Mac Client Release Notes

Download, open the DMG, then double click to install (requires OSX 10.6 or better).  It should select itself as your current screensaver, and also put an icon for the application on the desktop.  If not, open the System Preferences / Desktop & Screensaver and choose "Electric Sheep" from the list on the left.

Release notes for 2.7b36:

- removed support for OSX 10.4, 10.5, PowerPC and 32-bit (!).  ES now needs at least OSX 10.6 on 64-bit processor. The legacy platforms were slowing down the progress and making the code maintainability harder and harder.

- improved full screen behaviour of the standalone application.

- the binaries are now signed with required signature method for OSX 10.9.5 and up. No more security warnings.

- sealed all remaining resistant memory leaks I could find.

Many thanks to Daniel Svoboda for maintaining this client!

If you have trouble, see the help page.

Fixed another bug too

This update seems to have also fixed another bug I had, where the screensaver refused to stay asleep, and would instead wake up and display the login prompt every minute or two.  Yay!

2.7b17 released (Snow Leopard support)

Thanks to our Mac developer Daniel Svoboda.  Release notes:

  • [New] now it runs on 10.6 (Snow Leopard)
  • [New] added 64-bit native version – 10.5 as minimum for Standalone application, 10.6 minimum for Screen Saver for 64-bit
  • [Fix] fixed erratic behaviour of status overlays
  • [Fix] fixed download now supports redirection headers from server
  • [Fix] fixed stuttering and frame tearing seen on some machines
  • [Fix] fixed crash in TextSize function
  • [Fix] fixed some other memory related issues and crashes

Minimum requirements:

Standalone application

32-bit: 10.4.11 (PowerPC, Intel)
64-bit: 10.5 (Intel)

Screen Saver

32-bit: 10.4.11 (PowerPC, Intel)
64-bit: 10.6 (Intel)

  v2.7b16 is released thanks


v2.7b16 is released thanks to dasvo.  changelist is below:


- [New] added standalone application version - installed into /Applications (its installation is optional, gets installed by default)

- [New] delivery format is now disk image (.dmg) with installer on it

- [New] Installer sets the screen saver automatically as active

- [New] Saving password for new user as password_md5 in config file.

- [Fix] Fixed frame tearing issue seen on some computers

- [Fix] Fixed infinite loop caused by corrupted config file in some cases. If config file gets corrupted it is recreated.

- [Fix] Fixed some other minor issues, improving overall stability

Desktop/Screen Saver Pref. Pane Crashes- SOLVED

has to do with Safari beta most likely.

see this thread on fixes.

not a beta problem

folks: please stop the speculation. I suspect you merely have to manually apply the iLife support 9.0.3 without any churning about downgrading browsers, running Onyx or DiskWarrior, or repairing permissions. You might also delete (if you have iLife suite 9.0.3) the ROOT preferences for iLife (not the user preferences) /Library/Preferences/


If you don't like the beta, uninstall;  don't upgrade to the full version (which will be the current version in Snow Leopard) unless you want it.

glad you were able to figure

glad you were able to figure it out, and thanks for posting the solution here.

yeah, the problem is however,

yeah, the problem is however, that an updated Safari is way more important than Electric Sheep. ill be reinstalling Safari 3 to get the panel to work, and removing anything that has to do with electric sheep, and reinstalling safari 4


hope the ES people can figure it out. id like to use the software, but not worth it in my opinion. i can't be hindered by these crashes.


my understanding of that

my understanding of that forum was that this is just a safari beta bug.

new info

I am finding all kinds of new phenomenon as i try to get this fixed.

1) Safari 4.0.2 does not have an uninstaller in the dmg file.

2) apparently you can not reinstall Safari 3 because it states you have 4 already installed.

3) Spaces are severely affected with this problem. when ever the computer crashes with safari and Electricsheep that space is trashed, so if you have spaces running you could try to get to a new space. but without a reboot, you will likely run out of working spaces and need to reboot. each space that has been trashed by the crash has the beach ball running.

