I try to have only one Xcode installed at a time for simplicity and tidiness. But such a setup is rare as we often must manage stable releases and beta versions simultaneously.

I know some folks often have multiple stable versions of Xcode installed at any given time. Ain’t nobody got time for that. I keep two Xcode installs at most — the latest stable release and the latest beta (if any). During and after WWDC, when we have a new major (beta) version of Xcode, I find I need to switch more frequently as the betas break in different ways or I otherwise need to use the latest stable release.

Using plain xcode-select is slow because you have to provide the path to the Xcode you want to select each time. I wrote a custom shell command to switch between Xcodes more quickly.

# switch between release and beta xcodes
function xcswitch() {

    CURRENT=$(xcode-select -p)

    if [[ "$CURRENT" =~ "$RELEASE" ]]

    sudo xcode-select -s "/Applications/$NEXT"
    echo "Switched to $NEXT"

It checks your current Xcode selection, then switches to the other one. This makes some assumptions, namely that you only ever have two Xcodes installed like me — Xcode.app and Xcode-beta.app. It also assumes they are installed in /Applications. This should work as-is for most folks, but you can tweak it for your needs.

If you find this useful, you can copy it to your .bash_profile or .zprofile and invoke it by calling xcswitch.

Update 22 August 2021

You can make this even better by following Keith Smiley’s tip to switch Xcode versions without a password.