Setting Up Astro Research Environment on Mac OS X Leopard

In my new research environment I have an iMac.  My preferred solution is Linux, but I figured that sometimes learning new things is a good thing (though I have to sacrifice my efficiency which I developed over the years using a Debian-based Linux box).

There are nice existing resources, like

so what I leave here is a quickie for myself based on the above sites.

X11

X11 comes with Leopard.  Just drag the X11 icon at /Applications/Utilities/X11 to your dock, so that clicking on it you have an X11 environment in which you can open up a shell terminal (Applications -> Terminal).

Xcode Tools

This one includes all the necessary development applications.  Install these from the Mac OS X installation DVD.  Xcode Tools can be found under the Optional Installs directory.

Fink

As an apt-get afficionado, I like the way I can use the APT-based packaging system on Mac OS X.  Basically you can use the apt-get command the way you do on Debian.  Go to the Fink project web site and download and install the software.  You can browse all the available packages as well.  Nice.

Software for Astrophysics

Use Scisoft for Mac OS X to install a bunch at once.  People are lazy but that’s how innovations arise, I suppose.  The package will be installed at /Applications/scisoft.

IRAF

As of this writing, the version of IRAF is 2.14.  Applying 2.14.1 patch is actually easy by overwriting:

  1. Download IRAF binaries from ftp://iraf.noao.edu/iraf/v214/PCIX/ib.macx.x86.gz to /Applications/scisoft/all/Packages/iraf/irafbin/bin.macintel and just extract the archive with gzip and tar.
  2. Download NOAO binaries from ftp://iraf.noao.edu/iraf/v214/PCIX/nb.macx.x86.gz to /Applications/scisoft/all/Packages/iraf/irafbin/noao.bin.macintel and extract the archive with gzip and tar.
  3. Download the patch from ftp://iraf.noao.edu/iraf/v214/PCIX/patch1.tar.gz to /Applications/scisoft/all/Packages/iraf/iraf and extract the archive with gzip and tar.

It is also recommended to check the versions of external packages.  If outdated, you can simply install them under /Applications/scisoft/all/Packages/iraf/extern.

If you are reusing login.cl file from a Linux installation, make sure to update your home environmental variable:

set home = “/Users/username”

(in Linux, it would be “/home/username” of course.)

IMPORTANT: Also, do not forget to do this:

$ cp /Applications/scisoft/all/Packages/iraf/iraf/dev/imtoolrc ~/.imtoolrc

Otherwise you may see DS9 not behaving well…

DS9

Download from here and install the Leopard X11 version.

Others

TO BE CONTINUED.  Still need to install quite a few packages via apt-get.

sudo apt-get install wget emacs22 gv less

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One Response to Setting Up Astro Research Environment on Mac OS X Leopard

  1. Pingback: Setting Up Astro Research Environment on Mac OS X Leopard « Biboroku | I AM OSX

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