Tutorial 1: Downloading and Installing Gimp on the Mac: The complete beginners guide
The prerequisites: X11 or XQuartz?
X11 is Apple's version of the X.org X Window System, and is required to run Gimp for Mac.
While you can compile Gimp to not use X11, it is unstable, and barely usable at times, therefore it is not recommended.
If you're installing Gimp on a Mac that either runs Leopard, Snow Leopard, or something newer, you will want to download XQuartz instead.
XQuartz is an open-source, community driving X11 project, designed to be used instead of (or along side) Apple's X11.
1. Determine what version of Mac OSX you're using.
Click on the Apple logo in the top-left hand of your screen, and select “About This Mac”. A small window will pop up.
Note the version number.
Mac OS X 10.4 is Tiger
Mac OS X 10.5 is Leopard
Mac OS X 10.6 is Snow Leopard
Mac OS X 10.7 is Lion
(Note: At the time of this tutorial's writing, no Gimp or XQuartz builds exist for Lion)
2. Download and install XQuartz. (Skip this step if your Mac version is less that 10.5.x)
To go to the XQuartz website, click here, or copy and paste this link into your web-browsers address bar. http://xquartz.macosforge.org/trac/wiki
Then click on the newest release (shown as 2.6.3 in screenshot).
Select the version that matches your Mac OS X version, which will begin the download.
Once you have downloaded the package, open it up, and double-click on the installer package to begin the installation.
Now that you have installed XQuartz, you will need to log off of your computer and log back in (or simply restart your machine) to complete the installation, and to begin using Gimp.
3. Download and install Gimp.
Go to lisanet's Gimp website, which is listed below, and download the proper version of Gimp. Open up the package, and drag the Gimp.app into your Applications folder.
And that's it! It's not too difficult, just remember, that when running Gimp, either the X11.app or the XQuartz.app will start, and are required for Gimp to run. Closing one of these apps would be like closing Gimp itself.
Here are some post-installation tips:
Trouble with having to click on the tool windows twice to select a tool? Then turn on “Focus Follows Mouse”.
In the upper left-hand corner of your screen, select the X11 menu, and click on “Preferences”. Go to the “Windows” tab, and check “Focus Follows Mouse”.
Troubles with tablet support?
In the main Gimp window, select “Edit”, and then “Preferences”. Go down to “Input Devices”, and then click on “Configure Extended Input Devices”. Select each of your devices, and set them to “Screen”.
Note: Turning on your tablet will DISABLE your mouse's ability to click anywhere on the canvas. To restore mouse functionality, revert the modes back to “Disabled”.
Annoyed with that Mac look-alike theme?
In the main Gimp window, select “Edit”, and then “Preferences”. Go to “Theme”, and select “ProApp” (or any other theme). Enjoy!
Want to install the Gimp User Manual?
Download and install the manual from lisanet's website, here: http://gimp.lisanet.de/Website/Download.html
Thanks for reading this tutorial. In the next tutorial, I will try to explain Gimp's user interface.