Cleaning up problems with NMAP on Mac OS X

NMAP, security softwareLet us first make one point crystal clear – every person on the planet running the Apple Mac OS X operating system must have the finest open source network security scanner, NMAP, installed on their machine. The previous statement isn’t entirely true, but I’m inclined to plug exceptional work. And NMAP is exceptional work. As well as available for most operating systems too.

If you don’t know what the program does, just run along right now. But if you’ve been using this impeccable chunk of code, and are now having problems getting it running (say after updating to Snow Leopard and/or updating NMAP itself), read on.

I was having this problem, and a few simple steps solved it. With the latest version, 5.50, I did the following to get the GUI interface running again:

1) Unhide your otherwise hidden files. If you don’t know how to do this, it is once again time to move on.

2) Under /usr/local/bin/ delete ncat, ndiff, nmap, and nping.

3) Under /usr/local/share/ delete the ncat and nmap directories.

4) Under /Applications delete the Zenmap application icon.

5) Empty your trash. If you don’t know how to empty your trash, skidoodle out of here (after tossing your Mac out of the port side window of a boat floating over the Mariana Trench).

6) Open the latest download of NMAP (i.e. the dmg file) and run the executable.

If you’ve cleaned up properly, you can now click on the Zenmap icon and run NMAP just fine.

Or at least performing the above worked for me.

MG signing off (to figure out what this NMAP thing does)


Matt says:

This does not work for Mac OS X Lion.

Correct. The 10.7 version of NMAP is still in beta as far as I know.

Cyril says:

Mid october and still no Zenmap for Lion 🙁

Yea, but the contributors do great work, so I am sure it’ll be worth the wait.

Mike Pirotte says:

Tried this twice still doesn’t work

NMAP isn’t compiling right on Lion, last I heard.

morth says:

And it’s 2012 and Zenmap still doesn’t work. Might as well switch back to Linux. §#$%!

Randall Hernández says:

Hi everyone, check the official page of zenmap you will find that there is a beta version that works fine in MAC OS X Lion, check the link:
I’m testing the beta and works fine.

Confirmed – 5.61TEST4 does in fact work. Thanks for the heads up Randall!

packetcrafter says:

Thanks for the article. I had the beta but could not get zenmap to launch. I do not use zenmap really but the fact that it would not launch bothered me to no end.

Hector Alarcon says:

If you all install all the current Apple updates for Lion and the latest Xcode (4.3) from APP Store then remove with Micheal Gracie’s procedure any trace of an old NMAP installation and then download the latest NMAP build which is currently NMAP 6.00 for mac os x (lion) compatible then the zenmap will work..
I just did that and it worked.

Sri says:

great Thank you dude.. this steps worked for me on mountain lion..

Bela says:

Thanks a bunch!
This just worked on Mountain Lion! 🙂

Janne Östling says:

Great advice and instructions! Thx! /janoz

Anon says:

Worked perfectly in mountain lion! just follow what Hector Alarcon says in his post since it’s a little more up to date. NMAP 6.25 was the latest I pulled down and installed. Thank you.

Roland says:

Thanks a lot! Wonderful article. Nmap works with mountain lion.

You are welcome. NMAP rocks, so thanks should additionally be conveyed to its contributors. Have fun.

NOTE TO READERS: As of today, NMAP 6.40 Zenmap GUI is not loading properly on Mavericks. While the cleanup process, which should now include the nmap-update file, still does it’s specified job, you will need to compile NMAP from source until a new version arrives.

UPDATE 11/12/13: Working again. Download the nmap-6.40-2.dmg update from here.

b@sh says:

OS X 10.9.2
XQuartz 2.7.5
zen map 6.46

fails silently in GUI.
run from command line, looks like so:
# python
/Applications/ DeprecationWarning: BaseException.message has been deprecated as of Python 2.6
Could not import the zenmapGUI.App module: ‘dlopen(/Applications/, 2): Library not loaded: /Users/david/macports-10.5/lib/libffi.5.dylib\n Referenced from: /Applications/\n Reason: image not found’.
I checked in these directories:
If you installed Zenmap in another directory, you may have to add the
modules directory to the PYTHONPATH environment variable.

vinicius says:

I was having a problem loading Zenmap on Yosemite, even after reinstalling (it crashed after typing the root password). The only thing that solved for me was deleting the “/Users/MyUser/.zenmap” and “/Users/MyUser/.zenmap-etc” folders.

Nukolator says:

I’m having the same issue on Yosemite, but it doesn’t seem to be creating ~/.zenmap folder at all. I have deleted and reinstalled numerous times, still no joy 🙁

vinicius says:

make sure Finder is showing hidden files, or, if you’re using the Terminal, use the “ls -a” option to list hidden files

and if I remember correctly the folders were from an old installation

John Newton says:

I have just installed and run this under High Sierra. It seems to open two copies each time it runs.

Also, it will not quit. I have to use Force Quit from within Activity Monitor.

Version 7.6 i.e. latest? I have not upgraded to HS, but have it running fine on Sierra. I would clean everything out as suggested here then check to make sure your XQuartz is updated before reinstalling.

MacGuy says:

I am on High Sierra and trying to install nmap version 7.70. It’s not fully installing as when I open Zenmap it closes immediately.

I have tried to remove Zenmap before the installation and changed the security settings to allow the package installer to do it’s work.

I recently upgraded to HS. Just cleaned everything out NMAP-wise, including the nmap-update file (not listed above), and installed 7.70 without issue. All I can suggest is to make sure you’ve cleared all the files before installation.

Shibumi says:

You are godsend my fellow namp enthusiast. Your instructions have saved me countless hours of staring into the nothingness trying to figure this mess out!

Here are the steps I took and should have taken to resolve this issue for me.

1. Luckily I found your blog on this topic and read about your trails and tribulations with zenmap
2. Downloaded and installed quartz –
3. Logged out then back in
4. Still not working
5. Deleted files based on the first post on this topic – Don’t be a dummy like I and do this first!
6. Installed Zenmap v7.7
7. Zenmap worked!

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