Greenstone 2.50a for Mac OS X

This package contains a binary version of Greenstone 2.50a, compiled on Mac OS X version 10.2.6 and tested on 10.3.2. It should work on Jaguar (OS X version 10.3) and earlier.

There may be a newer version of this help file online at

This packages includes the Greenstone Librarian Interface, a new module designed to make it easier to create collections.

The Greenstone Mac OSX Binary package 2.50a is identical to Version 2.50 except it includes a fix for the installation of "GLI". If you have already downloaded version 2.50, instead of downloading 2.50a you can correct this mistake by editting the file /Applications/Greenstone/gli/classes/xml/config.xml and changing the line that says

<Argument name="general.exec_address"></Address>
<Argument name="general.exec_address"></Argument>


The recommended way to install Greenstone 2.50 for Mac OS X is by using the "Greenstone Installer".

Using the "Greenstone Installer"

This requires an administrator account so that required files can be copied into the correct locations (such as for the Apache Webserver). By default this will install into the /Applications/Greenstone folder.

Manual Install

You may copy the Greenstone directory to anywhere you like on the hard drive, but you will need to manually make some changes:
  1. edit Greenstone/cgi-bin/gsdlsite.cfg and set the correct Greenstone directory for the gsdlhome configuration item.
  2. edit Greenstone/gli/ and provide the correct Greenstone directory for the gsdlpath flag.
  3. Copy or symbolic link some files into the Apache Webserver's directories:
  4. The Webserver needs to be able to write to some files in the Greenstone/etc directory: error.txt, history.db, key.db, usage.txt and users.db.
  5. Because the default password for the Greenstone web administration interface can't be changed during a manual install, the web administration is turned off by default. Edit the Greenstone/etc/main.cfg file and change the "status" and "collector" options from disabled to enabled. After this, the first thing you should do is use the web interface to change the administrator password. (The default password is "admin").

Once Greenstone has been installed and successfully set up to run under Apache Webserver, you should be able to visit to see your Greenstone installation via the web.

"Apache" Web Server Setup

Mac OSX comes with a built-in webserver, named "apache". To configure apache to run Greenstone via the web, you have to place some Greenstone files in certain places. With Mac OS X, only users in the "admin" group can modify apache settings.

Make sure apache is running. You can start apache by clicking on the Apple in the top-left corner of the screen, going to "System Preferences...", and clicking on "Sharing" in the Internet & Network group. If it says Web Sharing On then apache is already running. If it is off and you can't turn it on, then someone who knows the administrator password must click on the lock at the bottom of the window.

If you want other people to be able to access your Greenstone installation via a network, make sure that "Personal Web Sharing" is set to "allowed" in the Firewall properties tab.

Interface Language Support

This version of greenstone only includes English, French, Russian and Spanish language support in the base install. To get support for all the other languages that Greenstone can use, please install the Greenstone Language Pack from Greenstone's Sourceforge pages. (Choose the version of the Language Pack.)

Greenstone Librarian Interface

This binary distribution of Greenstone includes the Greenstone Librarian Interface (GLI). This interface is a new way of creating and modifying digital libraries, and is more user-friendly than the command-line and web-based methods.

When you first start the Greenstone Librarian Interface, it will ask for the URL to the local running Webserver. If you installed Greenstone into the default locations, then You should enter the above url:
If you choose not to enter this during the first start up, you can change this setting at anytime by going to the File menu, selecting Preferences, and change the "Library Path" setting in the Connection tab.

If you chose to use the Greenstone Installer, then you will find the Greenstone Librarian Interface installed by default in /Applications/Greenstone/GLI.


This distribution of Greenstone for Mac OS X includes a working version of the KEA Keyphrase extractor. Unfortunately it is not yet incorporated into the Librarian Interface, but it can be used by adding "-extract_keyphrases" as a custom argument to plugins. In the Librarian Interface, this is done in the "Design" tab, under "Plug-ins", and then "Configure Selected Plugin". Otherwise if you are not using the Librarian Interface, this can be added manually after the plugin's name in the collection's collect.cfg file.

This distribution includes Greenstone's "Demo" collection. It is pre-built, but the source documents are also provided so that you can re-build it using the command line instructions, the "Collector" web interface, or you can clone the collection using the Greenstone Librarian Interface.

Mac OS X version 10.3 uses a more recent version of the perl scripting language (perl 5.8) than 10.2 and earlier (perl 5.6). While we believe that this distribution will work with perl 5.8, please let us know if you encounter any problems that appear to be related to perl.

If you want to use the Image Plugin, you will need to do two things:

  1. Download and install the ImageMagick package if it is not already installed. Greenstone's ImagePlug needs the "convert" and "identify" programs in this package.
  2. Make sure your Greenstone can find these programs. If they are installed anywhere other than "/usr/bin", then you will probably need to set your PATH correctly, both in the command line, and for the Greenstone Librarian Interface. Add the following line somewhere after the first line of /Applications/Greenstone/gli/
    (assuming you installed it into the /usr/local/bin directory.)

For support, feedback, and more documentation, visit Greenstone's home page.

Last modified 27 Apr 2004 by John McPherson