Chainsaw on a Tire Swing

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Don’t need all of Xcode? Finally it’s easy to just install GCC & related tools

I’m not a programmer, but I am a UNIX nerd, & that means I sometimes need to use GCC to compile software. Specifically, I use Homebrew (which, in my experience, is the best & easiest way to install the UNIX CLI software that doesn’t just come with Mac OS X—like gsed, for instance, which I needed the other day), & that needs GCC to compile everything.

The problem is, though, that in order to get GCC, I also have to download Xcode through the App Store. That’s a 1.5 GB download, which is never fun, & the upgrade path over the past few versions has been a bit rocky, to say the least. And the biggest problem is that I just don’t need all the stuff that comes with Xcode. All I need is GCC and related software like make.

Today I found some good—no, great—news:

Several months ago, I got fed up with having to download Xcode to build my software. I took the Xcode installer, ripped out all of the parts I didn’t need, and made a nice installer for GCC. It ended up being ~200MB in size. It took 2 minutes to download.

OSX-GCC-Installer was born. …

Today, Apple added a beautiful new package to their official developer tools suite: Command Line Tools for Xcode. It’s a 171 MB download that includes all of the tools a Homebrew should ever need. Best of all, it contains the proprietary headers that I couldn’t ship myself. …

This is an incredible day for the Homebrew community. You can now setup a complete OS X develop environment with a single 171.7 MB package download. It’s official. It’s legal. It’ll be maintained.

Homebrew is going to officially support the package too.

This is totally friggin’ awesome.

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