[vtkusers] Using vtkpython with X11 on headless Mac OS X systems

W.T. Bridgman William.T.Bridgman at nasa.gov
Wed Dec 12 13:10:47 EST 2007

I'm trying to build vtkpython to run on some Macs in a cluster.  Mac  
OS X 10.4.11, Python 2.4.4, VTK fairly recently from CVS.

Using the guidance I've found on the list, I seem to have a partially  
successful X11 build for vtk/vtkpython.  I can run the c sample  
programs like Cone and have it display through the X11 window to  
another Mac or linux machine, but the vtkpython programs fail with an  
X11 error like allocating colors, etc.

I'm thinking this may be because the default Tk on the Mac doesn't  
have X11 installed.  Am I correct in assuming that the vtkpython  
graphical components are piped through Tk?

It appears that the TclTkAquaBI installation installs a Tk X11  
framework for the Mac and I am thinking about installing that and  
rebuilding VTK.

Does anyone on the list have experience with this or can provide some  
hint as to whether I'm on the right track?


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