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brew-pkg is a Homebrew external command that builds an OS X installer package from a formula. The formula must first already be installed on the system.


Assuming nginx is already installed:

brew pkg nginx

==> Creating package staging root using Homebrew prefix /usr/local
==> Staging formula nginx
==> Plist found at homebrew.mxcl.nginx, staging for /Library/LaunchDaemons/homebrew.mxcl.nginx.plist
==> Building package nginx-1.2.6.pkg

It can also automatically include the formula's dependencies:

brew pkg --with-deps --without-kegs ffmpeg

==> Creating package staging root using Homebrew prefix /usr/local
==> Staging formula ffmpeg
==> Staging formula pkg-config
==> Staging formula texi2html
==> Staging formula yasm
==> Staging formula x264
==> Staging formula faac
==> Staging formula lame
==> Staging formula xvid
==> Building package ffmpeg-1.1.pkg

By default behaviour brew pkg include all package kegs located in /usr/local/Cellar/packagename. If you need to exclude it, specify option --without-kegs

Installing it

brew-pkg is available from my formulae tap. Add the tap:

brew tap timsutton/formulae

Then install as any other formula:

brew install brew-pkg


If a formula has defined a launchd plist, brew-pkg will also install this to the package's root in /Library/LaunchDaemons.

You can also define a custom identifier prefix in the reverse-domain convention with the --identifier-prefix option, ie. brew pkg --identifier-prefix org.nagios nrpe. If there is a launchd plist defined, this same prefix is currently not applied to the plist.

You can set the path to custom preinstall and postinstall scripts with the --scripts option which is just literally passed through to the pkgbuild command.
For more information refer to man pkgbuild which explains that --scripts scripts_path archive the entire contents of scripts-path as the package scripts. If this directory contains scripts named preinstall and/or postinstall, these will be run as the top-level scripts of the package [...].


brew-pkg is MIT-licensed.


Build OS X installer packages directly from Homebrew formulae




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