Getting to Aquamacs on M1/Apple Silicon

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Win Treese

Jan 30, 2021, 3:21:15 PM1/30/21

I don’t have an M1 system myself yet, but I know some people are running Aquamacs under Rosetta on M1 systems. If anyone is interested in getting Aquamacs running natively on M1, we have an open issue about it on Github at

I just posted an outline of the most obvious things that need to be done there, and we can use that issue for any discussion about it.

For quick reference without having to look there, here’s what I wrote:

Here's an outline of the things I know need to be done for having Aquamacs native on M1/Apple Silicon. I don't have an M1 system to work with yet. I'm happy to work with anyone who wants to tackle any of it.

For Aquamacs on M1 as a separate distribution:

• Look into what's been done for other Emacs distributions on M1.
• See if Aquamacs will build and run for individual use on an M1 system, without including gnutls. (This is somewhat limited, because you can't install packages this way, although you might be able to copy over the files from an x86 setup).
• See if gnutls and its package dependencies now works on M1. Better yet, have it building via Homebrew. There may be some other dependencies we end up needing, but that's the big one.
For Aquamacs on M1 as a universal binary (which would be nice, but not essential to start):

• Figure out how to tweak the Aquamacs build for this
• Figure out how to build gnutls, etc., as libraries in universal form (which I assume is theoretically possible, but I haven't looked into that)

There are probably some things I haven't though of yet.

I may eventually get to this, but I’m currently occupied with the rest of the issue backlog and other work that needs to be done. In the meantime, any help is appreciated!



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