As part of working with open source software on OS X, it’s often convenient to use a package manager to install open source packages. Good package managers are useful because they handle downloading the open source software you want, make sure that any related software dependencies get handled, and make it easy to keep the software you installed up to date.
The ones that I’ve worked with in the past have been the following:
pkgsrc has the following strengths:
- Easy to install
- Works on multiple Unix-based platforms
- Installs its software all within one dedicated location (/usr/pkg)
- Does not require the creation of dedicated local user accounts
- Installs software with root privileges
That last point was important to me because Homebrew doesn’t do that. Instead, Homebrew installs software with the ownership set to be the user who ran the installation command.
That characteristic of Homebrew has always made me crazy, but I freely admit that’s my own personal peeve. As with many things, I’m not going to tell folks what package manager to use if their choice is working well for them.
To aid with the installation of pkgsrc on OS X, I’ve written a script. For more details, see below the jump.
My shop recently made the change from using Juniper Network‘s Network Connect VPN client to using Juniper’s Junos Pulse VPN client. As part of the changeover, I wanted to provide an installer for our folks to use which would install both the Junos Pulse software and the configuration needed to connect to our VPN.
Fortunately, Juniper made the process of creating and importing the necessary configuration fairly straightforward. My VPN admin provided me with a copy of the needed .jnprpreconfig config file from our VPN server and I could use Pulse’s jamCommand application to import it. Once I had both the .jnprpreconfig config file and a copy of the Junos Pulse installer, I was able to create an installer using this method that handled both the installation and the automated configuration of the Junos Pulse VPN client. For more details, see below the jump.
Following the release of Security Update 2015-002, it became apparent that the usually-hidden /mach_kernel file was now visible via the Finder. The mach_kernel file file is important to OS X and is stored on the root level of the hard drive on most versions of OS X (OS X 10.10.x has moved the mach_kernel file out of the root level of the Mac’s boot drive.)
As part of a post describing the problem, Tim Sutton has written a script to identify and fix the issue by using the ls command to check for the hidden attribute and then using the chflags command to re-hide the /mach_kernel file as needed. I’ve adapted Tim’s script for use in my own shop to have Casper find and fix this issue. For more details, see below the jump.
With the release of Sophos Enterprise Anti-Virus 9.2.x, Sophos changed how their enterprise antivirus solution for Macs was installed. While previous versions of Sophos Enterprise used an Apple installer metapackage, Sophos has now switched to using an application to install their enterprise antivirus software.
This switch was a problem for Mac admins who wanted to deploy Sophos Enterprise Anti-Virus 9.2.x, as the previously-available installer package had simplified the task of deployment. The new Sophos Enterprise Anti-Virus 9.2.x install application added further complexity by storing many of the installer’s files and other components outside the application in a separate Sophos Installer Components directory.
However, after doing some research and testing, it looks like it is possible to repackage Sophos Enterprise 9.2.x for deployment. For more details, see below the jump.
A number of Mac admins need to provide the Xcode Command Line Tools for the Macs in their environments, either as part of building machines or afterwards. To help with this task, I’ve developed a script that will download and install the Xcode Command Line Tools on Macs running 10.7.x and higher. See below the jump for more details.
With the release of Sophos Anti-Virus 9.x, Sophos changed how their antivirus solution for Macs was installed. Where previous versions of Sophos used an installer package, Sophos has now switched to using an application to install their antivirus.
This switch was a problem for Mac admins who wanted to deploy Sophos Home Edition 9.x for personal use, as there was not an available installer package to simplify the task of deployment. Sophos Home Edition 9.2.x added additional complexity by storing many of the installer’s files and other components outside the installer in a separate Sophos Installer Components directory.
However, after doing some research and testing, it looks like it is possible to repackage Sophos Home Edition 9.2.x for personal deployment. For more details, see below the jump.
One of the pop-up windows you get on first login to Yosemite is the Diagnostics & Usage pop-up window. This window requests permission for the following:
- Send diagnostics and usage data to Apple
- Share crash data with non-Apple developers
I’ve been suppressing this window without setting those diagnostic reporting settings, but Mac admins may also want to apply those settings as part of building their machines. Thanks to investigative work by Tim Sutton, it looks like it’s possible to control those settings by setting the correct values in the /Library/Application Support/CrashReporter/DiagnosticMessagesHistory.plist file.
<key>AutoSubmitVersion</key> <integer>4</integer> <key>AutoSubmit</key> <false/> <key>ThirdPartyDataSubmitVersion</key> <integer>4</integer> <key>ThirdPartyDataSubmit</key> <false/>
For more details, see below the jump.