Running LTspice IV on Mac OS X
Before I start testing a new idea for an electronic circuit and building it on a breadboard, I usually want to check it with LTspice. It’s a fantastic piece of software for testing almost any kind of component. Nearly all manufacturers have a spice equivalent for most of their parts. But there’s a snag. The Mac version of LTspice is a piece of crap. Having to run a virtual PC or reboot using BootCamp feels unnecessarily slow and convoluted. But there’s a way of running it as a “normal” Mac application. Here’s how to do it.
WineBottler is an app that uses the Wine Windows compatibility layer, so it’s not an emulator and is fast. It creates standalone applications and includes everything needed for Wine to work. So you’ll have a double-clickable program in your application folder. There is a commercial version of Wine for Mac called CrossOver, but for me, WineBottler works excellent.
Not all Windows applications are compatible in Wine, but LTspice IV works like a charm. Download WineBottler here.
Installing LTspice IV on Mac with WineBottler
Start WineBottler. The initial screen shows some preconfigured applications that are available. Press the button Advanced.
Go to Linear Technology’s homepage and download the Windows version of LTspice IV. There’s a Mac version, but a lot of stuff is missing and is horrible.
In WineBottler, leave all the default settings under Advanced and press “Select file…” under Programs to install.
Now you only have to press the Install button, and WineBottler does it’s thing. Save the app in your Applications folder for easy access.
And here you have it, LTspice IV running as a separate application on your Mac! Yay!
Don’t forget to donate to the WineBottler guys for making this tool available for free.