Compile and install GPAC/MP4Box on Mac [Updated 2017]

Compile and install GPAC/MP4Box on Mac [Updated 2017]

This is a small step-by-step guide on how to download, compile and install GPAC and especially MP4Box on a Mac environment. I suppose most of it could be done with Linux in a very similar manner. There is an official guide for this, and it helped me quite a lot, but it was missing some (for me) crucial steps. That’s why I’m summarizing my steps I did to install GPAC.

#1 Clone GitHub

You can find the GPAC repository here:

Create a new folder locally and then clone the repo normally:

git clone

#2 Installing GPAC extra libs

Now it starts to get very interesting. You need some additional libraries so that GPAC works properly. To get them they use MacPorts in the official guide for this. If you haven’t installed MacPorts yet (as me) then you need to follow the steps on the MacPorts page here. I can only recommend using the package installer because that’s way easier than the other way (with Xcode etc.). But your choice.

If you have already installed MacPorts

If you have updated your operating system since you’ve last used MacPorts, then it is very likely that you have to update MacPorts again. You will get messages like:

Error: Current platform "darwin 15" does not match expected platform "darwin 14"
Error: If you upgraded your OS, please follow the migration instructions:
OS platform mismatch
    while executing
"mportinit ui_options global_options global_variations"
Error: /opt/local/bin/port: Failed to initialize MacPorts, OS platform mismatch

Just go to the install page and get your appropriate “macOS Package (.pkg) Installer” from there. Then install it and continue with the following steps,

When you successfully installed MacPorts you then update MacPorts itself with:

sudo port -v selfupdate

After that, you can install all the libraries needed for GPAC via MacPorts:

sudo port install pkgconfig freetype libpng jpeg spidermonkey185 libsdl ffmpeg faad2 libmad xvid libogg libvorbis libtheora a52dec openjpeg

If you get the warnings about not having installed the Xcode Command Line Tools:

Warning: The Xcode Command Line Tools don't appear to be installed; most ports will likely fail to build.
Warning: Install them by running `xcode-select --install'.

Then just do as told and run

xcode-select --install

Error: Port libsdl-devel not found

This was an error that occurred while trying to install “libsdl-devel”. This library simply isn’t available anymore. But that’s no problem, as this was the development version anyway. Just use “libsdl” instead.

For my installation, I skipped the steps Setting up UPnP (Optional) and Setting up OpenSVCDecoder (Optional).

#3 Compile/Build the code

To configure the installation use the following command:


Then you can build GPAC with the normal make command:


The build process should work without problems now.

#4 Install GPAC/MP4Box

Now after the build was successful, you have two options to install GPAC. You can create a DMG-file or install it directly with:

sudo make install

Even though I made this and restarted everything MP4Box wasn’t still working and I had to manually copy the files to the system. I used the following commands for that:

cd bin/gcc/
cp libgpac.dylib /usr/local/lib/
cp libgpac.dylib /usr/local/include/
cp MP4Box /usr/local/bin/

After that MP4Box should work properly:

MP4Box -version

Yannick Signer


4 thoughts on “Compile and install GPAC/MP4Box on Mac [Updated 2017]

excuse me,
Error: Port libsdl-devel not found
how can fix it

    Yannick Signer

    Hi, at which step of the instructions did this error occur?


      hi, thank you
      #2 Installing GPAC extra libs
      sudo port install pkgconfig freetype libpng jpeg spidermonkey185 libsdl-devel ffmpeg faad2 libmad xvid libogg libvorbis libtheora a52dec openjpeg
      OSX 10.10.5

      thank you!

        Yannick Signer

        Thanks for the input. I think the problem was that libsdl-devel was the development version. I changed it to libsdl and it worked fine. I updated the post accordingly.

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