SPSS for Macintosh


SPSS is statistical analysis software and is controlled via a license manager.  Our license includes the SPSS Base Package, plus SPSS Advanced Statistics and Regression packages and is available to active faculty, staff, and students for academic research and/or teaching, rather than for management and/or administration. You must be on the campus network or VPN to use the network license.  The current release is 28, which runs on MacOS 10.13 to MacOS 14.   Older versions are available at rcweb.dartmouth.edu/downloads/spss/.  There is also a version compatibility table for older OS releases.

Installing SPSS for Macintosh

  1. Download 28.0-IM-S28STATC-Mac-MD001-FP001.pkg
    • To download the file, right-button click (Control-click) on the file and select Download linked file (Safari) or Save Link As (Firefox and Chrome)
  2.  Locate the file you just downloaded.
    • Control-click  SPSS_Statistics_Clit_28.0.1.0_Mac.pkg to start the installation, and select Open from the menu which appears.
    • Take all the default options offered.
    • When installation finishes, the IBM SPSS Statistics window should open.
  3. Before starting the software, you need to connect to the Dartmouth network - use "eduroam" WiFi or wired network on-campus, or use VPN if you are off campus. 
  4. Double-click to launch SPSS Statistics.
    • The Activate IBM SPSS Statistics window should open if this is your first installation. Click Launch License WizardSPSS Activation Screen
    • The initial screen will likely report "No licenses found..." Click Next
      SPSS License Status screen
    • On the Product Authorization screen, select "Concurrent user license" and click Next.
      SPSS Product Authorization screen
    • On the License Manager screen, enter spsslicense.dartmouth.edu in the "License manager server name or IP address" field. Click Next.
      SPSS License Manager screen
    • The software will contact the license server and you should be shown the Licensing Completed screen. Click Finish.
      SPSS Licensing Complete screen

Patching SPSS 27 or 28 for MacOS 14.x "Sonoma"

SPSS 27 and the initial release of 28 require a patch to work on MacOS 14.

  1. Make sure you are not running SPSS software.
  2. Download and unzip the file.
  3. Inside the unzipped folder, locate the libplatdep.dylib file.
  4. Locate the SPSS Statistics application, likely at Applications/IBM SPSS Statistics/SPSS Statistics. Right-click the application and choose "Show Package Contents."
  5. Open the Contents folder then the lib folder.
  6. Drag the newly downloaded libplatdep.dylib file into the lib folder. When prompted about an existing version of the file, choose to Replace the file. Authenticate to your computer if necessary.
  7. Close the open folder. You should now be able to open SPSS on your MacOS 14.x computer.

Running SPSS

  1. Before running the software, you need to connect to the Dartmouth network - use "eduroam" WiFi or wired network on-campus, or use VPN if you are off campus. 
  2. To run SPSS, you will find the SPSS Statistics program located in the Applications folder under IBM SPSS Statistics -> SPSS Statistics.
  3. Local copies of the documentation (PDF) are available.  The help menu in the application takes you to the same documentation online at IBM via web browser.
  4. Please inform our SPSS license manager, John Wallace, of the installation at john.wallace@dartmouth.edu

MacOS 10.15 (Catalina) and later: possible issues

With MacOS 10.15, Apple introduced tighter security.  Two features affect SPSS versions prior to 26.  SPSS 26 and later are already set to avoid these potential issues.

  • Applications may not use files in the special folders Documents, Downloads, or Desktop, or on externally connected drives, without explicit permission.  The workaround is to keep your SPSS programs and data in some other folder.  You can also select System Preferences: Security and Privacy: Privacy: Full Disk Access and add SPSSStatistics to the list of permitted apps.  The SPSS installers will eventually be modified to request this permission at install time.
  • The installer is delivered as a DMG file (mountable disk image) or a PKG (package installer).  These are now flagged as quarantined unless certified by Apple (like packages in the App Store).  Future SPSS installers will be certified.  If you get an error message that the installer cannot be verified or something similar, the fix is to manually remove the quarantine attribute from the DMG file.
  1. Start Terminal (found in Applications/Utilities)
  2. Type the xattr command as in the example below.  This assumes you downloaded the file to your Downloads folder.
  3. Press return.  Now you can mount the .dmg file and/or run the installer.
xattr -d com.apple.quarantine ~/Downloads/26.0-IM-S26STATC-Mac-FP002.pkg

If you currently have SPSS 26 or earlier installed and plan to upgrade your Mac to Big Sur (MacOS 11.x), you should upgrade SPSS to the latest version, or at minimum SPSS  The updated SPSS 26 is available at https://rcweb.dartmouth.edu/downloads/spss/SPSS-26/Mac/

Additional SPSS features

If you wish to license additional SPSS features, you may want to check out the premium pack  at www.studica.com/ You can purchase this on your own, effectively purchasing a new license key that you will own for the 12 month term you purchase it.

For statistics questions when you use SPSS, contact jianjun.hua@dartmouth.edu


Article ID: 64623
Tue 10/9/18 12:18 PM
Sun 1/21/24 11:10 PM

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