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  • If you have issues with installation, first check that your system meets the minimum requirements listed here: Note that you need cmake – if installation of 'mariadb' fails, you probably do not have cmake installed ('conda install cmake' is an easy way to get it).
  • Check for other known issues here: 
  • You can also search for similar problems on 
  • If you are having issues specifically with pyephem or healpy on a Mac, check for the existence of a /Developer directory. This directory is obsolete after upgrading to newer versions of XCode, but not removed by the XCode installer. Rename the /Developer directory and pyephem will install. 
  • If you are using your own python, be sure to check the Using Your Own Python page. In particular, on Linux, some lsst_apps packages will currently fail to build if the "nomkl" package is not installed in anaconda.
  • On a Mac, make sure you have accepted the terms on XCode.  You can do this by opening the (should be in your Applications folder).
  • git can fail, complaining about not having an https helper.  If your native git version is > 1.7, you can probably use that rather than the LSST installed git.
  • If all else fails, it's usually an issue with some environment variables interfering with the installation.  You can create a new user  and install the stack there.  You can quickly login/out of a new user account as follows:  First make a new admin-level user in System Preferences->Users and Groups, and then click on your name in the top right hand corner of the screen. A drop-down menu should appear, offering you a choice of other users to log in as. You might have to toggle the check box in System Preferences->Users and Groups->Login Options first though.


WARNING: as of July 2016, the conda binary installation is no longer supported.  We strongly recommend that, if at all possible, you use the "install from source" instructions above.  Installing the conda binary will give you a very out-of-date LSST Simulations stack.  We are working on a new framework for distributing binary installations and will post to the sims-announce category at when that is available.

These installation instructions are very similar to those on the page, but note that we point to a different conda channel. 

1) Install the Anaconda Scientific Python Distribution (or the stripped-down Miniconda, for a quicker install).  

1a) If you didn't just install anaconda or miniconda, or even if you did:

Code Block
conda update conda

2) Add the LSST simulations software channel (note that this is DIFFERENT than the standard 'DM stack' channel! This is because of versioning issues between DM and Sims and is related to simulations having a more frequent release schedule. You can also get an older version of sims from the 'stack' channel). 

Current version of simulations from the sims conda channel is: sims_2.2.6, built against DM lsst_apps v12.0. The version of sims available on the stack channel is v12.0 (equivalent to sims_2.2.5), built against DM lsst_apps v12.0. 

Code Block
conda config --add channels

Note: if you have installed sims conda binaries in the past, you may have an '' channel in your ~/.condarc file. This channel no longer exists and should be removed from your ~/.condarc file. 

3) Install the desired sims and apps packages

Code Block
conda install lsst-apps
conda install lsst-sims

or just a single package .. (e.g. for just MAF)

Code Block
conda install lsst-sims-maf

Then, every time you open a new shell, you can setup the sims packages using the following code. Note that the file `` is in `$ROOT/bin` where `$ROOT` is the conda environment that you installed into or if you did not specifically setup an environment (following the above method) it points to the conda installation. However, the location of the file does not matter, as the `ROOT/bin` directory should be in your path if you are using conda, and then you can launch the following commands from any working directory.

Code Block
setup lsst_sims (or setup sims_maf)

to later update use

Code Block
conda update lsst-sims

Mixing Installed Stack with Development Repositories