Day 1: Learning How to Package OS X Downloads

Today is the official start of the 30-Day challenge. So let’s all discreetly pretend that I didn’t jump the gun and get a head start. Shhh!

Today I worked on getting the build process complete. The OS X Leopard DVD includes a whole bunch of developer tools. I discovered, thanks to a previous comment, that one of those tools is PackageMaker. These tools also include an excellent article describing how best to package different types of OS X apps. Yet again I’m glad I’m using a Mac these days.

I also found an excellent tool online called BuildDesk. It creates distributions for Java apps. It creates Windows builds and Mac builds. It handles compiling, packaging the code into a jar, creating a native wrapper, obfuscating and creating the installer. I gave it a test, and I think it is great value. After spending a few minutes watching the online demo and another 30 minutes of trial and error, I have ready-to-install distributions for multiple platforms.

BuildDesk does seem to focus more on Windows, because it doesn’t quite finish the process on OS X. But a short shell script I wrote takes care of the last couple of steps of creating an Internet-aware DMG.

PS: Thrynn, if you are there, please send me an e-mail.