -R `whoami` /usr/local/share/ghostscript
 +
brew link --overwrite ghostscript
 +
</pre>
 +
Then run the <code>brew install octave</code> command again.
  
===MacPorts===
+
Note: If brew complains about not having a formula for octave, the following command should fix it:
 +
<pre>brew tap --repair</pre>
  
[http://www.macports.org/ MacPorts], formerly called DarwinPorts, is a package management system that simplifies the installation of software on the Mac OS X and Darwin operating systems. It is a free/open source software project to simplify installation of other free/open source software. Similar in aim and function to Fink and the BSDs' ports collections, DarwinPorts was started in 2002 as part of the OpenDarwin project, with the involvement of a number of Apple Inc. employees including Landon Fuller, Kevin Van Vechten, and Jordan Hubbard.
+
The command below upgrades Octave and its dependencies to the latest Homebrew-supported versions:
 
+
<pre>brew update && brew upgrade octave</pre>
====Simple Installation Instructions====
 
Following instructions are made for MacPorts 2.3.4 on Mac OS X 10.11 (El Capitan) in the first place:
 
 
 
'''MacPorts Installation'''
 
*Install "Xcode" via the Mac App Store and the "Xcode Command Line Tools" as described at [http://guide.macports.org/#installing.xcode MacPorts' installation instructions].
 
*Install the appropriate [https://www.macports.org/install.php MacPorts version] for your OS X version. If you had installed Mac Ports in the past already, update it first by typing {{Codeline|sudo port selfupdate}} and {{Codeline|sudo port upgrade outdated}} in the terminal.
 
 
 
'''Preliminary Port Installations'''
 
*Because of a problem with the "atlas" port - on which Octave depends - it is necessary to build it with the here specified variant prior to the Octave port installation: {{Codeline|sudo port install atlas +gcc5}}. This can last for many hours. Do this overnight. If a prior atlas installation failed, do {{Codeline|sudo port clean atlas}} before reinstallation.
 
*Octave depends on arpack, too. Unfortunately arpack is installed with the ''accelerate'' variant by default. The ''accelerate'' variant uses Apple's Vector Libraries which have some known bugs that can cause Octave to crash if using certain functions in arpack. To avoid this install arpack with the ''atlas'' variant instead of the ''accelerate'' variant {{Codeline|sudo port install arpack -accelerate+atlas}}. You can even do this after you installed Octave. The new variant become active by default.
 
 
 
'''Octave Installation'''
 
*MacPorts has good support for Octave. A list of what MacPorts has available for Octave is [http://www.macports.org/ports.php?by=name&substr=octave here]. To install the most recent version of Octave, type {{Codeline|sudo port install octave}} or if you want the experimental graphic user interface (GUI) {{Codeline|sudo port install octave +qtgui+gui}} at the Terminal's command line. Octave has many dependencies which will be downloaded and installed prior to Octave. The entire installation process can take some time.
 
*Note that {{Codeline|octave-devel}} has been replaced by {{Codeline|octave}}, see [https://trac.macports.org/changeset/114034 MacPorts Revision 114034].
 
*The variant installed may be important to the user's experience.  The available variants for  {{Codeline|octave}} are displayed by typing {{Codeline|port variants octave}}.  In MacPorts 2.3.4 the variants ''atlas'', ''gcc5'' and ''glgui'' are installed by default (marked with '+' sign in {{Codeline|port variants octave}} output). If you need Java support add the new Java variant (+java). A installed Java JRE is mandatory. Go To the Oracle [https://www.java.com/ Java website] for Download. The following command works fine: {{Codeline|sudo port install octave +qtgui+gui+java+metis}}
 
*If Octave crashes when plotting use the Gnuplot graphic toolkit instead of FLTK. Type {{Codeline|graphics_toolkit('gnuplot')}} in Octave before plotting. For using the nicer wxt-terminal of Gnuplot, type {{Codeline|setenv("GNUTERM","wxt")}} in Octave. To make this the standard behavior append both commands in one of Octave's startup files e.g. your {{Codeline|~/.octaverc}}. To close the graphic window of gnuplot use the Octave command {{Codeline|close()}} to get rid of the Gnuplot instance instead of using the close button of the window.
 
