PfaEdit on Mac OS/X

Building PfaEdit

Before you do anything you must get a copy of the Mac Developer Tools. You can get this from Apple (you can either download a 250Meg file, or pay them $20 to FedEx you a CD.

Then you must install X11. The GNU Mac OS/X site contains a complete X11 package, probably other sites do too.

Neat. Now Apple is also distributing X11.

It is possible to build PfaEdit without X11. There will be no user interface, but you can run scripts.

Thirdly you may choose to install some image libraries (I recommend at least installing libpng). Currently PfaEdit only tries to link statically with these libraries.

Finally you are ready to build pfaedit. Download the most recent sources from this site. then:

$ gunzip pfaedit_full-*.tgz
$ tar xf pfaedit_full-*.tar
$ cd pfaedit
$ configure
$ make
$ sudo make install

Installing the Mac OS/X binary distribution

Before installing PfaEdit you should ensure that you have X windows up and running. You can get this from apple, or from the GNU Mac OS/X site. (Or you can download the package built without X, which has no user interface but will let you run scripts).

After that you should just be able to unpack the packages provided.

These packages install into /usr/local/bin. You may need to add that to your PATH environment variable, and do something similar for MANPATH:

$ vi ~/.cshrc
setenv PATH /usr/local/bin:$PATH
setenv MANPATH /usr/local/share/man:$MANPATH

If your shell is bash

$ vi ~/.bashrc
PATH=/usr/local/bin:$PATH ; export PATH
MANPATH=/usr/local/share/man:$MANPATH ; export MANPATH

See the dependencies section for external libraries/programs you may want to add to your system to enhance PfaEdit's capabilities.

Running PfaEdit on Mac OS/X

The X server (XDarwin) must be running before PfaEdit can start. XDarwin lives in the Applications folder and may be started by double clicking on it.

You may start PfaEdit either from an xterm or from a Terminal window. If you start it from a Terminal window you must first type:
$ setenv DISPLAY :0

The default window manager (twm) doesn't work well with PfaEdit when X is running in rootless mode.

PfaEdit allows the window manager to position its windows for it, and twm does this by allowing the user to click anywhere on the screen to position the upper left corner of the new window. Unfortunately unless X has a window under the location where you want the upper left corner to be Aqua will put X into the background and steal the click from X.

You can only open a window if you position it so that it's upper left corner is on one of X's already existing windows.

Caveats for Mac OS/X

  1. PfaEdit does not conform to Apple's Human Interface Guidelines

(Hexley the platypus, unofficial Darwin mascot, copyright Jon Hooper)