Setting up a new Mac? Download and install your favorite apps all at once.makes it easy.
From Dropbox to VLC, there’s a lot of apps you need for your workflow that don’t come with your Mac. Many are in the Mac App Store, meaning they’re quick to install, but a surprising number aren’t.
So you do the installation dance. You download all the DMGs, you mount them, you drag the applications to the Applications folder, you unmount the DMG, then you finally delete the DMG.
If you think this could be simpler, you’re right. Here’s a website that makes it easy for your to install a lot of the best Mac apps, all by running a single script.
Head toand you’ll see a variety of software to choose from.
Most major free programs can be found here. Browsers like Chrome and Firefox, communication apps like Adium and Skype, and a wide variety of tools useful for programmers.
Check off the things you’d like to install, then click the Install These button at the bottom of the list. You’ll be presented with a command to copy:
The command uses curl to download a script, then runs it. You can check what the script does by copying the URL, then pasting it into your browser:
Each section is commented, so you can check it out – and possibly learn a few things. Basically, the software is downloaded and moved to your Applications folder.
Once you’ve assured yourself this is safe (it is), go ahead and paste the command into your Terminal (which you can launch by opening Spotlight, the magnifying glass in the top-right, and typing “Terminal”). Paste the command here, then hit enter:
Once you do you’ll see the script download and do it’s thing. DMG files will be mounted and unmounted, and you can watch every step if you want:
When the command is done, it’s done: you’ve got your software installed. It’s all in your Applications folder and ready to run.
Gatekeeper, which helps keep your Mac safe, will also stop you from running any of the software downloaded by GetMacApps. You’ll need to change your security settings to allow software from outside the Mac App Store to change that: head to System Preferences, click Security & Privacy and then on the General tab check “Allow applications downloaded from: Anywhere” (you will need to click the lock icon and input your administrator password first).
Savvy Windows users know they can use Ninite to easily install all their favorite free apps in one installation. I’ve long wondered why there was no equivalent service for Mac users. I’m glad it turns out there is.
Do you know of any other tools that make setting up a new Mac simpler? Let fellow readers know in the comments below, okay?