 
 
===Homebrew===
 
 
 
Homebrew is a package management system that simplifies the installation of software on Mac OS X. It is a free/open source software project to simplify installation of other free/open source software. It is similar in aim and function to MacPorts and Fink. It was written by Max Howell and has gained popularity in the Ruby on Rails community and earned praise for its extensibility.
 
  
====Simple Installation Instructions====
+
Octave has a built-in GUI (developed using Qt lib) installed by default so that gnuplot and other tools can use it directly. This GUI is always installed when installing Octave using Homebrew.
  
First, install Homebrew:
+
In case of trouble, see the [https://docs.brew.sh/Troubleshooting Homebrew Troubleshooting Guide], which assists in diagnosing problems and craft useful bug reports. Bugs may be reported at [https://github.com/Homebrew/homebrew-core/issues Homebrew-core's issue tracker].
*Install Xcode via the Mac App Store.
 
** For Mac OS 10.9 (Mavericks) install the command line tools by {{Codeline|xcode-select --install}}.
 
** For earlier versions of Mac OS, install the command line tools from Xcode's Apple Menu > Preferences > Downloads.
 
*Follow [https://github.com/mxcl/homebrew/wiki/installation Homebrew's installation instructions].
 
* If running Mountain Lion (Mac OS 10.8) or later, install [https://xquartz.macosforge.org/landing/ XQuartz].
 
* Import the scientific computing packages, including Octave:
 
<pre>brew tap homebrew/science</pre>
 
  
To install Octave, update to the latest package definitions, install {{Codeline|gfortran}} (Now you don't need to install it manually, it would be installed by dependency), and then Octave:
+
=== MacPorts ===
<pre>brew update && brew upgrade
+
→ ''Latest Octave: [https://github.com/macports/macports-ports/blob/master/math/octave/Portfile Version 5.2.0]''
brew install octave</pre>
 
This would install octave with the default dependencies. Note that the default dependencies include java runtime environment. If you do not have java installed, homebrew would guide you to do that. Or you can type {{Codeline|brew install octave --without-java}} to remove its dependency on java.
 
  
Note: If brew complains about not having a formula for octave, the following command should fix it:
+
[http://www.macports.org/ MacPorts], formerly called DarwinPorts, was started in 2002 as part of the OpenDarwin project, with the involvement of a number of Apple Inc. employees including Landon Fuller, Kevin Van Vechten, and Jordan Hubbard.
<pre>brew tap --repair</pre>
 
  
The command below upgrades Octave and its dependencies to the latest Homebrew-supported versions:
+
'''Install GNU Octave using MacPorts:'''
<pre>brew update && brew upgrade</pre>
 
  
Octave has many dependencies which will be downloaded and installed prior to Octave. The entire installation process can take a few hours, but precompiled binary packages called 'bottles' are available with default options for Octave and many of its dependencies.
+
# Install [https://developer.apple.com/xcode/ Xcode] via the '''Mac App Store'''.
 +
#* Install the '''Command Line Tools''' by [https://support.apple.com/guide/terminal/open-or-quit-terminal-apd5265185d-f365-44cb-8b09-71a064a42125/mac opening a terminal] and type <pre>sudo xcode-select --install</pre>
 +
# Follow [https://www.macports.org/install.php MacPorts' installation instructions].
 +
# Update your installation <pre>sudo port selfupdate&#10;sudo port upgrade outdated</pre>
 +
# Install Octave <pre>sudo port install octave</pre>
  
