Setting up a new Mac for Development

Setting up a new Mac for Development

Bryan Dugan3 min read

This is the Homebrew Cask setup of my personal development laptop. Feel free to use this as a starting point for a fresh install of any new OSX machine.

Installing Homebrew

Homebrew is a command-line interface(CLI) package manager for OSX.

To get started, install Apple's xcode command line tools. To do this, you first need to install xcode from the App Store. Once xcode is installed, open it and click xcode > Preferences > Locations > Command Line Tools.

To install Homebrew, copy and paste the below command into your terminal to get started. If the below command doesn't work, take a look at the Homebrew documentation.

/bin/bash -c "$(curl -fsSL"

Add Homebrew to your $PATH

In order for Homebrew to work properly, your bin directory must first be added to your $PATH.

echo 'export PATH="/usr/local/bin:$PATH"' >> ~/.bash_profile

Installing Casks

Casks are graphical user interface(GUI) applications that will be installed to your Mac's Applications folder. For a master list of all available Cask formulae, there is one available on the official Brew website. Use the lists I created as a starting point for installing your own applications and feel free to modify them to your liking. Also, be sure to hold onto your list in a Github Gist or cloud storage for safekeeping in case you need to set up a new computer.

Design Applications

Here is a list of all the design applications that I use.

brew cask install adobe-creative-cloud
brew cask install figma
brew cask install sketch
brew cask install sketch-toolbox
brew cask install zeplin

Development Applications

These are all the development related applications that I use.

brew cask install google-chrome
brew cask install firefox
brew cask install iterm2
brew cask install jetbrains-toolbox
brew cask install visual-studio-code
brew cask install postman
brew cask install sequel-pro
brew cask install filezilla
brew cask install sourcetree

Regular Applications

Here are some other handy applications that I use on a regular basis.

brew cask install google-backup-and-sync
brew cask install spotify
brew cask install discord
brew cask install slack
brew cask install notion
brew cask install 1password

Installing Homebrew Applications

These are the most common development CLI applications that you'll be using with whatever development server you'll choose to use.

Note: These are brew formulae, NOT casks, so be sure not to use cask when installing the applications.

brew install php
brew install composer
brew install mysql
brew install yarn

Add oh-my-zsh

Laravel Valet as a Local Development Server

Laravel Valet is what I use as my local development server. I use it because it's easy to set up and doesn't require running a Vagrant box or anything else too complicated. It turns your Mac into a development server by running Nginx in the background as you start your computer. My personal favorite feature is that you can run valet park in your local development directory, and any folder in that directory becomes a .test domain. So if you have a folder called my-website, open your favorite browser and type in my-website.test and you'll be directed to your index file in the my-website folder.

To set up Valet, I highly recommend Jalen Davenport's absolutely wonderful guide on how to set up Valet. It's geared towards Craft CMS development, but the basic install is all the same for whatever type of web development you'll be doing.

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