For those of you who are Farscape fans, this is how I feel
Starting MapTool on a Mac (OS X) is a perennial issue that has come up several times, and with the support of a very helpful crew of Mac-techies, I have found a multitude of potential solutions, which I am collecting here in case it saves others (or myself) the time of searching the Forums again for these tiny morsels of wisdom. Unfortunately, each one has it's own set of issues, which are described below.1. Weblaunch
This is by far the easiest and most reliable method of running MapTool on a Mac.
I have had problems when the incorrect version of Java at the top of the list in "Java Preferences" (I have other software that won't run in the same version of Java as RPTools). This seems to be a simple fix for a rare issue.
[EDIT] The WebStart versions of previous releases also became broken when the RPTools website (and urls) changed. Updating the URLs in the jnlp file solved this issue: From within Java WebStart, you can "show jnlp file", select all text, copy, paste to your favourite text editor, make changes, save and add '.jnlp' to the file: opening this with Java Webstart will download the old version and launch properly once again.
The only major problem I have with WebStart is that at any given time, only the most recent release is accessible on the Launch page
of the RPTools site. I can understand that this makes it indeed much simpler, but with all the development versions coming out so quickly, and a lot of great content or personal campaign fiels that are only appropriate for specific builds, I often find I want to run a specific earlier build than the current release available via WebStart. Now, if I'm lucky, I still have a jnlp file from an old version hanging around in my Java Webstart, but what if I didn't use WebStart for the desired release prior to the most recent one?
For example, b55 just came out, which looks sweet, but I wanted to try out b54, which was mostly bug fixes and had fewer new features (and hopefully, fewer bugs that I care about). Anyway, I was able to hack a solution by copying the jnlp file for the b55 build, and edit one of the lines to download 1.3b54 instead, but this makes me feel uneasy, because I don't fully understand the implications of these changes, and there are a lot of lines in that jnlp file that may contain something important that also should have changed, but I have no idea what they are.The obvious solution to the need for earlier versions is to download a zip version of the desired previous release.
However, this has it's own problems, which have already been discussed:2. Double-click LaunchMapTool-OSX.command file
At first, I was all excited to see a mac-native way to launch the stand-alone zip version, now standard with the more recent builds (since the early b50s, I believe). But, when I double-clicked on it, I got the infamous error:
The file “LaunchMapTool-OSX.command” could not be executed because you do not have appropriate access privileges
Sadness. Return to RPTools forum and search. Find very concise explanation and instructions to provide executable priveleges to desired file:viewtopic.php?p=92424#p92424
you need to change the permissions of the .command file using the terminal to make it executable.
The quick method.
- Start the Terminal app which resides in /Applications/Utilities/Terminal
- type in the following (don't push return, but put a space after it)
- Drag the "LaunchMapTool-OSX.command" icon to the terminal and push return. Note the icon may not have the extension so you may just see "LaunchMapTool-OSX"
- close the terminal
You should now be able to double click on the LaunchMapTool-OSX icon and it should start MapTool.
This is becoming a very regular question I wonder if a better method of handling this needs to be introduced.
BTW, that answer to that last question is a hearty "Yes".
I tried this, and the .command file now runs, but I instead get a Terminal window with unhelpful (from my perspective) errors:
/Users/jaw/Play/D\&D/Apps/RPTools/maptool-1/LaunchMapTool-OSX.command ; exit;
JAW-MBP:~ jaw$ /Users/jaw/Play/D\&D/Apps/RPTools/maptool-1/LaunchMapTool-OSX.command ; exit;
-bash: /Users/jaw/Play/D&D/Apps/RPTools/maptool-1/LaunchMapTool-OSX.command: /bin/bash^M: bad interpreter: No such file or directory
Sadness returns.3. AppleScript to run Terminal Shell ScriptAzhrei
wrote this nifty little script a while ago that even prompts you for the memory allocation: viewtopic.php?p=45320#p45320
It works effortlessly and requires no low-level Terminal work, EXCEPT that it results in a Terminal window used to run MapTool, and if you close that Terminal Window, or quit Terminal, MapTool closes with it. The two extra prompts when launching MapTool are mildly annoying, but tolerable. I admit, it's not THAT big a deal, but I know the afformentioned co-dependent Terminal window is unnecessary and could be intimidating to less tehcnically-inclined Mac users.4. enter command directly in Terminal
This always works. Open up a Terminal window and type:
java -Xmx256M -Xss512K -jar [enter path to maptool-*.jar] run
You can even change the memory settings. But, this is not anywhere near as user-friendly as a file that can be double-clicked to run MapTool.Can I get a ".app"?
So, if there is a way to solve any of the issues I have mentioned above, I welcome the corrections, and anyone who can make these stand-alone "zip" versions easier to run, particularly previous releases, you would be showered with praise and affection from Mac users of MapTool