OS X CPU temperature

If you want to check the CPU temperature on a Mac OS X system, you can use osx-cpu-temp. To use the software, I downloaded the osx-cpu-temp-master.zip file and unzipped it. It contains the following files:

.gitignore Makefile

To compile the software run the make command from the directory where you unzipped the contents of the zip file. If you see "command not found" then you likely will need to install a C compiler on the system, which doesn't come with OS X by default, in order to compile the program.

$ make
-bash: make: command not found

You can install a C compiler, e.g., gcc, by downloading and installing Xcode.

Once you have a C compiler installed on the system, you can run make and the sudo make install to compile and install the program.

$ make
cc -O2 -Wall -framework IOKit -o osx-cpu-temp smc.c
$ sudo make install
install osx-cpu-temp /usr/local/bin

The program will be installed in /usr/local/bin.

$ which osx-cpu-temp
$ ls -l /usr/local/bin/osx-cpu-temp
-rwxr-xr-x  1 root  wheel  14020 Nov 20 20:33 /usr/local/bin/osx-cpu-temp

You can then run the program by typing osx-cpu-temp at a command line interface (CLI), e.g., a Terminal window. If you run the command with no options, the CPU temperature will be displayed in degrees Celsius. The program recognizes two arguments, -F for degrees Fahrenheit and -C for degrees Celsius.

$ osx-cpu-temp
$ osx-cpu-temp -F
$ osx-cpu-temp -C

I observed the above temperature readings on a MacBook Pro laptop running OS X 10.8.5 when the CPU utilization was extremely high.

If you don't want to install a C compiler and compile the program from the source code yourself, you can download the executable version of the program, which I compiled on my MacBook Pro laptop running OS X 10.8.5, from this server using the link below.


To make the program executable on your system, you can use the command below which sets the permissions on the file so it can be run from any account on the system:

chmod 755 osx-temp-cpu


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Created: Friday November 20, 2015