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Building on OS X

This how-to assumes that you have already installed the current X-code development environment on your OS X computer. It further assumes that your have some familiarity with the OS X terminal. OS X is a derivative of Free-BSD, a public domain version of the Unix operating system. As such, OS-X supports all of the usual terminal commands and utilities that are found on any Free-BSD operating system. The terminal shell program is the Bourne Again SHell, bash. It provides the $ prompt and executes line entries, shell scripts, and binary programs directly from the terminal window. You will be working in a terminal window for all of this how-to, so become familiar with using the shell program. I recommend this web page if you need to do a bit of learning.

Shell Programming

Don't be put off by it being written specifically for Linux. Bash on OS-X and bash on Linux are identical.

Open the OS-X terminal. The application is found in the “Finder / Applications / Utilities” folder. You should drag the icon to your launch bar for convenience in future terminal work.

The $HOME folder is the one that contains your Documents, Photos, etc. folders. You will be in that folder immediately after starting the terminal program. Return to the $HOME folder at any time by simply executing “cd” with no other parameters.

Refer to the Bash Shell Programming in Linux as needed..

This how-to will help you create a single architecture (i.e., not “universal”) binaries. They were tested on a MacOS 10.12.6 system.

Creating Build dependencies

Begin by creating these two folders if they do not already exist:

  • Create a folder named dev-src in your $HOME folder.
  • Create a folder named src within dev-src.
$ cd
$ mkdir dev-src
$ cd dev-src
$ mkdir src

Download these files which are located on the W1HKJ web site, Build Dependencies, to the new src folder.

Untar each compressed file, i.e.

$ tar xzf fltk-1.3.4-2.tar.gz

Validate the shell scripts do not have a .txt extension

$ ls config* hamlib-config* fltk-config* makebin*

If they do, remove the .txt extension

$ for script in *txt; do mv ${script} ${script%%.txt}; done

Make these 4 shell scripts executable.

$ chmod a+x config hamlib-config fltk-config makebin

Then move the “makebin” shell script file up one folder to the dev-src folder

$ mv makebin ..
(note the two dots, which means 'parent directory')

Set the environment

$ cd
$ ls .bash_profile  (note the dot)

if not found then

$ touch .bash_profile

use the “nano” editor to edit the new or existing file

$ nano .bash_profile

add these lines if they are not already in that file

export PKG_CONFIG=/usr/local/bin/pkg-config
export PKG_CONFIG_PATH=/usr/local/lib/pkgconfig

Save the file: Ctrl+x, y, Enter.

Close down the terminal and then open a new terminal window. This is necessary as the bash environmnet is most easily read and set when the terminal programs starts. Then

$ env

to make sure the changes to local bash environment were made correctly.

The config file downloaded above is for all but fltk, hamlib and pkg-config, i.e. libpng, libsamplerate, libsndfile, libtool, and portaudio.

Compile and install libraries (you can just copy/paste these commands):

cd ${HOME}/dev-src/src/pkg-config-0.29.1
./configure --with-internal-glib
sudo make install

cd ${HOME}/dev-src/src/fltk-1.3.4-2
sudo make install

cd ${HOME}/dev-src/src/hamlib-3.0
sudo make install

cd ${HOME}/dev-src/src/libpng-1.6.25
sudo make install

cd ${HOME}/dev-src/src/libsamplerate-0.1.9
sudo make install

cd ${HOME}/dev-src/src/libsndfile-1.0.27
sudo make install

cd ${HOME}/dev-src/src/libtool-2.4.6
sudo make install

cd ${HOME}/dev-src/src/portaudio
sudo make install

Getting the source

Download the fldigi source to ${HOME}/dev-src and uncompress it as the other sources were uncompressed.

Either download the tar.gz file from the files directory using a browser and download using it's built-in http file download mechanism (typically Right-click → Save As…).

or download using curl (note the curl command line option is an uppercase “O”, not a zero.

$ cd
$ cd dev-src
$ curl -O
  where x.xx.xx is the current version number

$ tar xzf fldigi-x.xx.xx.tar.gz (uncompress the downloaded archive)


$ cd fldigi-x.xx.xx
$ ../makebin

To create an installation disk image file (dmg)

$ make appbundle

Which will create a two dmg files in the src sub-directory. One of the dmg files will have “no-libs” within the file name. It will be slightly smaller than the other. Either can be used for a system installation of the new application. If you use the “no-libs” installation files then you may have to recompile and install if you subsequently update one of the libraries.


1. Building with Xcode 8.x on OSx version 10.11 that fail to execute and give an error regarding “clock_gettime” even though the build completed normally.

Suggest you try this:

Set the build target with the following:


Execute the configure adding this parameter to the options found in the makebin shell script



./configure "CFLAGS=-w -g \
  -headerpad_max_install_names" \
  -"CXXFLAGS=-w -g -headerpad_max_install_names " \
  -"LDFLAGS=-w -headerpad_max_install_names" \
  --enable-static \

Note: the backslash is a line continuation in bash shell scripts.

Execute “make” and test the binary in src/fldigi

If the new binary is OK you should edit the makebin script to include the –without-clock_gettime parameter.


This how-to was written jointly by W1HKJ, David; AE5ZA, Cliff; and K9DWR, David. Cliff tested the process on his MacOS system that had not previously been used to build fldigi, flrig, etc.

howto/building_on_os_x.txt · Last modified: 2018/03/10 12:17 by