Octave has an experimental built-in GUI (developed using Qt lib) installed by default so that gnuplot and other tools could use it directly. Gnuplot will build with Qt support if Octave's Qt-based GUI is enabled. You do not need to install an X server in most situations. Note: On Snow Leopard, Octave requires an X server. If you install without, Homebrew will guide you to the XQuartz project (https://xquartz.macosforge.org) where you can download this.
+
===Spack===
 +
→ ''Latest Octave: [https://github.com/spack/spack/blob/develop/var/spack/repos/builtin/packages/octave/package.py Version 5.2.0]''
  
You might find that you need to add:
+
[https://spack.io/ Spack] is a package management tool that supports the installation of multiple versions of software on macOS and other operating systems. It was created 2013 by Todd Gamblin and is currently being updated and developed by a large list of contributors (mainly via [https://github.com/spack/spack GitHub]).
  
<pre>setenv ("GNUTERM", "X11")</pre>
+
'''Install GNU Octave using Spack:'''
  
to your octaverc file, normally located at {{Codeline|/usr/local/share/octave/site/m/startup}}. See also {{Codeline|brew info octave}} for recommended settings.
+
# Install [https://developer.apple.com/xcode/ Xcode] via the '''Mac App Store'''.
 +
#* Install the '''Command Line Tools''' by [https://support.apple.com/guide/terminal/open-or-quit-terminal-apd5265185d-f365-44cb-8b09-71a064a42125/mac opening a terminal] and type <pre>sudo xcode-select --install</pre>
 +
# Follow [https://spack-tutorial.readthedocs.io/en/latest/ Spack tutorial].
 +
# Update Spack by going to the local Spack repository (develop branch) folder and run <pre>git pull</pre>
 +
# Install Octave <pre>spack install octave</pre>
 +
# To use Octave we need to first load the package <pre>spack load octave</pre>
  
In case of trouble, see the [https://github.com/mxcl/homebrew/wiki/troubleshooting Homebrew Troubleshooting Guide], which assists in diagnosing problems and craft useful bug reports.  The [http://jatinganhotra.com/blog/2014/01/21/installing-octave-on-os-x-10-dot-9-mavericks/ post by Jatin Ganhotra] may also be helpful. Bugs may be reported at [https://github.com/Homebrew/homebrew-science/issues?state=open Homebrew-science's issue tracker].
+
{{Note|The entire installation process can '''take up to a few hours'''. Octave has many dependencies which will be downloaded and installed prior to Octave.}}
  
====Using Aquaterm with Gnuplot====
+
In case of trouble, please visit the [https://github.com/spack/spack/issues Spack repo issues list], and browse through Octave related issues by writing <code>is:issue octave</code> in the filters box.
When using {{Codeline|gnuplot}} as the graphics toolkit, if the {{Codeline|aqua}} terminal is not supported by {{Codeline|gnuplot}}, follow the steps below to resolve the problem.
 
  
*Uninstall {{Codeline|gnuplot}}
+
== Create a launcher app with AppleScript ==
<pre>brew uninstall gnuplot</pre>
 
*Install [http://aquaterm.sourceforge.net Aquaterm]
 
*Install {{Codeline|gnuplot}}
 
<pre>brew install gnuplot --with-aquaterm --with-qt4</pre>
 
  
==Create a launcher app with AppleScript==
+
Open the "AppleScript Editor" application and write the following text in the editor window:
 
 
* Open the "AppleScript Editor" application
 
* write the following text in the editor window:
 
  
 
  tell application "Terminal"
 
  tell application "Terminal"
Line 150: Line 106:
 
  end tell
 
  end tell
  
or if Octave is in your default path:
+
(e.g. Homebrew installs Octave to {{Path|/usr/local/bin/octave}} by default) or if Octave is in your default path:
  
 
  tell application "Terminal"
 
  tell application "Terminal"
Line 160: Line 116:
 
  do shell script "/path/to/octave --force-gui"
 
  do shell script "/path/to/octave --force-gui"
  
(e.g. Homebrew installs Octave to '/usr/local/bin/octave' by default)
+
Then:
 
 
 
