The developers of Darktable, an open source photo editing alternative to Adobe Lightroom will likely have to end MacOS support after the next major release 4.2.1.

For the last 10 years, a single person has been responsible for maintaining and packaging Darktable for MacOS. Unfortunately, that tenure is coming to an end for the developer as they move onto other things in life.

From Darktable Lead

At the same time, there is a big roadblock on the OS X side:
currently, as requested by @parafin, the minimal required
XCode version is XCode 12.4 (LLVM10-based),
and with LLVM16 about to be released in ~April,
that puts us to 7 (sic) LLVM versions to support,
in addition to currently supporting three GCC releases.

Not only is this support matrix unsustainable,
not having a path forward makes it impossible
to someday make use of the compiler (and library)
features introduced in later compiler versions.

In summary, unless someone steps forwards and commits
to the role of OSX maintainer, we will be forced to
fully and completely stop supporting OS X,
after the next minor release (4.2.1).

If you are interested to help, please step forward.
We really need a long term dedication to solve this.
An Open Source software can only offer what
the community can work on.

https://discuss.pixls.us/t/darktable-for-macos-needs-you/35142
Some of our articles may include affiliate links. If you purchase through these links, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you.

Go to discussion...

Share.

16 comments

  1. The unfortunate reality of software development: it requires time, moneys and expertise even to just maintain software, not to mention active development. That\'s why the most stable tools are those where you pay subscription.
  2. The unfortunate reality of software development: it requires time, moneys and expertise even to just maintain software, not to mention active development. That's why the most stable tools are those where you pay subscription.
    That's the root cause for Linux not having as many apps & games as Windows. Companies aren't willing to invest in having them ported and maintained on multiple Linux distros and platforms (Fedora on X86, ARM, MIPS, and RISC V). The cost of Linux's freedom is supporting apps on it (actually all of these) is like hoarding cats.
  3. The unfortunate reality of software development: it requires time, moneys and expertise even to just maintain software, not to mention active development. That\'s why the most stable tools are those where you pay subscription.
    And yet camera people are always like "Why can't they add that to my camera? It is only software."
    Like software development is always free.
  4. Complaining about compiler versions is similar to complaining about lens mounts not being metal: In very specific instances you might have a point, but generally you’re trying to distract from a different issue.

    And yes, you can easily google up instances of me complaining about compiler versions :)
  5. And yet camera people are always like "Why can't they add that to my camera? It is only software."
    Like software development is always free.
    We pay for software in the price for the camera and Canon is making a healthy profit.
  6. Complaining about compiler versions is similar to complaining about lens mounts not being metal: In very specific instances you might have a point, but generally you’re trying to distract from a different issue.
    It makes no difference if the "issue" is in the compiler or in something else when there is no one to fix it.
  7. It makes no difference if the "issue" is in the compiler or in something else when there is no one to fix it.
    Exactly, the lack of actual people is a much, much stronger argument than the wall of text about compiler versions. You can't argue against a lack of people, you can (and I will) argue against bogus technical excuses.
  8. We pay for software in the price for the camera and Canon is making a healthy profit.
    What accounting do you get that from?
    I have no idea what software development costs Canon.
    If you have any numbers then please let me know.
  9. What accounting do you get that from?
    I have no idea what software development costs Canon.
    If you have any numbers then please let me know.
    I just wrote Canon makes a healthy profit and I made no statement whatsoever in my one-line post of how much they spend on software development. Here is the info on their profit, posted recently on CR.

  10. What accounting do you get that from?
    I have no idea what software development costs Canon.
    If you have any numbers then please let me know.
    Are you saying that the development and maintenance costs of Canon's in-house software is not recovered via their revenue on product sales (including camera bodies)? Of course it is. They produce software such as DPP and EOS Utility to encourage people to buy their cameras. 'Firmware' - which is updated periodically - is just a form of software which is not charged for directly, but will find its way (in a cost accounting sense) into the list price of cameras and lenses etc.

    Short of a leak from Canon head office, we'll never know what version of absorption costing they actually use, and how they allocate these sort of background costs, but I can pretty solidly predict it'll find it's way into selling price somehow.
  11. That's really sad! I am a huge fan of some Darktable tools, and I said good-bye to Adobe products because I don't like subscription models - you end up with 10+ software packages on your computer and wonder where the all the money blows away. Subscription forces one to very frequent cashflow control, but I prefer to use my spare lifetime for activities such as photography.

    Darktable it is was a good alternative to Lightroom. The interface is was a bit edgy, typical freeware, but it provided a mighty set of useful tools. Looks like I have to go for Capture One, since they still offer a one time license option, or DxO (not funny for a Canon user), not sure about Affinity (read very mixed comments of users).
  12. I wanted to update this to clarify some things.

    First and foremost, builds will continue for macOS, for the time being. It's a painful and sluggish process, but they are going to try to keep it going until it becomes untenable, which it IS becoming, due to the recent changes in Apple's ecosystem and the fact that there are multiple versions of old Intel hardware and OS X software to support. The lone dev who has been maintaining the macOS builds uses an ancient Macbook with equally ancient software that can't be updated, so he can't do anything further with his own meager resources and the ideal plan is to have several people, with several generations of Mac hardware/software doing the work, but it's impractical and untenable without significantly more resources available. That means that without a dedicated dev team solely for macOS hardware/software, the software will become unavailable on that platform. One idea being considered, is to abandon the Intel Mac hardware entirely and focus entirely on the ARM64 development, as the limited dev resources would be better utilized that way. Another issue is that Apple has abandoned the ancient and unsupported OpenCL API - a key part of darktable's infrastructure for multi-platform use - in their products and may remove it's functionality through their OS software updates, which will effectively end it's use and make it impossible to have darktable, without switching the macOS builds to newer APIs that may or may not be multi-platform.

Leave a comment

Please log in to your forum account to comment