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Information for OSX users
If you are a OSX user, there are few tools that you can install on your system
to make your life easier, especially if you plan to use Matlab.
Recent versions of OSX do not ship with gcc any more but instead with a
replacement named clang. In order to install the C compiler and various
command-line utilities that will be necessary to install CUTEst, you have
to options:
1. install Xcode, or
2. install only the command-line tools.
Note that unless you specifically need Xcode for other reasons, or already
have it installed, it is not strictly required to run CUTEst. Only the
command-line tools are required. The only disadvantsage of Xcode is that it
takes up a substantial amount of space of your drive.
In either case, follow the instructions below to install the command-line tools.
How to check that you already have the command-line tools
Open a terminal window and enter the following command
xcode-select --install
If the command-line tools are already installed, you should receive a message
of the form
xcode-select: error: command line tools are already installed,
use "Software Update" to install updates
If the command-line tools are not installed, a window should pop up with
instructions on how to install them. Please follow those instructions.
You will still be able to install Xcode later if you wish.
XCode is available for free from the Mac App Store. If you require an older
version of XCode (e.g., because you are running an older version of OSX),
head to
If you already have Xcode installed
When you install XCode, make sure to also install the command-line
tools. For this, start up Xcode and go to the menu XCode > Preferences. Click
on the Downloads icon, select the Components tab and click on the Install
button located in front of 'Command Line Tools'.
Unfortunately, no Fortran compiler is supplied as part of XCode or the command-
-line tools. We need to install gcc. Enter Homebrew.
Homebrew is the equivalent of a package manager for OSX. We have found it to be
more reliable than other options such as MacPorts. With Homebrew you will be
able to easily install multiple versions of gcc/gfortran and a multitude of
other software.
To install Homebrew, execute the one-liner given at the top of its home
Once Homebrew is installed, we can use it to install a recent version of gcc
and gfortran.
brew install gcc
You may now follow the general installation instructions for CUTEst, or you may
use Homebrew to install it for you. To do so, type the following in the terminal:
brew tap optimizers/cutest
brew install cutest [--with-matlab]
and follow the instructions located at
Matlab's MEX
The procedure below was tested on OSX 10.12.5 (Sierra) with Matlab R2016a.
If it does not work for your version of OSX and/or Matlab, please get in
touch so we can resolve the issue and improve these instructions.
As of R2015b (Matlab 8.5), the Mathworks no longer support gfortran on OSX.
However, the procedure below circumvents this limitation so that even the latest
version of gfortran can used to install CUTEst and use its Matlab interface.
Because Homebrew no longer gives acess to gcc and gfortran 4.3 (the last
versions supported by Matlab R2015a), the instructions below only apply to
later versions of Matlab.
Matlab's MEX file compilation process can be quite contrary. Compiler
settings are stored in XML files located under
(the installation location of Matlab on your machine may be slightly different.)
Surprisingly, those files are not sufficiently up to date to detect recent
versions of Xcode or the command-line tools. We supply XML files to replace
the standard ones. The following command must be run as super-user as it
overwrites one of the XML files that ships with Matlab:
sudo cp doc/matlab-osx/clang_maci64.xml /Applications/MATLAB/R2016a/bin/maci64/mexopts/
Next, run the following command for Matlab to set up compiler settings to build
C MEX files:
/Applications/MATLAB/R2016a/bin/mex -setup C
There should now be a file called clang_maci64 under ~/.matlab/R2016a. Unfortunately,
it was necessary to first overwrite the XML file that ships with Matlab to get here.
You should now be in position to compile C MEX files to interface CUTEst problems.
From the working directory of your choice, run the following command
cutest2matlab_osx PROBLEM.SIF
In the current directory, you should now see, among others, the following files:
libPROBLEM.dylib # a shared library containing the decoded problem
OUTSDIF.d # data file for the decoded problem
AUTOMAT.d # data file for the decoded problem
mcutest.mexmaci64 # the compiled MEX file
Note that we got here without Matlab knowing anything about Fortran. The trick is that
mcutest.mexmaci, which is essentially also a shared library, points to libPROBLEM.dylib
as a dependency. It is libPROBLEM.dylib that points to libgfortran as a dependency, and
that was compiled independently of Matlab. You can check these facts using the following
commands. The command
otool -L libPROBLEM.dylib
outputs the libraries on which libPROBLEM.dylib depends. Among them, you should see
libgfortran. On my system, the result of the above command is
libPROBLEM.dylib (compatibility version 0.0.0, current version 0.0.0)
/usr/local/opt/gcc/lib/gcc/7/libgfortran.4.dylib (compatibility version 5.0.0, current version 5.0.0)
/usr/lib/libSystem.B.dylib (compatibility version 1.0.0, current version 1238.60.2)
/usr/local/lib/gcc/7/libgcc_s.1.dylib (compatibility version 1.0.0, current version 1.0.0)
/usr/local/opt/gcc/lib/gcc/7/libquadmath.0.dylib (compatibility version 1.0.0, current version 1.0.0)
Because mcutest.mexmaci64 is also a shared library, the same command also works:
otool -L mcutest.mexmaci64
libPROBLEM.dylib (compatibility version 0.0.0, current version 0.0.0)
/usr/local/opt/cutest/libexec/objects/mac64.osx.gfo/double/libcutest_double.dylib (compatibility version 0.0.0, current version 0.0.0)
@rpath/libmx.dylib (compatibility version 0.0.0, current version 0.0.0)
@rpath/libmex.dylib (compatibility version 0.0.0, current version 0.0.0)
/usr/lib/libc++.1.dylib (compatibility version 1.0.0, current version 307.5.0)
/usr/lib/libSystem.B.dylib (compatibility version 1.0.0, current version 1238.50.2)
No mention of libgfortran.
You should be all set. See $CUTEST/src/matlab/README.matlab for more
information on the Matlab interface.
Good luck!
Dominique Orban <>
for the CUTEst team
July 2017.