Intro to Objective-C, Pre-Lesson A: Downloading Xcode

[Just joining us? The tutorial begins HERE.]

For this tutorial, we will be working in Xcode. Xcode is Apple’s IDE (Integrated Development Environment), and is where we will be doing all of our programming.� If you do not want to, or cannot, install Xcode, you will be very much at a loss.� It is possible to learn the Objective-C language without Xcode, but in order to create apps you will need the Interface Builder, which now comes bundled with Xcode.

I’ll be working with Xcode 4.2, on a Mac running OS 10.6.8 (Snow Leopard). The version of Xcode that you will use is dependent upon what type of machine you have at hand, and what OS you’re running.

On a Mac, to see what OS you’re running:

  • Click the Apple icon at the top corner of your screen
  • Click “About this Mac”
  • Read the Version number. This is the version of your OS.

If you are running Version 10.7 (aka Lion), you are running the most up-to-date Mac OS and can therefor download Xcode 4.2.1 in the Mac App Store. If you are running Snow Leopard or earlier, you will need to download an earlier version of Xcode. (Note: I will include a link to an earlier install soon!)

If you are on a machine running Windows, you will need to set up a virtual Mac environment on your computer to run Xcode. Apple has a very “closed box” policy, and generally does not support non-Apple software. You’re on your own for this one, although a quick search led me to this tutorial and this tutorial, which you may find helpful.

NOTE: Apple Developers must be licensed before they may submit their apps to the App Store. The Apple Developer’s License costs $99/year, but is ONLY NECESSARY if you are VERY SERIOUS about app development. You can learn everything I’m going to teach you in this tutorial without the license. Xcode has a device simulator that you can use free of charge. The license enables you to download your apps to a physical device (like your own personal iPhone/iPod/iPad), and to submit your app to the App Store for sale. It also gives you access to extended resources. In my opinion, you should not purchase a Dev License until you’re sure you’ll need it.

Creative Commons License
Intro to Objective-C Tutorial by Michelle Leonhart is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at

NEXT LESSON: Pre-Lesson B: C Programming