51 Responses

Page 1 of 2
  1. James
    James June 2, 2009 at 7:26 pm |

    Excellent, thanks!

  2. Stefano
    Stefano July 28, 2009 at 5:02 am |

    I am really frustrated with Inkscape on my MAC for the same kinds of problems. Unfortunatelly I cannot use your tip because: I do not have the command easy-install and I cannot find it in Macports and my inkscape port did not result in anything in /Applications/Inkscape.app/Contents/Resources/lib and I do not know where to find the file libxml2.2.dylib of inkscape. Could you please help me?

  3. Bill Gathen
    Bill Gathen September 21, 2009 at 12:11 pm |

    @Stefano I think there’s a typo in the solution. It’s easy_install on my system (Leopard), not easy-install.

    The fix didn’t get me working, but my build is from March 2008.

  4. Ricardo Meza
    Ricardo Meza October 20, 2009 at 1:08 am |

    Cool, It works!

    Thank you!

  5. Don Smith
    Don Smith November 15, 2009 at 11:01 am |

    Thanks for posting. Your post was the first search hit and it worked swimmingly. Thanks!

  6. Robert
    Robert December 18, 2009 at 3:51 pm |

    One question: do you need the MacPorts version of Inkscape for this to work or should it work on the Mac version from the Inkscape website?

  7. Ryan Willis
    Ryan Willis February 21, 2010 at 7:58 am |

    Thank you for posting this!!!

  8. Vincent
    Vincent March 8, 2010 at 5:32 am |

    I was very excited when I found this, but it didn’t work for me : (

    Now I get:

    Failed to import the numpy or numpy.linalg modules.
    I’m using 0.47 and don’t seem to have any of these path effects available under Extension

  9. Vincent
    Vincent March 8, 2010 at 5:38 am |

    Also : is it a problem that when I tried to install the lxml I got:

    NOTE: Trying to build without Cython, pre-generated ‘src/lxml/lxml.etree.c’ needs to be available.

    Using build configuration of libxslt 1.1.24

  10. daniele
    daniele March 19, 2010 at 6:29 am |

    it works, after many month attempting to find a solution, thank you

  11. Rich Apodaca
    Rich Apodaca March 27, 2010 at 4:56 pm |

    Worked great for me, but like Vincent I got an error about numpy. I needed to install it:

    $ sudo easy_install -U numpy

    Then things seemed to work ok.

  12. Matthias
    Matthias April 30, 2010 at 6:38 am |

    You made my day! Thank you very much for sharing this hint. It worked like charm for me. Also the numpy installation (see previous comment), despite a terribly long list of warnings, worked without problems. (Inkscape 0.47 r22583, built Nov 24 2009 on a Mac running OS X 10.6.3 Build 10D573)

  13. Murat
    Murat June 20, 2010 at 2:43 pm |


    Thank you for sharing this tip with us. I have just installed the last dev version (it says 0.48 in the Help/About), but I meet the same problem. I have MacPorts installed on my MacBook Pro (OSX 10.6.4 French). I have also tried to execute the steps you indicate, they do not seem to solve the problem. So, I am afraid that some of us will continue to meet this problem even with the next version 🙁

  14. Ad Bakker
    Ad Bakker June 30, 2010 at 6:15 am |

    I tried this, but it didn’t work. No error messages when the commands were executed, but after that no improvement. Extensions still do not work.
    I use an Imac 21.5 with OSX 10.6.4

  15. Remigiusz Modrzejewski
    Remigiusz Modrzejewski July 5, 2010 at 5:34 pm |

    For me it did not work in the 0.48 out of the box, neither any hints I googled help. So I found my own way:


  16. BassMIstressS
    BassMIstressS August 27, 2010 at 3:52 pm |

    After 4 days of being unable to get my Extensions working this was soooo refreshing. I had found another site, but it was for 10.5.8 so some of the steps worked, but none resulted in it working. But apparently after reading the comments perhaps the two together were what worked. I already had Macports installed and configured. But was having an issue with mine having been updated to autoconf 2.67 rather than the 2.61 that the instructions were built for. So since yesterday afternoon I was stuck.
    Pleased I found this today, as it 100% worked and I am now back at making my graphics!
    Thing that killed me was that I had just received my intuos4 medium wireless tablet and was unable to use the extensions… 🙁
    but happy creating… thank you soooo much!

  17. Hacyran
    Hacyran August 29, 2010 at 1:27 am |

    Excellent. Made my day. Thanks a lot.

  18. Jeroen
    Jeroen September 30, 2010 at 12:07 pm |

    How can I force a version? easy_install went automatically for 2.3.beta. I would have prefered 2.2.8

  19. Jeroen
    Jeroen September 30, 2010 at 12:26 pm |

    2.3.beta made it go wrong with missing numpy and numpy.linealg. To force the version number one can use lxml==2.2.8. But the python forces as slashdot suggested pip as the more mature alternative for easy_install

    Thanks for the post by the way!

  20. Diskus
    Diskus November 4, 2010 at 12:43 pm |

    Thanks a lot for this solution. I was close to becoming mental before I found this site.

  21. André Berg
    André Berg December 10, 2010 at 7:21 am |

    If you have multiple Pythons installed keep in mind that a shell script inside the Inkscape.app bootstraps Inkscape into starting up. Inside this shellscript a PATH is exported that results in alternative package managers (MacPorts, Fink) getting searched/loaded first, then MacPython (/Library/Frameworks/Python.framework), then the system libraries.

    Also I think since 0.48 Inkscape not only includes its own python/site-packages inside the Resources subdir but in this numpy and lxml are included by default for i386 arch (32-bit).

    Have a look at “/Applications/Inkscape.app/Contents/Resources/bin/inkscape” which is the shell script that contains the PATH order. They also explain starting at line 15 in that file why they do it and in what order.

    So since I had a well maintained MacPython 2.7.1 (the official installation from python.org) installation at /Library/Frameworks/Python.framework with lxml and numpy installed by myself in the past all I had to do was to modify the “inkscape” bootstrap shell script and reorder the PATH so that my custom MacPython would be found before my MacPorts, the system Python etc.

    Also you don’t need to delete the “python” dir that comes with Inkscape in order to block their included site-packages from loading. Look at line 26 in “inkscape” bootstrap script:

    “# Setup PYTHONPATH to use python modules shipped with Inkscape”

    There you can comment the modification out and you should now be certain to have only your custom Python used.

  22. Roy
    Roy December 12, 2010 at 5:12 pm |
  23. S
    S January 10, 2011 at 6:59 pm |

    Hello… I was trying to make the Inkscape extensions work on y mac following your suggestions, but this is what I get (see bottom)… I really have no idea about how to make modules work… Any help will be really really appreciated! Thanks in anticipation

    Searching for lxml
    Reading http://pypi.python.org/simple/lxml/
    Reading http://codespeak.net/lxml
    Best match: lxml 2.3beta1
    Downloading http://pypi.python.org/packages/source/l/lxml/lxml-2.3beta1.tar.gz
    Processing lxml-2.3beta1.tar.gz
    Running lxml-2.3beta1/setup.py -q bdist_egg –dist-dir /var/folders/rT/rTedixqpGt4Om-OLORMkDU+++TI/-Tmp-/easy_install-l14G19/lxml-2.3beta1/egg-dist-tmp-GgwrKk
    Building lxml version 2.3.beta1.
    NOTE: Trying to build without Cython, pre-generated ‘src/lxml/lxml.etree.c’ needs to be available.
    Using build configuration of libxslt 1.1.24
    unable to execute gcc-4.2: No such file or directory
    error: Setup script exited with error: command ‘gcc-4.2’ failed with exit status 1
    silva-ferrettis-macbook-pro-2:lib silva$

  24. DODOcase
    DODOcase January 19, 2011 at 7:18 pm |

    @S I had the same problem as you’re showing. The install cant fine the gcc compiler. You need to install the Mac OSX XCode Development Tools from the apple developer site. That will solve the problem you are seeing. But as yet I’ve been unable to solve the problem with the original inkscape error message that we came here to resolve.

  25. David Galvan
    David Galvan January 25, 2011 at 6:42 pm |

    Thanks for posting this! solved my problem.

  26. David Galvan
    David Galvan January 26, 2011 at 3:46 am |

    scratch that: following this blog post I was indeed able to change the arrow head color with the line. However, when I quit inkscape and tried to open another .eps file, inkscape reported that ps2pdf failed, and now I am no longer able to open eps files in inkscape! Anyone else have this problem?