4) i have a hot corner set for activating screen saver. you can use this to intentionally trash your space and cause you to reboot. 5) my preferences panel / screen saver still crashes and must force quit. to no avail. 6) you might be able to put the computer to sleep and then awaken it and recover from the "crash" but it still should be said what ever spaces space you crashed in is trashed so you have to be clever and move to a different spaces window. i guess if Safari or EL doesn't fix , we're left to reinstalling Leopard . and that means if i go through all that, it will be the *very last* time I ever have anything to do with electric sheep unfortunately. :(

Mine crashes too. must reboot on black screen of death

I installed Electric Sheep newest version.

now my laptop system preferences / screen saver panel will open and get beach ball until I force quit.  I have hot corners and spaces setup, the hotcorner does NOT run the screen saver any more, infact when the laptop crashes trying to run the screen saver after 15 minutes of inactivity, i must force reboot as the laptop will not wake up.  i have only been able to wake it up by disconnecting the large screen dvi connection, closing the laptop to make it sleep, let it hibernate and open again to wake it up and sometimes it will give me the password screen. funny thing is, when I am able to get it to recover this way, the SPACE (spaces) that was active at that time is black screened, and has a beach ball, but when i hit the hotcorner for spaces i can choose another SPACE that is fine , but as soon as i switch to the previous space, (it is black in the spaces view), it will give me back screen and beach ball. something definitely related to the screen saver electric sheet running, failing, crashing in that space, and trashing the ability to recover that space.


good luck, because now i can not figure out how to  access the screen saver panel to change the screen saver. Electric sheep has essentially left me with no answer to recover my system. i am left to a machine that crashes every 15 minutes without screen activity.




You cannot use the Electric Sheep screen saver on this computer.

I have used this program before and it has worked fine, but when trying to use it on a Mac OS 10.6 (snow leopard) system, the Electric Sheep screen saver is grayed out and when I click I receive this error and I can either move to trash or cancel.  Has anyone else ran into this problem yet?

The screen save doesn't work

The screen save doesn't work on 10.6 yet. There is a new executable model there and I need to check that out.

Timeframe for Snow Leopard version?



I was sad to discover that my recently upgraded Electric Sheep became a casualty of my Snow Leopard install today. Do you have any feel for when there will be a Snow Leopard compatible build? (Not pushing, but if it's going to be real soon now, I'll leave the current one installed so that its "I can't run here" screen reminds me to keep checking back... if it's going to be weeks or months, I'll switch to something else for awhile and not bug you. :-) )



Where did I go right?

Maybe this is an odd sort of question - and I'm sorry it's a bit long - but I actually want to know what I did right, because I want to make sure it doesn't stop.  The screensaver is AMAZING and BEAUTIFUL!  I know *very* little about computers, so most of the things I came across in reading about setting this up I didn't understand.

I'm currently using an Intel iMac, running OSX 10.5.7.  I downloaded and installed the screensaver, and it showed up in my screensavers in System Pref.  When I tested it, I didn't get a message saying anything was being downloaded, just the logo, and a message to register here.

When I did some reading here and there, I saw that I had to somehow make sure I was connected to the server, so that sheep could be downloaded.  There was also mention that the screensaver needed to be running in order to download.  Someone mentioned having the Desktop Pref. - Screensaver window open in Windows, and that that was enough to have the program running while one used the computer.  I thought, okay, I can do that in Mac, if that's needed.  So I opened Syst. Pref. - Screensaver and kept the window sitting open.

I saw the mention of needing BitTorrent, followed the link to Azureus (now Vuze), and downloaded.  And then I realized I had no idea how to use it - never used anything like this stuff before.

So at that point, after having been working on this for a little while - no frustration or anything like that - I decided to set it aside to figure out later, because I had some other things I needed to do.  But in the meantime, I left open the Syst. Pref. window, and Vuze (Azureus) was left running, and I thought, maybe something will happen.

It's been about 5 hours, and voilá!  Not only is the screensaver working, but it's downloaded 114 sheep!!  And, I'm in love.  ^_^

So, I'm not sure having Vuze running did anything, since I didn't *do* anything with it, because I didn't know what I was doing.  Is that right?

What about having the Syst. Pref. window open: do I need to keep that open so that the screensaver is running even while I'm using the computer, in order to keep downloading sheep?

After reading lots of people's comments, I'm grateful this ended up working so smoothly, without having to do much.  Now I just want to make sure it continues, because this screensaver is absolutely amazing, and I *love* the whole concept of this project!

