Kindle Previewer v2.923 on Mavericks — Goodbye X11

I begin by prefacing with my disclaimer, “I’m just a print designer.”

Whenever there’s an OS upgrade on the Mac, I’m a little hesitant to jump right into that new upgrade.

Does anyone remember the major OS upgrade from 9 to X, when Power PC apps and peripherals were no longer identifiable by the new X operating system? During that big upgrade, our fancy postscript printer (that cost almost $4000) was obsoleted. Epson never did update that particular driver to accommodate the new X OS. Overnight, one OS upgrade obsoleted millions (if not billions) of dollars worth of software and peripherals, upsetting designers everywhere. Since then, such unexpected surprises are something we’ve gotten used to and read about endlessly on various forums.

In any event, with the recent upgrade of the Kindle Previewer GUI to v2.923, many users have reported, that upon opening the viewer, three X11 windows irritatingly pop up asking what you want to do before the previewer will even open. Essentially, Mavericks obsoleted X11. (X11 is found in Applications > Utilities).

To use the Kindle Previewer without such interruptions, you have to install XQuartz. In the words of its developers, “the XQuartz project is an open-source effort to develop a version of the X Window System that runs on OS X. I’ve included a video by ‘howtechmac’ that explains what X11 is and how to upgrade it to XQuartz, compatible with Mavericks. After installation has finished, you have to shut down and restart to complete the process. Look in your Utilities folder and X11 has miraculously become XQuartz.

Of course, now I have to upgrade to Yosemite.

©2014 Wynne Benti (Originally published at, 11/15/14)

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