I am currently using MacPorts on Lion but thinking of switching to Homebrew.

  1. There is a suggestion that installing to /usr/local causes problems and ~/.homebrew would be an alternative. Can I instead use something like /homebrew with the same permissions as /usr/local so other users on my machine can also use the programs?
  2. Will I have to rebuild anything (auctex, scipy) which are built with gcc from MacPorts?
  3. As long as I add the Homebrew path (/usr/local, ~/.homebrew, /hombrew) ahead of /opts/local of MacPorts, can I leave MacPorts installed?

I am aware of the other posts on this exchange forum regarding coexistence of the two package managers, but do not feel they address these questions specifically. Thanks.

1 Answer 1


Re: 1) I can’t say I’ve heard this suggestion before, and I wouldn’t worry about it. For what it’s worth Homebrew doesn’t actually install to /usr/local, it drops symlinks there. Direct from the horse’s mouth:

Homebrew installs packages to their own directory and then symlinks their files into /usr/local.

Re: 2&3) You don’t have to rebuild specific packages, but Homebrew would really rather not be on the same system as MacPorts. Personally I’d just note down what you’ve currently got installed, remove MacPorts and everything to do with it, and reinstall everything using Homebrew. You can theoretically run both at the same time, but it can cause conflicts which are a pain to resolve.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .