Chapter 2: Getting and Installing Xcode
Xcode is free and runs on any recent Intel Mac. However, hobby developers and professionals have different hardware and software requirements. A system tuned for maximum productivity may be very different from one used for experimentation or hobby coding.
Selecting a Mac for Xcode
If you own an Intel Core 2 Duo Mac, you can run Xcode on it. But you will get more from your Mac if you understand the differences between a streamlined and productive working environment, and a slow and informal one.
Choosing a processor
Surprisingly, processors have less influence on productivity than other factors. A faster processor can speed up compilation times, but unless you’re working on industrial projects with hundreds or thousands of source files, you’ll find little obvious benefit to running Xcode on a high-speed multi-core Mac Pro.
Xcode compiles incrementally, which means that only updated files and their dependencies are recompiled after an edit. iPhone projects compile relatively quickly, even on a Mac mini. The initial build of an OS X project takes longer, but subsequent builds happen more quickly.
Smaller projects are practical on relatively old and slow hardware, and any of the Macs shown in Figure 2.1 will work for you. However, you need more powerful hardware if you are developing large, complex games.