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Screenshot of the port command running in Terminal
Initial release 2002; 13 years ago (2002)
Stable release 2.3.3 / 20 November 2014; 8 months ago (2014-11-20)
Development status Active
Written in Tcl and C
Operating system Mac OS X, Darwin
Type Package management system
License BSD

MacPorts, formerly called DarwinPorts,[1] 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.

It allows the installation of a number of packages by entering the command sudo port install packagename in the Terminal, which will then download, if necessary[2] compile and install the requested software, while also installing any required dependencies automatically. Installed packages can be updated with the command sudo port upgrade installed.[3]

On April 28, 2005, the project released version 1.0 of their software.[4] In December 2005, the project reached a milestone, passing 3000 ports.[5] In August 2010, MacPorts version 1.9.1 surpassed 7000 ports. As of March 2013, MacPorts version 2.1.3 has over 16,500 ports.[6]

MacPorts is currently hosted on Mac OS Forge, an open source hosting service created and maintained by Apple Inc. for third-party projects not supported by Apple.[7] Best-effort support can be sourced from the community, as for any open source project.[8]

MacPorts supports universal binaries for both PowerPC and Intel-based versions of Mac OS X, but migrating from a PowerPC installation of MacPorts to a version on an Intel Mac requires reinstalling all installed ports.[9]

The official MacPorts GUI application is called Pallet and began as a Google Summer of Code project in 2009.[10] Another MacPorts GUI application is Porticus which, as of late 2011, does not support Mac OS X Lion or MacPorts versions 2.0 and later.[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "DarwinPorts project announces New Hosting and New Name". (archived). August 7, 2006. Retrieved 2007-03-05. 
  2. ^ Since version 2.0.0, MacPorts has the ability to provide prebuilt archives, see [MacPorts-announce] MacPorts 2.0.0 has been released.
  3. ^ "MacPorts". January 5, 2011. Retrieved 2010-10-15. 
  4. ^ Markus Weissmann (April 28, 2005). "DarwinPorts v1.0". (archived). Archived from the original on 2006-06-29. Retrieved 2007-03-05. 
  5. ^ "3000 ports landmark". (archived). December 17, 2005. Archived from the original on 2006-06-29. Retrieved 2007-03-05. 
  6. ^ "The MacPorts Project -- Home". Retrieved 2012-03-23. 
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^ "Migrating a MacPorts install to a new major OS version or CPU architecture". MacPorts. Retrieved 2013-05-27. 
  10. ^
  11. ^

External links[edit]