Open-Source macOS Apps

Table of Contents

macOS & Me

I started using macOS over a year ago, as I wrote about in macOS: Testing Out A New OS.

Over the last year, I have tried out numerous proprietary and FOSS applications and command-line utilities. Throughout this process, I have ended up with a mostly-FOSS lineup of applications.

Before I switch back to Linux in a few weeks, I wanted to pause and save this snapshot of how I was using macOS in 2022.

Read on to see the applications I regularly use, both FOSS and proprietary.

macOS App Drawer

Open-Source macOS Apps

Browsers

Firefox

A self-explanatory browser choice - my default choice most of the time.

Firefox

LibreWolf

A more secure alternative browser to Firefox.

LibreWolf

Lagrange

A graphical browser for the Gemini protocol.

Lagrange

Utilities

Mullvad VPN

My personal choice of VPN, supporting both OpenVPN and Wiregaurd configurations.

Mullvad

Itsycal

A small calendar in the menu bar, which gives me great flexibility when needing to see days of the week or future dates.

Itsycal

CopyQ

A simple clipboard history manager, available in the menu bar.

CopyQ

iTerm2

The only logical choice for a terminal on macOS, iTerm2 is phenomenal.

iTerm2

Stats

A collection of statistics available in the menu bar that display data regarding the device CPU, GPU, storage, network, etc.

Stats

IDE

VSCodium

VSCodium is a slimmed-down version of Microsoft's VSCode and has all of the telemetry removed. I enjoy using this IDE simply due to its massive number of add-ons available.

VSCodium

Kate

Kate is a simple text editor that allows for quick and easy editing.

Kate

Media

Transmission

A drop-dead simple torrent client.

Transmission

FileBot

While FileBot is no longer open-source, it used to be and there is a fork of the most recent source code linked above. This app is incredibly helpful for automatically renaming movies and TV shows using custom templates.

FileBot

Plex

Plex is self-explanatory: a simple desktop client to stream content from your Plex server or from one of Plex's services.

Plex

NetNewsWire

A beautiful RSS feed reader. I use this client on macOS and iOS, using my FreshRSS server.

NetNewsWire

Files & Cloud Storage

pCloud

pCloud is my current cloud provider choice. I bounce around cloud providers quite a lot, but iCloud was syncing incredibly slowly lately and caused me to migrate over to pCloud.

pCloud

Cryptomator

For all files saved within a cloud provider, I suggest using Cryptomator to encrypt your files locally before they ever touch the provider's servers. This is one of the only ways to ensure that a third party isn't able to touch or read your personal data.

Cryptomator

GPG Tools

GPG Tools is the easiest way I've found to manage GPG keys on macOS. This tool allows me to painlessly encrypt emails, decrypt emails, and sign my git commits.

GPG Tools

Gramps

Gramps is a classic genealogy tool, allowing for editing, exporting, and visualization of GEDCOM genealogy data.

Gramps

Messaging

Element (Matrix)

Element is the official client for the Matrix messaging protocol. I've tried a handful of clients and haven't found anything as good as Element yet.

Element

Signal

Signal is another self-explanatory one. This is the desktop companion app that syncs with the mobile app.

Signal

Command-Line Tools

amfora

amfora is a command-line browser for the Gemini protocol.

amfora

exiftool

exiftool is an excellent image editing tool for the command-line. I wrote a blog post about it recently: Stripping Image Metadata with exiftool.

sudo exiftool -r -all= -ext jpg -ext png /path/to/images

ffmpeg

Used to extract audio from the yt-dlp program.

neofetch

neofetch

yt-dlp

A simple command-line utility to extract audio and video files from video hosting websites.

For example, to extract a video as a .flac audio file:

yt-dlp -x --audio-format=flac -o "%(title)s.%(ext)s" https://example.com/video

Zola

Zola is a static-site generator, used to build this website.

zola

Proprietary macOS Apps

Media

Meta

Meta is an excellent tag editor for musical files. While the base app costs $5 and the auto-finder + image selector costs an additional $5, this tool is excellent and easy to use. I was able to re-tag a ton of artists and albums with Meta in no time at all.

Meta

Pictogram

Pictogram is a simple icon replacement app for macOS. If you have irregular icons in your app drawer or dock, this app is a great tool to replace those icons. Personally, I used this tool by downloading icons from macOS Icons and saving them in an icons folder to be re-used later.

Pictogram

Utilities

Little Snitch

Little Snitch is a powerful firewall that can set detailed rules on allowing and denying connections per application, URL, or domain. The app has a ton of information dialogs that can visualize where the requests are coming from or going to.

Little Snitch

Little Snitch

Micro Snitch

Micro Snitch, made by the same company as Little Snitch, is a small tool to notify you whenever a program on the computer is using your microphone or camera.

Micro Snitch