GNU Radio via MacPorts (recommended)¶
As of September 23, 2011, GNU Radio v3.3.0 or newer, currently release version 3.7.1 (and all its dependencies) can be installed directly via MacPorts simply by executing
sudo port install gnuradio +full, thanks to the work of Michael Dickens as a MacPorts developer and GNU Radio user and contributor. With few exceptions, this command should work on Mac OS X 10.5, .6, .7, and .8 once MacPorts "port" command is available. See the MacPorts Install Page for more information on installing and using MacPorts. This method of installing GNU Radio is actively kept up to date by Michael Dickens, and hence is the recommended way to install GNU Radio on Mac OS X.
Other installation methods¶
GNU Radio has been compiled and installed on Mac OS X 10.4 ("Tiger") through 10.8 ("Mountain Lion") running any compatible version of Xcode on all recent Macs -- whether Intel or PPC. Although it might be possible to use GNU Radio under Mac OS X 10.3, getting the background libraries and applications installed would likely be difficult.
There are 2 primary guides for installing GNU Radio on OSX: Jon Jacky and RadioWare@UND. As of the GNU Radio 3.2 release (24 May 2009), the former is somewhat out of date but can still be used as a reference if desired. The latter is up to date for 3.2, provides scripts for most of the work that provide equivalent functionality on either version of OSX. Neither is up to date for 3.3 or newer, and as of 2013 the GNU Radio release is at 3.7.
There are a number of background libraries and applications that must be installed from source or binary in order to compile or execute GNU Radio. These can be obtained by using Fink, MacPorts, and/or from source / scratch. MacPorts tends to be more up-to-date with respect to new releases, which can be both a blessing and a curse. Both Fink and MacPorts offer thousands of ready-to-install libraries and applications, and hence they are highly recommended to use instead of installing from source / scratch.
- OSX 10.8 does not build GNU Radio with the default cmake version 2.8.4. Update cmake to the latest version (2.8.9 is known to work) before building. MacPorts provides the most recent version of cmake, which can be used to build GNU Radio outside MacPorts.
- GNU Radio release 3.2 requires Python 2.5, 2.6, or 2.7; version 2.4 and prior have issues with threading that were resolved in 2.5. Python 2.7 is recommended when available.
- The internal hardware on PPC-Macs was not designed for high throughput USB 2.0, and thus no PPC-Mac has been tested at 32 Mega-Bytes/second (MBps) using a USRP/UHD and the native USB hardware; close to 32 MBps can be achieved using PCCard/PCMCIA- or PCI-based USB 2.0. The internal hardware on Intel-Macs is much better designed to handle USB 2.0, and hence even a 5 year old 20" iMac can achieve 32 MBps.