UPDATE: Run ffmpeg On Mac Without Compiling Anything

This is going to be a update to a post I did a few days ago, “Run ffmpeg On Mac Without Compiling Anything”. I did get some good and skeptic response. They solution I posted does indeed work, but it’s a very old binary and you don’t get ffplay, ffserver etc. And a nice fella posted a comment telling me just that, and I appreciate that :)

This time instead of downloading any install file, I want you to download a 7zip file which contains all of the necessary binaries.

  1. Download and extract the Mac package from here: http://ffmpeg.arrozcru.org/autobuilds/
  2. cd into the package and then into “bin”
  3. Type sudo cp * /usr/share/bin (NOT /bin)
  4. Type ffmpeg in the terminal to see if it works

Again, if you have any problems, type the following and try again:

sudo chown root:wheel /usr/local/bin/ff*
sudo chmod 755 /usr/local/bin/ff*

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    Lovable, friendly and crazy 25-year-old-boy.

    • Anja


      is this something someone without any background in programming/Sudo etc. can do…? Or should I rather avoid messing with the command level? What I’d want it for is converting videos under Firefox Downloadhelper on my Mac which doesn’t work because no conversion programme is found, or so the machine tells me.


      • admin

        I would love to help you Anja, but I cannot for the life of me understand what you are saying.

    • Anja

      Lol, sorry. Must be because I have no background in programming. What I was trying to say was that I can’t use the download-helper-extension on my Firefox (Mac OS 10.4.11) because it tells me that “no conversion programme is found”. So I’ve been looking around and found several people recommending ffmpeg. Eventually I ended up on your site where you explain how to run ffmpeg. However, I’m not sure if I should (or indeed can) mess with the sudo-command-level of my Mac, never having done anything of the kind. So my question is if you think I can follow the instructions above without jeopardizing my machine?

      • admin

        Like with all of the Unix based OS:s, you will need “super user” rights (sudo) in order to install software. It is not only true for the command line, but also general GUI software too. I have never been able to jepordize my machine by installing binaries this way, but i’m not sure how things will turn out in 10.4.11. It’s your call.