author Sam Lantinga <>
Tue, 16 Oct 2001 14:55:59 +0000
changeset 207 c03846dd489b
parent 199 2ad0957f6265
child 221 50620ec9c86a
permissions -rw-r--r--
Added Darrell Walisser's updated project-builder projects

Using the Simple DirectMedia Layer with Mac OS X

These instructions are for people using Apple's Mac OS X (pronounced

From the developer's point of view, OS X is a sort of hybrid Mac and
Unix system, and you have the option of using either traditional
command line tools or Apple's IDE ProjectBuilder (PB).

To build using the command line, use the standard configure and make

	make install

(You may need to create the subdirs of /usr/local manually.)

To use the library once it's built, you essential have two possibilities:
use the traditional autoconf/automake/make method, or use Apple's Project Builder.

Using the Simple DirectMedia Layer with a traditional Makefile

In the following, it will be mostly assumed that you are using autoconf and
automake to setup your SDL project, and furthermore that you use the AM_PATH_SDL
macro provided by SDL in sdl.m4. If you are not using these tools, you can
still use SDL but it will be somewhat hard to get running.

Only step 1) is really required to get started, but for full OS X support you
will want to do the other steps, too.

1) Update your acinclude.m4 file in case you have copied an older version of
   sdl.m4 into it. This is essential as AM_PATH_SDL now performs some additional
   tasks when used on MacOS X

   Rationale: AM_PATH_SDL copies /usr/local/share/sdl/Info.plist and the folder
   /usr/local/share/sdl/SDL_main.nib/ into the directory where configure is invoked.
   This is essential for the configure script to be able to run the test code
   that detects SDL.

2) Copy SDL's file (from src/main/macosx) into your project's main
   folder (the same spot that your sits), and edit it to suite your
   needs. Then add it to your AC_OUTPUT list in

   Rationale: The Info.plist file can be used to specify an icon file for
   your app, and also to provide a human readable version/copyright string
   and other meta-information to the user via the Finder's Get Info dialog.

3) Add something like the following rule to your

bundle_contents =
	mkdir -p $(bundle_contents)/MacOS
	mkdir -p $(bundle_contents)/Resources
	mkdir -p $(bundle_contents)/Resources/SDL_main.nib
	echo "APPL????" > $(bundle_contents)/PkgInfo
	$(INSTALL_DATA) Info.plist $(bundle_contents)/
	$(INSTALL_DATA) SDL_main.nib/*.nib $(bundle_contents)/Resources/SDLMain.nib
	$(INSTALL_PROGRAM) $< $(bundle_contents)/MacOS/

   You should replace EXE_NAME with the name of the executable. APP_NAME is what
   will be visible to the user in the Finder. Usually it will be the same
   as EXE_NAME but capitalized. E.g. if EXE_NAME is "testgame" then APP_NAME 
   usually is "TestGame". You might also want to use @PACKAGE@ to use the package
   name as specified in your file.

   If your project builds more than one application, you will have to do a bit more.
   For each of your target applications, you need a seperate rule. Furthermore, each
   needs its own Info.plist file, since that has to contain the exact name of the 
   executable (i.e. EXE_NAME above). One way to do that is to use sed in your make rules
   and modify a single master Info.plist.

   Rationale: on Mac OS X, executables have to be put into so-called "bundles".
   The make rule given above will construct such a bundle around the executable
   for you. You need to make a copy of it for each target application.

4) If you want the create bundles to be installed, you may want to add this
   rule to your

install-exec-hook: APP_NAME_bundle
	rm -rf $(DESTDIR)$(prefix)/Applications/
	mkdir -p $(DESTDIR)$(prefix)/Applications/
	cp -r $< /$(DESTDIR)$(prefix)Applications/

   This rule takes the Bundle created by the rule from step 3 and installs them
   into $(DESTDIR)$(prefix)/Applications/.

   Again, if you want to install multiple applications, you will have to augment
   the make rule accordingly.

Using the Simple DirectMedia Layer with Project Builder

These instructions are for using Apple's Project Builder IDE to build SDL applications.

- First steps

The first thing to do is to unpack the PBProjects.tar.gz archive in the
top level SDL directory (where the PBProjects.tar.gz archive resides).
Because Stuffit Expander will unpack the archive into a subdirectory,
you should unpack the archive manually from the command line:
	cd [path_to_SDL_source]
	tar zxf PBProjects.tar.gz
This will create a new folder called PBProjects, which you can browse
normally from the Finder.

- Building the Framework

The SDL Library is packaged as a framework bundle, an organized
relocatable folder heirarchy of executible code, interface headers, 
and additional resources. For practical purposes, you can think of a 
framework as a more user and system-friendly shared library, whose library
file behaves more or less like a standard UNIX shared library.

To build the framework, simply open the framework project and build it. 
By default, the framework bundle "SDL.framework" is installed in 
~/Library/Frameworks. Therefore, the testers and project stationary expect
it to be located there. However, it will function the same in any of the
following locations:


- Build Options
    There are two "Build Styles" (See the "Targets" tab) for SDL.
    "Deployment" should be used if you aren't tweaking the SDL library.
    "Development" should be used to debug SDL apps or the library itself.

- Building the Testers
    Open the SDLTest project and build away!

- Using the Project Stationary
    Copy the stationary to the indicated folders to access it from
    the "New Project" and "Add target" menus. What could be easier?

- Setting up a new project by hand
    Some of you won't want to use the Stationary so I'll give some tips:
    * Create a new "Cocoa Application"
    * Add src/main/macosx/SDLMain.m , .h and .nib to your project
    * Remove "main.c" from your project
    * Remove "MainMenu.nib" from your project
    * Add "$(HOME)/Library/Frameworks/SDL.framework/Headers" to include path
    * Add "$(HOME)/Library/Frameworks" to the frameworks search path
    * Add "-framework SDL -framework Foundation -framework AppKit" to "OTHER_LDFLAGS"
    * Set the "Main Nib File" under "Application Settings" to "SDLMain.nib"
    * Add your files
    * Clean and build

- Building from command line
    Use pbxbuild in the same directory as your .pbproj file
- Running your app
    You can send command line args to your app by either invoking it from
    the command line (in *.app/Contents/MacOS) or by entering them in the
    "Executibles" panel of the target settings.
- Implementation Notes
    Some things that may be of interest about how it all works...
    * Working directory
        As defined in the SDL_main.m file, the working directory of your SDL app
        is by default set to its parent. You may wish to change this to better
        suit your needs.
    * You have a Cocoa App!
        Your SDL app is essentially a Cocoa application. When your app
        starts up and the libraries finish loading, a Cocoa procedure is called,
        which sets up the working directory and calls your main() method.
        You are free to modify your Cocoa app with generally no consequence 
        to SDL. You cannot, however, easily change the SDL window itself.
        Functionality may be added in the future to help this.

Known bugs are listed in the file "BUGS"