Mac OS X for Unix Network Programming

Posted on 2006-05-31
Last Modified: 2013-11-17
I'm taking a unix network programming class in grad school and I'm looking to stand up my own Unix box to develop on. Can someone give me a informed evaluation of Mac OS X for this scenario? I will need to be able to create child processes, threading, connect with unix sockets, etc. I'm worried that Mac OS X won't give me the freedom to develop that I would have on other platforms. Obviously, I can use FreeBSD or Linux, but I have considered getting a Mac for some time anyway....and two birds, one stone, etc.


Question by:ChrisClement
    LVL 53

    Expert Comment

    If you get one of the new Intel Macs, you should be able to dual boot between OS X and any of the standard linux releases. If you get one of the older G4 or G5 Macs, you will be restricted to versions of linux that are compiled for the PPC chip.

    Author Comment


    Thanks,  but I'm looking for information (pros, cons) on Unix network programming on Mac OS X.   I can dual boot linux on my existing system.  No need to buy new hardware for that.

    LVL 23

    Accepted Solution

    Mac OS X has full unix network programming capability.  It presents a full BSD sockets interface and POSIX threading environment.   From the user program point of view, Mac OS X looks like just another BSD variant.  The Mac OS X Developer Tools include the full suite of GNU development tools in addition to Apples excellent IDE and other GUI tools built on top of them.

    I use Mac OS X as my primary desktop development environment for developing a suite tools that runs on many flavors of Unix.  It has all the power of Unix, with an excellent user environment and set of productivity apps.


    Author Comment

    Awesome. Thanks Brett.

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