* Select "Save as ..." from the "File" menu
 
* Select "Save as ..." from the "File" menu
 
* In the menu that appears, select "Application" from the "File format" menu, then navigate to the "Applications" folder and save your script there as "Octave.app"
 
* In the menu that appears, select "Application" from the "File format" menu, then navigate to the "Applications" folder and save your script there as "Octave.app"
  
To change the application icon  
+
To change the application icon:
 
+
* Open [[:File:Icon.png|this link]] in a web browser, right-click and select "copy image".
* Open [http://wiki.octave.org/File:Icon.png this link] in a web browser, right-click and select "copy image".
+
* Select "Octave.app" in the Finder, then press {{Key|command-i}} to bring up the file info dialog.
* Select "Octave.app" in the Finder, then press command-i to bring up the file info dialog.
+
* In the file info dialog, select the icon (in the top left) and press {{Key|command-v}} to paste the Octave icon over it.
* In the file info dialog, select the icon (in the top left) and press command-v to paste the Octave icon over it.
 
  
==Installing a Mac OS X Bundle==
+
== See also ==
  
Good progress has been made on creating a reliable App bundle for Octave on Mac OS X. Approaches using [http://www.macports.org MacPorts] and [http://brew.sh Homebrew]  have been developed. Information on a Macports approach is available [[Create_a_MacOS_X_App_Bundle_Using_MacPorts|here]], and information is also averrable for the [[Create_a_MacOS_X_App_Bundle_Using_Homebrew|Homebrew approach]]. As the Homebrew approach provides a simpler solution, the Macports approach has been abandoned.
+
* [[Octave for macOS (outdated)]] contains old installation instructions.
  
A App bundle for Octave on Mac OS X is not presently available, but should become available soon. For those eager to install the [[Create_a_MacOS_X_App_Bundle_Using_Homebrew|Homebrew App bundle]], creating the App bundle is largely automated and can be accomplished with minimal technical expertise.
+
== Footnotes ==
  
{{Warning|Octave-Forge does have [https://sourceforge.net/projects/octave/files/Octave%20MacOSX%20Binary/ App bundles] for old Octave, versions and have problems running on Mac OS 10.6 and above.  The latest App bundle does not provide full support for the printing, or the documentation features of Octave. Other features may be missing as well. For individuals who'd like to use it anyway please carefully follow the instructions for [[Installing Mac OS X Bundle]].}}
+
<references/>
  
 
[[Category:Installation]]
 
[[Category:Installation]]
 
[[Category:Macintosh platform]]
 
[[Category:Macintosh platform]]

Latest revision as of 01:18, 20 May 2020

GNU Octave is primarily developed on GNU/Linux and other POSIX conformant systems. On macOS systems GNU Octave can be installed

  • from a single dmg-file, a macOS App Bundle called "Octave.app" in recent versions, or
  • by using a macOS package manager.
Info icon.svg
GNU Octave 5.2.0 is the current stable release.

macOS App Bundles[edit]

The Octave.app project (GitHub page) provides an unofficial ready-to-use macOS App Bundle installer based on Homebrew (see below).

An older installer is hosted on SourceForge.

Package Managers[edit]

A package manager is a software tool to automate the process of installing, upgrading, configuring, and removing software packages for a computer's operating system in a consistent manner. It typically maintains a database of software dependencies and version information to prevent software mismatches and missing prerequisites.

Packages are distributions of software, applications and data. Packages also contain metadata, such as the software's name, description of its purpose, version number, vendor, checksums, and a list of dependencies necessary for the software to run properly. Upon installation, metadata is stored in a local package database.

All package managers below are given in alphabetical order. The Octave developers do not recommend a certain package manager.

Homebrew[edit]

Latest Octave: Version 5.2.0

Homebrew was written 2009 by Max Howell and has gained popularity in the Ruby on Rails community and earned praise for its extensibility.

