Binaries over different os10 versions

Ryan Schmidt ryandesign at
Thu Dec 17 07:40:49 UTC 2020

On Dec 12, 2020, at 15:23, dan d. wrote:

> Does a binary, like lynx the browser, work over several versions of os10.  I have one older machine which version is 6 upgrades removed from
> the most recent one.  Will that lynx continue to work if most of the versions are skipped by installing a more recent version of os10? -- I
> was thinking instead of doing the macports step by step migration for a newer os10 i would just do an install from scratch but keep the older
> binaries I frequently use until the macports for the new version is installed

If you compile something on one version of macOS, then yes, it continues to be usable on later versions of macOS, with certain exceptions. This is why applications that you download from the App Store or from developer web sites often continue to work even if you use a newer version of the OS than the developer did. Some exceptions are that a binary compiled for PowerPC cannot run on 10.7 or later, and a binary compiled for 32-bit Intel cannot run on 10.15 or later.

If you upgrade the OS and reinstall MacPorts but do not reinstall or upgrade any of your ports, your installed ports will probably continue to work on the new OS. But once you start upgrading or installing some of your ports, all bets are off with regard to those ports that you have not yet upgraded or reinstalled. For example, if you had lynx installed before, then you upgrade your OS but do not upgrade any ports, lynx will probably work on the new OS. But if you then upgrade some ports, lynx may stop working, for example because you upgraded one of the libraries that lynx uses and perhaps your older lynx binary is incompatible with the new version of the library. Upgrading/reinstalling lynx and all other ports on your new OS version would get you back to a consistent matched set of ports.

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