A blog named for the muse of Astronomy containing musings by an astronomer

Scisoft OSX 2008.8.1 released

Posted on August 27, 2008 by Juan

Scisoft OSX Intel 2008.8.1 was released about a week ago. I have been working with Nor Pirzkal for the last few months beta-testing this version and trying to make sure my concerns about the previous version were addressed. Nor’s blog post about the update states

There are a few changes in this version and all packages have been updated to the latest available versions. Starting with this version, Scisoft is installed in /Applications/scisoft (it previously was installed in /scisoft). Make sure that you remove any old /scisoft installation and properly update your startup files to source the Setup.csh or Setup.bash from their new locations.

In the README file you are told

Once the collection is successfully installed csh and tcsh users should invoke the command:

source /Applications/scisoft/all/bin/Setup.csh

to gain access to all the software and configure their environment correctly.

Users of the “bash” shell should instead use:

. /Applications/scisoft/all/bin/Setup.bash

Personally, to avoid problems in tcsh with a script breaking or with modifying my PATH multiple times by repeated execution of the Setup.csh script, I use the following line in my .tcshrc to first check for the existence of the Setup.csh script and SCISOFT environmental variables before executing it.

if (! $?SCISOFT) then
test -r /Applications/scisoft/all/bin/Setup.csh && source /Applications/scisoft/all/bin/Setup.csh

Permission Problems Persist
This version addresses all the issues I noticed with Scisoft OSX 2008.5.1 except for one annoying one, the reassignment of ownership of the enclosing directory on installation. If you installed the old version of Scisoft OSX, it would reassign ownership of the root (/) directory to the second user on the system (in my case, since their is none, it showed the user as “502”). I beta-tested various versions of Scisoft OSX but Nor was not able to stamp out this particular problem. I believe Nor has come to the conclusion after extensive testing that this is a problem with Apple’s software for constructing installer packages. By moving the Scisoft OSX installation to /Applications/scisoft, it is the /Applications directory that gets its ownership changed instead of the root directory, which is less damaging. However, I would strongly suggest checking the ownership of the /Applications directory afterward and if isn’t owned by an administrative user, set it as such using:

sudo chown username:admin /Applications

(where “username” is the primary administrative users username, in most cases, your username) to perform the repair.

A Quick-Fix for any Legacy Scisoft-related scripts
If you had a few scripts that relied on Scisoft OSX being located in /scisoft and you don’t want to edit them all is you can make /scisoft point to /Applications/scisoft. This can be accomplished by first moving the old version of Scisoft OSX before installing 2008.8.1 via the command line:

sudo mv /scisoft /scisoft_old

and then once you have installed the new Scisoft OSX in 2008.8.1, create a symbolic link from the old location to the new by typing (again from the command line)

sudo ln -s /Applications/scisoft /scisoft

This will allow any scripts that refer to items in /scisoft to continue to work for the most part.

What’s New?
An investigation of the /Application/scisoft/i386/Packages directory as well as the NEWS file reveals the following changes to this version of SciSoft OSX over the 2008.5.1 version.

  • DS9 updated from 5.1 to 5.3beta
  • FV updated from 5.1 to 5.2.1
  • ATLAS updated to version 3.8.2
  • MIDAS updated to 08FEBpl1.1
  • cdsclient was updated to version 2.87
  • OpenMotif updated to 2.1.32_compat
  • cfitsio library updaed from 3.090 to 3.090 (the current version is 3.100)
  • pango library updated from version 1.20.2 to 1.21.3
  • pixman library updated from 0.10.0 to 0.11.2
  • expat library updated from 2.0.0 to 2.0.1
  • fontconfig library updated from 2.3.2 to 2.6.0
  • freetype library updated from 2.2.1 to 2.3.6
  • gettext library updated from 0.14.5 to 0.17
  • gtk+ updated from 2.12.9 to 2.12.10
  • libpng library updated from 1.2.10 to 1.2.29
  • netCDF library version 3.6.2 added
  • pkg-config updated from 0.20 to 0.23
  • TclTk package updated from 8.4.13 to 8.4.19
  • wcstools library updated from 3.6.4 to 3.7.3 (current version is 3.7.5)
  • IRAF package rvsao updated t version 2.5.7 to 2.6.4
  • Python was updated to 2.5.2 and the following Python libraries were updated:

Minor Glitches
The only other minor glitch I noticed was that /Applications/scisoft/i386/bin doesn’t appear to have a ds9 binary installed. You can fix this by installing the X11 version of ds9 there or by linking to the Aqua version of ds9 that was installed using the command line

ln -s "/Applications/scisoft/i386/Applications/SAOImage DS9.app/Contents/MacOS/ds9" /Applications/scisoft/i386/bin/ds9

1 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. 23 09 08 14:13

    Urania » Blog Archive » Scisoft OSX Intel 2008.9.1 released

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