I am trying to install a few software packages on my Mac os X 10.6.8. The packages are the python libraries:

  • networkx (graph library)
  • matplotlib (visuzlization)

It seems that with matpotlib I also need numpy and scipy. Anyway, what is the easiest way to install packages with a mac? I have used pip, and easy install. They both seem to install everything correctly, but nothing works after I install. It appears during upgrades that the latest version does not override the previous version of the package as it should.

In the past I have used Ubuntu seamlessly, and now my mac has been giving me some trouble with installation. All help is greatly appreciated!

  • For matplotlib see this question, also note that numpy and scupy are part of the Apple installed python - it is not a duplicate as that just asks for certain code and not the more general case
    – mmmmmm
    Commented Mar 8, 2013 at 14:09

1 Answer 1


The reason why Ubuntu works is that it has a package manager for all code, that is python and binaries. pip is a python installer and works in OSX for all pure python packages and simple C packages but seems to have issues with the more complex ones.

The nearest think to Linux's package managers are the package managers that deal with code ported from other Unices e.g. Macports, Homebrew, Fink. With choose one and one only as they can conflict (I use macports) and then use it for all possible ports.

In your case installing matplotlib would automatically install python, numpy, scipy etc

  • Where can I get macports? Commented Mar 8, 2013 at 15:13
  • added links for macports and Homebrew. Fink appears to be down for some time.
    – mmmmmm
    Commented Mar 8, 2013 at 15:21

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