Error instaling ENVI on Apple OS X – “cat: .0: No such file or directory”

The other day one of our students wanted ENVI 4.8 on his shiny new fresh-out-of-the-box Apple laptop.

It installs fine up to the point where post installation the License Wizard is supposed to pop up.  At this point, I get an error:  “cat: .0: No such file or directory”

Screen Shot 2013-04-24 at 16.31.19.2

If I try to launch the License Wizard manually (by running /Applications/itt/idlxx/LicenseWizard), I get the same error.

After some investigating I notice that this laptop does not have X11 installed, which is required to run ENVI and the License Wizard. A call to Exelis (kudos to Joe) confirms that the missing X11 this is probably causing the error.

Hm, and I thought Apple OS X comes with built-in X11…

It turns out it doesn’t anymore: Apple have dropped X11 from OS X 10.8 (Mountain Lion). For users of ENVI and many other scientific software products this means if you have OS X 10.8 (Mountain Lion) you need to install an X Windows System before you can run ENVI.

So you need to:

  1. Install XQuartz (Apple’s open-sourced X11 implementation). see Apple KB HT5293
  2. Install ENVI. For instructions see the ENVI installation and licensing guide: http://www.exelisvis.com/portals/0/pdfs/envi/Installation_and_Licensing_Guide.pdf
  3. If you use concurrent licensing (like at Manchester University) here is how to set it up.
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