New macOS Development Setup

1 minute read

The following is a personal guide on what I setup for my development machine.

When setting up a new installation of macOS remember to pick a username that makes sense such as fvelazquez and avoid a pseudonym like kikin81. This will be helpful when ssh into it.

The first thing to consider is to create a backup of your hidden files/folders that you want to keep such as .zshrc for zsh and .ssh for ssh keys.


Homebrew is a must have for development. With it we can install python, ruby, git and other development essentials.


Homebrew requires Command Line Tools which you can get by executing the following command in terminal

$ xcode-select --install

Alternatively you can download the latest Xcode version from the App Store.


The following command will download and install homebrew

$ /bin/bash -c "$(curl -fsSL"

After homebrew is finished setup I then install the following software

  • git (note: macOS already comes with git. Homebrew git will provide the latests version)
  • python (note: macOS comes with Python but installing libraries would require using sudo. Installing via homebrew will get the latest version as well as let you install dependencies on home directory, not sudo required.)
  • rbenv (note: macOS comes with ruby out of the box as well, but we will get the latest from homebrew.)
  • nvm: lets you manage node environments
$ brew install git python rbenv nvm


Next I replace the bundled bash shell with zsh using oh-my-zsh

$ sh -c "$(curl -fsSL"

zsh plug-ins

Zsh with auto complete

Recommended zsh plug-ins are zsh-syntax-highlighting and zsh-autosuggestions

First install via brew:

$ brew install zsh-syntax-highlighting
$ brew install zsh-autosuggestions

Edit .zshrc file:

source $ZSH/
source /usr/local/share/zsh-autosuggestions/zsh-autosuggestions.zsh
source /usr/local/share/zsh-syntax-highlighting/zsh-syntax-highlighting.zsh

Android development

Download the latest stable version of Android studio via the releases page. Alternatively you can install it via homebrew cask

$ brew install --cask android-studio

Add the sdk tools (adb) to your path:

# ~/.zshrc

export ANDROID_HOME="PATH_TO_STUDIO_/Library/Android/sdk/"
export PATH="/usr/local/bin:$PATH:$ANDROID_HOME:$ANDROID_HOME/platform-tools"

Install vysor for projecting a device to macOS

$ brew install --cask vysor

Miscellaneous applications

Finally, this is a list of my most used macOS applications which can be found in the App Store.