So on & so forth

Ville Määttä vmaatta at
Wed Aug 20 15:21:01 CEST 2014

Maybe a little off topic, but then again we are talking about keeping gnupg up to date.

TL;DR: I think either MacPorts or Homebrew can be used and one or the other is quite necessary. I do most of my work on the command line / Vim, etc. and using either is just as convenient as apt-get / yum etc. in Linux.

Current gnupg2 versions as of 20.8.2014:
Homebrew: 2.0.26, also 1.4.18 (gnupg)
MacPorts: 2.0.25, also 1.4.18 (gnupg) and 1.2.8 (gnupg12)
Rudix: none (only 1.4.18)

And the rest is way off topic :).

I first looked into Mac package managers in 2006 when Fink was the incumbent and MacPorts more of a challenger. It’s been called a successor to Fink, has the unofficial support of Apple and became pretty much the de-facto package manager around that time. I went with MacPorts then and was quite happy for a few years. Then came along Homebrew as the challenger and I’ve been using it for a few years now. I’ll probably give MacPorts a try again on the next new system.

They’re both similar and I think either is good. They have differences which might be important case-by-case but nothing worth some of the heated blogs and forums posts there are.

- Neither one replaces any system binaries and both are quite easy to get rid off. And they could co-exists if necessary.
- Homebrew tries to avoid duplicates of things included in not only OS X, but also anything that available from language-specific package managers like 'pip', ‘gem', ‘clan’. Installs via MacPorts easily pull in stuff that could be provided by the system. This can be good or bad either way. I rarely have any trouble finding what I need from Homebrew but then I also do use virtualenv and pip, RVM and gem etc. depending on the project.
- If one is interested in developing / maintaining a port / brew: MacPorts is modeled on BSD Ports and uses SVN. Homebrew formulas are Ruby scripts in Git, usually in Github I suppose.

I didn’t know Fink was still going strong. Good for them. I’ve never used Fink and can’t comment but it is the venerable grey beard project in this bunch. This was the first time I heard about Rudix. I don’t know anything of it and don’t really feel the need to find out :).


On 19 Aug 2014, at 23:54, Doug Barton <dougb at> wrote:

> I notice you suggested (home)brew as the source of the gpg2 package. Can you say a little about the relative value of that project vs. MacPorts, Fink, or Rudix?

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