Install GNU Octave using Homebrew:

  1. Install Xcode via the Mac App Store.
  2. Follow Homebrew's installation instructions.
  3. Ensure brew itself has the latest definitions
    brew update
  4. Install Octave [1]
    brew install octave
Info icon.svg
The entire installation process can take up to a few hours. Octave has many dependencies which will be downloaded and installed prior to Octave. Precompiled binary packages called 'bottles' are available with default options for Octave and many of its dependencies, which speed up the installation.

Further reading[edit]

The default charting package in Octave is straight qt. However, on the Mac gnuplot often works better. To switch to gnuplot, place the following text in your ~/.octaverc file:

setenv('GNUTERM','qt')
graphics_toolkit("gnuplot")

Note: If brew complains about:

Linking /usr/local/Cellar/ghostscript/9.14...
Error: Could not symlink share/ghostscript/Resource
/usr/local/share/ghostscript is not writable.

This is telling you the user permissions for ghostscript are not setup in a way that your user profile can use. You need to change those permissions to your user profile. The following command will repair the issue:

sudo chown -R `whoami` /usr/local/share/ghostscript
brew link --overwrite ghostscript

Then run the brew install octave command again.

Note: If brew complains about not having a formula for octave, the following command should fix it:

brew tap --repair

The command below upgrades Octave and its dependencies to the latest Homebrew-supported versions:

brew update && brew upgrade octave

Octave has a built-in GUI (developed using Qt lib) installed by default so that gnuplot and other tools can use it directly. This GUI is always installed when installing Octave using Homebrew.

In case of trouble, see the Homebrew Troubleshooting Guide, which assists in diagnosing problems and craft useful bug reports. Bugs may be reported at Homebrew-core's issue tracker.

MacPorts[edit]

Latest Octave: Version 5.2.0

MacPorts, formerly called DarwinPorts, was started in 2002 as part of the OpenDarwin project, with the involvement of a number of Apple Inc. employees including Landon Fuller, Kevin Van Vechten, and Jordan Hubbard.

Install GNU Octave using MacPorts:

  1. Install Xcode via the Mac App Store.
  2. Follow MacPorts' installation instructions.
  3. Update your installation
    sudo port selfupdate
    sudo port upgrade outdated
  4. Install Octave
    sudo port install octave

Spack[edit]

Latest Octave: Version 5.2.0

Spack is a package management tool that supports the installation of multiple versions of software on macOS and other operating systems. It was created 2013 by Todd Gamblin and is currently being updated and developed by a large list of contributors (mainly via GitHub).

Install GNU Octave using Spack:

  1. Install Xcode via the Mac App Store.
  2. Follow Spack tutorial.
  3. Update Spack by going to the local Spack repository (develop branch) folder and run
    git pull
  4. Install Octave
    spack install octave
  5. To use Octave we need to first load the package
    spack load octave
Info icon.svg
The entire installation process can take up to a few hours. Octave has many dependencies which will be downloaded and installed prior to Octave.

In case of trouble, please visit the Spack repo issues list, and browse through Octave related issues by writing is:issue octave in the filters box.

Create a launcher app with AppleScript[edit]

Open the "AppleScript Editor" application and write the following text in the editor window:

tell application "Terminal"
 do script "/path/to/octave; exit"
end tell

(e.g. Homebrew installs Octave to /usr/local/bin/octave by default) or if Octave is in your default path:

tell application "Terminal"
 do script "`which octave`; exit"
end tell

or if you wish to start the GUI by default, without a terminal:

do shell script "/path/to/octave --force-gui"

Then:

  • Select "Save as ..." from the "File" menu
  • In the menu that appears, select "Application" from the "File format" menu, then navigate to the "Applications" folder and save your script there as "Octave.app"

To change the application icon:

  • Open this link in a web browser, right-click and select "copy image".
  • Select "Octave.app" in the Finder, then press command-i to bring up the file info dialog.
  • In the file info dialog, select the icon (in the top left) and press command-v to paste the Octave icon over it.

See also[edit]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. Homebrew has updated some of its scripts. To install Octave as of May 14, 2020, provide the migrated full path by running brew install homebrew/core/octave instead. [Citation needed!]