Spyder (python IDE) on OSX Snow Leopard and Lion

After noticing a theme in the spyder dev email list of difficulties getting spyder running on OSX i have decided to post some lessons learned from (semi* — mind the asterisk) successfully installing it on both snow leopard and lion.

Snow Leopard

* A disclaimer: I did not get matplotlib to work on Snow Leopard. I was able to get spyder running though, it just threw some gripy error messages on startup in the Ipython shell.

Its a bit tricky because you can get off on the wrong foot early in the process if you don’t get python working properly. I hodge-podged it on Snow Leopard and it took a while and lots trial and error. Generally I followed the guidelines for installing python on OSX from python. brilliant.

Once you have the latest (non-mac) version of python blinking stupidly at you when you type:
$ python
you should be off on the right track.

I recommend installing PIP for python package management, it has uninstall going for it, which is nice.

At this stage shift over to following the install instructions for spyder. I used the development version.

The main issue now is getting QT and PyQT working. I found that the best approach was to build QT from source tarball, not the OSX binary package.

Then SIP and PyQT from source as well.

Now install the other spyder dependencies using PIP.

$ sudo python setup.py install

in /Users//src/spyderlib

Now, go home (~) and
$ spyder
Should get you off and running.


On Lion I decided I’d try the enthought method and got the full (academic) EPD 7.2.2 package and installed QT, PyQT, and SIP as in Snow Leopard. Mind you, EPD is a whole-kit-and-kaboodle approach: it bundles python and a BUNCH of packages including numpy and scipy. I was a little wary of this but it actually worked out well and was much quicker than the Snow Leopard saga.

Also installed PIP to make sure I had dependencies for spyder.

Then grabbed the spyder development version and installed as above.

Next time I’ve got to do this im going to just go for the EPD version. Up and running quick is the bottom line.

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