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Context-aware computing for Mac OS X.

There is a MarcoPolo discussion group available if you have any problems, questions or comments.
You can also directly email me any criticism, adoration and comments!

NOTE: Sadly, I have not had time to maintain MarcoPolo for the last few years, and it is becoming less functional. For instance, the WiFi evidence source does not work on Snow Leopard or Lion. Much of it still works, but you should consider this software as unsupported.
You might like ControlPlane, which is a maintained fork of MarcoPolo.

What is it?

MarcoPolo brings context-aware computing to your portable Mac computer. It allows your computer to determine its context through gathering evidence from your environment (evidence sources), using flexible rule-based fuzzy matching to make an educated guess (rules), and then performing arbitrary actions upon changing context (actions).

MarcoPolo's concept of contexts is a generalisation of a location, and encompasses more than just where your computer is. A context might represent what you are doing, or what else is going on around you.

MarcoPolo quietly stays in the status bar at the top of your screen (right-hand side of the menu bar), from where it can be configured to your own needs.


Comparison with similar programs

MarcoPolo Network
Location X
Detects Bluetooth Yes No No
Detects Bonjour Yes No No
Detects FireWire Yes Yes No
Detects IPs Yes No No
Detects Power Yes No No
Detects USB Yes No No
Detects WiFi (AirPort) Yes Yes Yes
Detects Ethernet cable Yes Yes No
Uses fuzzy matching Yes No No
Actions Lots Lots Lots
Cost Free $25 $20

Other related programs that may be useful are LocationChanger (and another LocationChanger), Home and Away, Location Checker, Locations Pro, and Locamatic.

What you need

There are known issues with Snow Leopard:

There is a patched version contributed by a user that is said to fix the WiFi problems above; download it from the link in the discussion group thread.

Bug Reports and Feature Requests

Post to the MarcoPolo discussion group if you have any kind of question or problem that you think we could help you with.


I strongly recommend against linking directly to the DMG, since I periodically delete old versions. (If you're after an old version, get it from the Git repository.)


MarcoPolo is released under the terms of the GNU GPL (version 3). That means it is free to use, share and modify, as long as you pass those same permissions along if you redistribute.

Make payments with PayPal - it's fast, free and secure!

Though MarcoPolo is free to use, share and modify, and will remain so, I welcome donations to encourage me to keep developing it. I have put a lot of time and effort into developing this. You might also consider buying me something off my Amazon Wish List. Many thanks to those generous people who have already done this!

David Symonds <>