This MPSSE page has been deprecated in favor of the much simpler Blinka support library which is documented here This page is for historical/research purposes only, Python 2 is completely deprecated and we do not support the old Python GPIO library anymore!

To access the MPSSE mode on Mac OSX we need to install libftdi and the Adafruit Python GPIO library.  Carefully follow the steps below to install these libraries.

Note that these steps were tested using OSX Mavericks.  The steps should work for later versions like Yosemite, but you might need to search for extra help on installing Xcode command line tools below.

First before you get started you will need to make sure you have Xcode and the Xcode command line tools installed.  This is required to compile and build libraries from source.  Follow the steps in the answer to this Stackoverflow question for a good walkthrough of how to install the Xcode command line tools.

Next install the Homebrew package manager which will be used to install the necessary libftdi depedencies.  Follow the installation instructions from the bottom of Homebrew's homepage to install it.

Now run the following commands in a terminal in order to install libftdi and its dependencies:

brew install cmake
brew install libusb
brew install swig
brew install --build-from-source
mkdir -p ~/Library/Python/2.7/lib/python/site-packages
echo '/usr/local/lib/python2.7/site-packages' > ~/Library/Python/2.7/lib/python/site-packages/homebrew.pth

The commands above should complete without any errors.  If you do see errors, make sure you have Xcode and Homebrew successfully installed and try again.

Next download the Adafruit Python GPIO library by clicking the button below:

Unzip the archive and navigate to the folder inside a terminal.  Then run the following command to install the library:

sudo python install

You should see the Python library successfully install without any errors.  

To test the libraries are installed run the following command in a terminal to open the Python interpretor:

At the Python interpretor >>> prompt type the following commands to test loading the libraries:

import Adafruit_GPIO
import ftdi1

You should see no response from the Python interpretor after entering each line.  If you do see an error that a module cannot be loaded, go back to the libftdi installation steps above and carefully check they completed successfully.

If there are no errors, congratulations you've successfully installed libftdi and the Adafruit Python GPIO library!  Move on to the next section to learn how to access the MPSSE mode GPIO, SPI, I2C, etc.

To quit the Python interpretor enter the following:

Disable FTDI Driver on OSX 10.11 El Capitan

Note on OSX 10.11 El Capitan and higher you might need to permanently disable Apple's built in FTDI serial driver in order to use all of the FT232H's functions.  This can be accomplished by following section 7.3 Block with D2xxHelper from the FTDI app note here.

This guide was first published on Nov 12, 2014. It was last updated on Mar 08, 2024.

This page (Mac OSX (Deprecated)) was last updated on Mar 08, 2024.

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