Beginning Mac Programming by Tim Isted - Xcode 4 Information

Beginning Mac Programming is aimed at beginning developers without prior programming experience. It takes you through concrete, working examples, giving you the core concepts and principles of Mac OS X development in context.

Working with Xcode 3

The current print edition of the book describes Xcode 3. Apple released Xcode 4 to the public in March 2011, but it is still possible to download Xcode 3 in order to follow the instructions exactly as given in the book. And, because Xcode 4 is a major revision that is still very new, it can (understandably) be a little unstable at times. You may prefer to use Xcode 3 while learning the basics of Objective-C and Cocoa, then move on to Xcode 4 when the occasional crash won’t be so frustrating.

Note that if you are running Mac OS X Lion, you won’t be able to install Xcode 3 using the normal method. It is possible to install Xcode 3 on Lion, but you’ll need to make a few modifications as described at

To download Xcode 3, visit At the bottom right of the page is a “Looking for Xcode 3?” link; you’ll need to log-in with a developer account (a free account is fine) before you can begin the download. Once the download completes, you’ll be able to follow the instructions in Appendix B to install Xcode.

Working with Xcode 4

If you’d prefer to jump straight in and use Xcode 4 right now, it’s available either via the Mac App Store (free, but App Store version only works on Mac OS X Lion) or as a free download from for Mac OS X Snow Leopard.

Xcode is a large, multi-gigabyte download. Downloading from the Mac App Store has the benefit of update notifications; downloading from the web requires that you register for a developer account (free, or $99 annually to be able to sell your software via either the Mac or iOS App Store—see more info at

If you’re downloading from the web, you’re looking for the “Xcode 4.0.2 for Snow Leopard” download, a .dmg disk image. The installation instructions as given in Appendix B still apply.

There are a number of changes in Xcode 4, though none of these changes make anything in the book impossible. You’ll probably be able to work out the differences for yourself, but if you run into any problems, this site includes a general overview of moving from Xcode 3 to 4, as well as a list of chapter-by-chapter differences to read alongside the book (posts for Chapters 6+ on their way). These posts are mainly screenshots—the chapter changes are relatively minimal.