Installing HEP packages on Mac OS

A couple of months ago, I created a Mac OS X package manager for High Energy Physics programs. It’s called Homebrew-hep and is just an extension of the excellent Homebrew package manager. The homepage is

This should make it easier to install packages which usually come with documentation pages dedicated to ‘Mac Installation issues’. A couple of great things about the package manager are:

  • it will keep track of dependencies on other packages, e.g. if you install Herwig++ it will install HepMC and ThePEG too!
  • it also keeps things in /usr/local/ so you often don’t need to worry about setting environment variables.
  • it can tell you if you need to update to the latest versions.

I wanted to wait until after a bit of testing before announcing it, but everything seems to work well. I invite you to use it and let me know your experiences. Also, let me know if there are any packages you’d like included, and I’ll try my best.

Here are the packages currently supported:

  • aMC@NLO
  • FastJet
  • HepMC
  • Herwig++
  • MadGraph
  • MCFM
  • Pythia 8
  • Rivet
  • Sherpa
  • YODA

7 thoughts on “Installing HEP packages on Mac OS

  1. Jack

    Awesome job! I had just started down the rabbit hole of compiling and setting up Pythia8 and HepMC for use with ROOT and stumbled upon this. Thanks!

  2. namrata

    Hi i am interested in configuring pythia with root and fastjet on my mac , u am unable to find the configure script in the package installed from home-brew ! can anyone please help !

    1. davidchall1 Post author

      The pythia8 formula does not currently support root/fastjet dependencies. Your options are:
      – install interactively (`brew install -i pythia8`), which allows you to run `configure` and `make` manually
      – edit the formula to support these configure options (`brew edit pythia8`)
      – open an issue on GitHub requesting this feature

  3. Joey Huston

    I’m trying to install mcfm (8.2) from homebrew-hep and it compiles until it looks for the omp.h file. Usually this is created, I think, during the configuration when omp is selected. Is there an easy way of getting around this with the home-brew installation?


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