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Building FreeCAD on Mac OS 10.15.x -- Catalina

General notes on how the tooling works:

This setup uses conda for dependency management. Conda is able to pull the deps from a repository called conda-forge and setup an isolated build environment. Not quite as isolated as docker, but it is a good option for Mac and its what the FreeCAD CI system uses.

Once the dependencies are installed into a conda environment, then the build uses the standard cmake configuration process to configure the build and ninja to invoke the actual compilation against whatever host compiler (gcc, clang, etc.) was installed by conda’s cxx-compiler package for that architecture.

All of this, and some sanity checks, are in a unified shell script. See below.

Directions

Install XCode Command line tools

Run xcode-select --install and click through.

Install Conda

Refer to MiniConda Docs.

Run the shell script

Run the ./build_unix_dev_conda.sh and go get coffee. Builds take an hour+ on a 2012 Retina MacBook.

Output binaries will be in the ./build/bin/FreeCAD and ${CONDA_PREFIX}/bin/FreeCAD directories.

You can code/build/test using the cmake configuration folder ./build in the standard way from within the freecad_dev conda environment.