  27. Dakota
    Dakota November 14, 2011 at 12:38 pm |

    I LOVE YOU this was so awesome! THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!! I had been searching for a fix for days!!

  28. Salvatore
    Salvatore January 4, 2012 at 2:20 pm |

    Well, this is a known bug. It was reported to the Inkscape devs here:

  29. Mark
    Mark January 4, 2012 at 2:46 pm |

    It’s going to be officially fixed in 0.48.3 for Mac OS X 10.7. 😀


  30. Luke Kellett
    Luke Kellett March 12, 2012 at 3:57 am |

    Awesome fix, worked like a charm 🙂

  31. ykiri
    ykiri May 11, 2012 at 5:57 pm |


  32. YourWriterYourEditor
    YourWriterYourEditor July 15, 2012 at 4:48 pm |

    I installed inkscape w/X11. But the I wanted GIMP which requires XQuark so I uninstalled inkscape and ultimately X11b/c it would let Gimp and XQuark have precedence. Now I still need inkscape but I don’t want X11. So where do I find inkscape w/11 or inkscape with XQuark. Help me please.

  33. YourWriterYourEditor
    YourWriterYourEditor July 15, 2012 at 4:48 pm |

    That should say it would *not* let Gimp and XQuark have precedence.

  34. Milan
    Milan December 5, 2012 at 1:01 am |

    thank you, it was very useful

  35. Alex
    Alex January 6, 2013 at 8:42 am |
  36. Neil
    Neil April 16, 2013 at 6:37 am |


    I’ve been struggling with this for….for age!

    The EggBot ‘fixer’ did the job for me. Big thank you to the author and ^ Alex for finding/posting the link.

  37. Inkscapeのlibxmlの修正 | Test
  38. Veronica
    Veronica May 15, 2013 at 7:51 am |

    Thanks! This solved my problem.

  39. Diane Challenor (@CynthiaBlue44)
    Diane Challenor (@CynthiaBlue44) July 26, 2013 at 2:47 am |

    I’m missing basic knowledge, that is, where will I place the code mentioned above, that is :
    sudo easy_install lxml
    cd /Applications/Inkscape.app/Contents/Resources/lib
    mv libxml2.2.dylib libxml2.2.dylib.old
    ln -s /usr/lib/libxml2.dylib

  40. rokeby
    rokeby December 5, 2013 at 6:49 pm |

    This worked also for me – thanks a lot!

  41. winston
    winston February 8, 2014 at 11:50 am |

    This is amazing, how did you do it? The resolution on retina macbook is so much better than xquartz.

  42. Jonny
    Jonny February 23, 2014 at 9:42 am |

    I downloaded the 048.4 version with partial retina support, But the canvas is still not supported. Is there another version, which has retina support for the Canvas (perhaps if anyone implements such a thing it should be given back to the community, so that the builds on the site support it in the future.


  43. 4/VII/14 | Hoy aprendí…
    4/VII/14 | Hoy aprendí… July 4, 2014 at 7:53 am |
  44. Sergio Renteria
    Sergio Renteria July 13, 2014 at 1:56 am |


  45. Callum Vincent
    Callum Vincent October 28, 2015 at 2:37 pm |

    Necropost, but this is the top Google search and the solution above fails. I have installed Inkscape via homebrew, so this may not work with the website binaries, look above for the solution.

    TL;DR fix:
    Make sure you are using the system version of python, check with
    which python
    ❯ /usr/bin/python

    Install python package manager pip, if it isn’t already
    sudo easy_install pip

    Use pip to install libxml into your system python
    sudo pip install lxml
    ❯ Collecting lxml…


    Basically the problem is that Inkscape is hardcoded to use the system python build, to avoid conflicts with other python builds. But I presume in a recent update of OSX they have removed the libxml library from the system build.

    Firstly I had to delete my homebrew install of python, it’s the same version (2.7.10) as the system build so no loss. Secondly, I needed to install pip to the system python using;
    ❯ sudo easy_install pip
    Finally, I installed libxml to the system python install with;
    ❯ sudo pip install lxml


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.