Thank you in advance!  Cheers!

thanks, glad you like it. you

thanks, glad you like it.

you really don't have to do anything to make it work.  vuze was for an old version (but we might bring that back in the future too, right now it's not involved).  you don't have to leave system prefs open either, though that does work if you are using your computer.  you can also just install it and let the screensaver come on, and eventually it will download.  i'm surprised it took 5 hours, i guess the server is getting loaded again.  further optimization is on the agenda... is are clearer instructions.

Thank you for the quick

Thank you for the quick reply!  Much appreciated.

And once again, a lovely project this is, and you and everyone else involved have done a fantastic job.  I'm glad there's people like you in the world.  :)


If your System Preferences |

If your System Preferences | Screen Saver pane is behaving badly, the cause might be a bug in the Migration Assistant, which can be fixed by updating iLife.  See

Unable to connect to server

I have downloaded the new version and really love it. The new Sheep are absolutely awesome!

However, lately I have noticed that there is a message at tho top of the screen saver that states something to the fact "Unable to connect to server. I do not always see this error message, but comes up quite often as of late. Is this just a problem with the server, or is there something else that I need t do.


I have noticed that within the preferences there is the option to enter a server address and password. Is this something I need to do? If so, what is the sever name to enter within this preference?

MacBook Pro 17" intel core duo 3.06 mhz, 500 gig HD, 4 gig RAM

the new version is getting

the new version is getting more popular and the server is starting to get loaded, and sometimes it cannot respond and the client prints that error.  there are various ways we can address that, by making the server more efficient, by prioritizing traffic, and by making the client try a few times before giving up.  it's on the agenda.

one thing we can do is give priority to people who pay for better service.  that's what the login & password is for in the config.  it doesn't work yet but when it does it will be announced by email and on the forum here.

Black Screen of Death

Has anyone resolved the black screen of death? I have been trying to get the new version to work for 4 days now and no luck! 2.93Ghz 24" iMac 10.5.7 new install of OS. Removed old version... Preference pain just sits there beach ball then I have to force quite. If screen saver cuts it its Power button to reboot only!

I have had to also re install iLife Media browser as it seems to have hosed that too! Any bright ideas? I have it running at work on an iMac 2.66Gz 20" 10.5.7 no problems?

Can you tell me what graphics

Can you tell me what graphics card you have? What does it do when you leave it in system preferences, does it crash eventually? Or stays with black preview all the time? Does it at least download something?

How could it hose iLife Media Browser? Please can you be more specific? It doesn't make much sense.


No dual monitor screen saver option

Hi all,

in the new version is not anymore possible to see the screen saver working on both monitors.

there is an option or not?

Thank you!



see here

see here

Request to go to 'Options and select one or more Subscriptions'

All I get is a black screen and that command and there are NO Subscriptions offered under the Options button when Electric Sheep is selected in the Screen Savers Control panel.  So I am without a flock!  HELP!!

no subscriptions are

no subscriptions are required, just let it run.  it may take a couple of minutes to start.

Black Screen

After installing the new Mac version the screen  turns black and there is no way to get out of thai without force reboot. The computer is completely usless until reboot.


I have attempted to let the computer run during the evening and through the night waiting for my first sheep to arive, but nothing.... Must reboot.

I have been using the older version of electric Sheep for years now and love it. I would live to get this version working soon.

Please assist, and thank you

i am having the same problem.

i am having the same problem.  so far nothing.  do my old sheep work with the new upgrade?

What version of the OS do you

What version of the OS do you have and what kind of Mac?  Does pushing the power button exit?  What happens if you bring up the preview in system preferences?

Does the problem persists?

Does the problem persists? Does it happen each time you switch to screen saver? Can you try to open System preferences, choose the Screen Saver and wait with preview open until the first sheep gets downloaded? Just leave the System Preferences window with the small screen saver view on the right open and it should download first sheep for you.

Do you have internet connection working?


all better

i noticed my sheep were working fine today.  not sure what the caused the problem initially, but i think it did need time to download some sheep.


i am running OSX 10.5.7 on a macbook white.

great.  i do think there's a

great.  i do think there's a problem though, you should never get a black screen and it should never have trouble exiting and going back to the desktop.

right now i suspect the sleep mode might trigger it, so to avoid it under system prefs / energy saver, set both sleep settings to "never".

Does just hitting the power

Does just hitting the power button and then clicking cancel get your desktop back?  Did the new version ever work for you?

I wrote up some documentation

I wrote up some documentation of the config file.

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