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You are here: Home Documentation OMERO v4.2.2 OMERO.server install-omero-4.2-on-mac-os-x-10.5


Instructions on how to do a manual install of the OMERO 4.2 server on Mac OS 10.5.

This walkthrough is a list of the commands used to install OMERO on a clean Mac OS 10.5 Leopard by manually downloading and configuring the required components.

It is not a substitute for the general install page but is here to give a feel for the process. The previous version of this page for OMERO 4.1 is here.


On a completely clean machine the first step is to install Xcode from Apple

Starting with the basics, you need a text editor. I downloaded TextWrangler from If you go to the menu TextWrangler > Install Command Line Tools... this will allow you to use the 'edit' command in the Terminal.

You also need Java (at least 1.5), which comes as standard on OS X 10.5.

PostgreSQL 8.3

Download PostgreSQL from here. Download PostgreSQL 8.3, which is still available. The latest version is PostgreSQL 8.4 BUT this requires editing some trust configuration to allow access!?! Run the postgres installer, choosing the default port of 5432. To add the PostgreSQL to the PATH, you need to edit the profile of the bash shell (Terminal).

Make sure you are in your home directory, then open .profile in a text editor.

$ pwd
$ edit .profile

If the file didn't exist before, this will create the file. Now add the following line and save.

export PATH=$PATH:/Library/PostgreSQL/8.3/bin/

You may need to restart the Terminal for this change to take effect.


Now for ICE. You need Ice-3.3.1. I unzipped the Ice-3.3.1-bin-macosx.tar.gz on my Desktop...

Now I need to move it into the /opt/ directory. I needed to create this as it didn't exist. See if it's there.

$ cd ../../
$ ls -al
drwxr-xr-x   3 will    admin       102 19 Oct 12:13 opt

If it's not in the listed folders create it, then move the Ice folder into opt. You will have to do 'sudo' to have permissions to create and move stuff into this root folder.

$ sudo mkdir /opt
$ cd Users/will/
$ mv Desktop/Ice-3.3.1/ /opt

Now you need to edit the .profile again, to include the various components of Ice. Add these lines to the .profile, editing the location of your Ice directory as appropriate in the first line:

export ICE_HOME=/opt/Ice-3.3.1
export PATH=$PATH:$ICE_HOME/bin


Now, check you have Python (and what version) by typing python:

$ python
Python 2.5.1 (r251:54863, Jun 17 2009, 20:37:34) 
[GCC 4.0.1 (Apple Inc. build 5465)] on darwin
Type "help", "copyright", "credits" or "license" for more information.
>>> ^D

Python Imaging Library, Matplotlib (numpy, mencoder etc)

These Python components are not required for the majority of OMERO server and client functionality, so they can be omitted if you want a simpler install process and installed later as necessary. The Python Imaging Library (PIL) is used for creating Figures for export (e.g. exporting movie) and Matplotlib is used for some charts (server usage figure) on the web client. Matplotlib requires numpy, which will also be needed for the PyTables functionality currently being developed.

I installed PIL using these instructions, downloading from here.

To get matplotlib, go to their web-site and click the download button, which takes you here. I downloaded the matplotlib- and installed from there.

For the movie export to work, you need the mencoder command installed. Follow the instructions for Mac on the movie page. I unzipped the in my Downloads folder, then moved it to usr/local/bin:

sudo mv /Users/will/Downloads/mencoder /usr/local/bin/mencoder


I downloaded the server, moved the folder to Desktop and renamed it omero.

Followed the database configuration steps as described. In this case I used the "default" names suggested on the install page for user: "omero" and database name "omero". However, I chose a different password, using "ome" instead of "omero". This means I have to configure this later.

$ sudo -u postgres createuser -P -D -R -S omero
Enter password for new role: 
Enter it again: 
$ sudo -u postgres createdb -O omero omero
$ sudo -u postgres createlang plpgsql omero
createlang: language "plpgsql" is already installed in database "omero"
$ psql -h localhost -U omero -l
Password for user omero: 
                              List of databases
   Name    |  Owner   | Encoding | Collation | Ctype |   Access privileges   
 omero     | omero    | UTF8     | C         | C     | 
 postgres  | postgres | UTF8     | C         | C     | 
 template0 | postgres | UTF8     | C         | C     | =c/postgres
                                                 : postgres=CTc/postgres
 template1 | postgres | UTF8     | C         | C     | =c/postgres
                                                 : postgres=CTc/postgres
(4 rows)

Made the /OMERO directory (as root), then allow the regular user to write to it.

$ sudo mkdir /OMERO
$ whoami
$ sudo chown -R will /OMERO

Now edit any configurations for connecting to the database. As described above, I used the default "omero" for user name and database name, but chose "ome" as my password. Therefore I need change into the Desktop/omero directory and run the password configuration:

$ cd Desktop/omero
$ bin/omero config set omero.db.pass ome

Then set-up the db as described:

$ bin/omero db script
Please enter omero.db.version [OMERO4.2]: 
Please enter omero.db.patch [0]: 
Please enter password for OMERO root user: 
Please re-enter password for OMERO root user: 
Saving to /Users/will/Desktop/omero/OMERO4.2__0.sql

Then enter the location of the .sql (see last line above) in the next command, to create the database:

psql -h localhost -U omero omero < OMERO4.2__0.sql

Now START the server!

bin/omero admin start

I had a few things not work the first time (hadn't set-up database permissions with bin/omero config set omero.db.pass TopSecret?) so I had to stop the server with bin/omero admin stop , fix the problem and then restart. NB. If you stop the server, sometimes you have to wait a minute before restarting.

At this point, you should be able to download the OMERO clients and log in using the 'root' username and password you specified above at the prompt: "Please enter password for OMERO root user:".


If you want to use the web-client to connect to the server or the web-admin to add new users, read on...

I edited the PYTHONPATH as instructed (by adding this line to .profile)

export PYTHONPATH=$PYTHONPATH:~/Desktop/omero/lib/python/

so my PYTHONPATH is now....


Now I'm going to follow the settings instructions. I am using the current IP of this computer from System Preferences > Sharing > Web sharing (on). If you simply want to use the web client on the server machine itself, you can use localhost:8000. Other settings are mostly optional, particularly if you do not need the web client to be able to send e-mails (share functionality).

$ bin/omero web settings
You just installed OMERO, which means you didn't have settings configured in OMERO.web.
Please enter the domain you want to run OMERO.web on (
Please enter the Email address you want to send from (
Please enter the SMTP server host you want to send from (                           
Optional: please enter the SMTP server port (default 25): 
Optional: Please enter the SMTP server username:
Optional: Password: 
Optional: TSL? (yes/no):
Saving to /Users/will/Desktop/omero/lib/python/omeroweb/

Now start web

$ bin/omero web start

And at this point I was able to go to the localhost on this machine and log in as root user at http://localhost:8000/webadmin/

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