Great news! Installing the Holochain dev tools is easier on macOS and Windows

(for certain values of macOS and Windows – macOS Catalina and Windows 10 with the May 2020 update. macOS Mojave always worked great, and we’re dropping support for Windows 8 and earlier.)

There are two developments in the land of operating systems that have happened to land within weeks of each other, making it much easier for macOS and Windows developers to start using Holochain.

macOS 10.15 (Catalina)

The developers of the Nix package manager, which we use to build our Holonix developer’s environment, have fixed a long-standing installation issue on macOS Catalina. As you may know, Catalina introduced a read-only system volume to protect your OS from unauthorised tampering. This broke Nix, which stores its files in that volume. With this fix, you don’t need any clever workarounds; just install Nix using the following command:

$ sh <(curl --darwin-use-unencrypted-nix-store-volume

Then proceed with the installation of Holonix as normal.

Windows 10

The May 2020 update of Windows 10 finally includes Windows Subsystem for Linux 2 (WSL2). This new version of WSL is quite different; it runs a full Linux kernel in a VM and is apparently much faster and more compatible with various Linux tools—including Nix. Once you install this update, you should be able to use Holonix seamlessly without installing VirtualBox and Vagrant. (Which is welcome news if you’ve had trouble accessing the conductor from a web browser.) The Holonix installation guide for Windows will take you through the simplified procedure.

Let us know how it goes!

If you’ve tried to install Holonix and failed, now’s the time to try again. Share your feedback below, so I can catch/fix bugs in my new install guide or explore new issues that we don’t know about yet. Thanks!

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