If you are a Mac power user and probably a software engineer you will have Homebrew installed on your machine. In case that you don't know what Homebrew is, you can find more information here and you can read how to install it here. Basically, Homebrew is the missing package manager for Mac OS X and can be used to install additional unix packages. Is a tool that can really help you install almost anything and it can manage dependencies and update packages with just one command.

So here are the 10 best Homebrew packages for Mac:

  1. Wget

Wget is a command line tool that can download files over HTTP, HTTPS, FTP and FTPS. Is a non command line interactive tool and can be used within bash scripts, cron jobs and terminals.

How to install it:

brew install wget

2. Htop

Htop is a top alternative which can provide additional information through the terminal about CPU usage, available memory, system uptime, running services and also the ability to kill running processes.

htop command line interface

You can download and install it from the official website, but is much easier to do it from Homebrew by just typing in your terminal:

brew install htop and you can use it by typing htop after the installation.

3. Youtube-dl

Youtube-dl is a command line program that lets you download YouTube videos and sound. It can also, download content from a couple of other websites as well. You can use it by typing

youtube-dl -f best 'youtube-link'

This will enable you to download the best available video quality that YouTube has. Although, is against YouTube's terms and conditions is a really useful program that can help you download videos that you have uploaded to YouTube but you don't have them on your local machine anymore. You can download youtube-dl using Homebrew as shown below:

brew install youtube-dl

4. Ripgrep

Ripgrep is a command line tool that can search recursively your current directory. It can be used with a regex pattern and it can also respect your gitignore rules. Ripgrep is available for Mac OS X, Linux and Windows. You can download the binaries here or you can download it using Homebrew as shown below.

brew install ripgrep

5. Imagemagick

Imagemagisk has many capabilities when comes to converting images from one format to another and it can also do some basic image editing like flip, rotate, mirror, etc. The creators of Imagemagisk have also took into consideration the performance. Imagemagisk utilises multiple threads so it can do multiple I/O operations really fast. To install it you can do:

brew install imagemagisk

Extensive API documentation and the full capabilities of Imagemagisk can be found here.

6. Vim

Vim is the famous, highly configurable and somewhat controversial text editor you can use. It has an extensive variety of plugins and in my opinion if you invest some time to configure it properly and learn all the commands you will be writing a lot faster that using a text editor with a UI. It has support for hundreds of programming languages and it comes in every UNIX system. However, if you would like to get the latest version easily you should install it via Homebrew. A really nice website that will help you to learn VIM is called VIM Adventures. You will learn the basic commands by playing a game which is an interesting way of learning the tool.

brew install vim

For Apple computers there is a really good guide of how to configure it properly. It can be found here.

7. Zsh

Z shell is another shell, like for example bash (default on Macs). Zsh provides additional functionality and when it's used with a framework it can be really powerful and can help your productivity. Zsh comes with Mac OS X, however is outdated and usually you don't get frequent updates. That is why is better to install it via brew.

brew install zsh

The framework I recommend using with Zsh is called Oh my Zsh. I will show my Zsh + iTerm2 setup in a future post. Zsh has really good plugins and beautiful themes. I always keep finding myself looking for nice themes every couple of months just to change the look of my terminal.

8. Unrar

Everybody knows unrar. This is the command line version of the famous package unarchiver. It has full support for RAR and ZIP files. Some of the formats it can decompress are GZIP, ACE, CAB along with many more. Installation:

brew install unrar

9. Parallel

Parallel is a command line app that can concurrently execute multiple jobs in your local environment or remotely. A typical use case is to have a script that you would like to run many times. It can take as an input multiple hosts, users, urls or files. You can install it by executing:

brew install parallel

You can check the video below of how you can use it.

10. Speedtest-cli

As its name suggests this is a tool for doing speed tests on your internet connection. Basically is the command line version of the website Speedtest.net.

brew install speedtest-cli

And that is all folks, if you have any other useful Homebrew tools that you would like to see here please contact me directly. Don't forget to share this if you find it helpful and don't forget to subscribe.