Installing Lynx on Mac – a text-only browser

“Content is the baseline, design is an enhancement” : Paul Robert Lloyd : Responsive Conf 2013


Following Paul’s (@paulrobertlloyd) session at Responsive Conf I was really curious to try out Lynx, which is a text-only browser. I was intrigued with looking at the world from such a limiting perspective, and the notion of viewing the web with no design-overlay really resonated with me:

Google on Lynx:

Google on Lynx

Installing Lynx is straight forward enough, but is a little more involved than usual, so I thought I’d share my simple steps to installing Lynx on Mac:

[Update: Paul shared the following even easier option to direct download a .dmg to install Lynxlet:]


1) Install Xcode (From App Store)

2) Install MacPorts : download the .pkg from:

Use Terminal to confirm installed ok:

$ port

MacPorts 2.1.3, Entering interactive mode…

I then used the Terminal and tried:

3) $ sudo port install lynx

Which gave me the following response:

‘org.macports.configure returned configure failure’

but reading the rest of the output it also included

Warning: The Command Line Tools for Xcode don’t appear to be installed;

4) install Xcode command line tools.

Open Xcode, and move to the ‘downloads’ section, and it’s simple to install the Xcode command line tools:

Xcode command line tools

Then re-tried

3) $sudo port install lynx

Which was this time successful, meaning I can browse sites as text-only via the terminal by typing:




Lynx: Responsive Conf Site

Footnote/Hat tip: I was initially pointed at this approach This approach based on the comments here (from ’06):