Create a Foundation Command Line Tool in Xcode

This topic describes the steps needed to configure an Objective-C++ console application in Xcode.

Create the Xcode project

  1. Create a new Command Line Tool project in Xcode. Name the project 'SimpleConverter', select 'Foundation' for type.
  2. Rename main.m to
  3. Select the 'SimpleConverter' project in Xcode, and then the 'Build Settigns' tab:
    • Set the C++ Language Dialect to C++11[-std=c++11]
    • Set the Build Products Path to $(PROJECT_DIR)
  4. Download the 64 bit version of AVBlocks for C++ (Mac). The file you need will have a name similar to AVBlocks.1.14.0.Demo.dmg except for the version number which may be different.
  5. Mount the dmg, copy the tgz archive and extract it in a location of your choice, then copy the include and lib directories to the Xcode project directory.
  6. Add 'AVBlocks.h', 'PrimoReference++.h', and 'PrimoUString.h' to 'SimpleConverter-Prefix.pch':
//  Prefix header
//  The contents of this file are implicitly included at the beginning of every source file.

#ifdef __OBJC__
    #import <Foundation/Foundation.h>

// the main AVBlocks header
#include "../include/AVBlocks.h"

// needed for C++11 features
#include "../include/PrimoReference++.h"

// needed for string conversion
#include "../include/PrimoUString.h"
  1. In Xcode, select the 'SimpleConverter' target, and then the 'Build Phases' tab:
    • Expand the 'Link Binary with Libraries' section
    • Add the libAVBlocks.dylib from the lib directory.
  2. Restart Xcode!!! Otherwise it will not pick the new Build Products Path
  3. Build the project ( ⌘B )
  4. Copy the file libAVBlocks.dylib from lib to Debug.
  5. Replace the contents of '' with this code:
//  SimpleConverter
//  Copyright (c) 2014 Primo Software. All rights reserved.

using namespace primo;
using namespace primo::codecs;
using namespace primo::avblocks;

int main(int argc, const char * argv[])
    @autoreleasepool {


        auto inputFile = primo::ustring(L"AAP.m4v");
        auto outputFile = primo::ustring(L"AAP.mp4");

        auto inputInfo = primo::make_ref(Library::createMediaInfo());

        if (inputInfo->load()) {
            auto inputSocket = primo::make_ref(Library::createMediaSocket(inputInfo.get()));
            auto outputSocket = primo::make_ref(Library::createMediaSocket(Preset::iPad_H264_720p));

            auto transcoder = primo::make_ref(Library::createTranscoder());

            if (transcoder->open()) {


    return 0;

Run the application

  1. Download the AAP.m4v HD movie from the Internet Archive and save it in the Debug directory.
  2. Run the application in Xcode. Wait for the Transcoder to finish - it will take a few minutes. The converted file AAP.mp4 will be in the Debug directory.


  • You may get dyld: Library not loaded: @executable_path/libAVBlocks.dylib or a similar message. To fix this, copy the file 'libAVBlocks.dylib' from lib to Debug.
  • transcoder->open() may fail if there is already a file AAP.mp4 in the Debug directory. Delete AAP.mp4 to solve this.

Last updated on April 8th, 2017 02:55:54 PM