I would like to use a wired Xbox 360 controller to play Portal on a Mac. I tried following the steps as explained in the Steam Support article “Using an XBox 360 Controller with Source Games.”

So I:

  • Installed the driver from tattiebogle.net (v0.10).
  • Checked that the controller works with the “Xbox 360 Controllers” pane in System Preferences (a.k.a. “Pref360Control”).
  • Started Portal, enabled the developer console.
  • Opened the developer console and submitted “exec 360controller”.

But the game still doesn't respond to the controller. Is there any step I missed or something else I need to do?

I'm running Snow Leopard (10.6.8).

2 Answers 2


I don't have a perfect answer to your problem, but if you don't find anything, try checking out ControllerMate : http://atmac.org/controllermate. This will let you remap anything (in this case, your keyboard's controls) to your controller, and you can choose for which app it will be activated. Not the perfect solution, but it may work out well...


Half-Life 2: Episode 2, Portal, Team Fortress 2, and Left 4 Dead have their own built-in configuration for the XBOX 360 controller. To use this configuration, simply open the console and type exec 360controller then press enter. For more information on enabling and using the console, please see the Console article.

These games use special joystick interface configurations that may interfere with the usability of the keyboard and mouse - if you wish to undo these configuration changes, there is a second configuration file you may run by opening the console and typing exec undo360controller then pressing enter.

If you wish to customize the configuration, or use one of these configurations with Half-Life 2 or Half-Life 2: Episode One, you will need to create your own copy in a text editor (such as Notepad) modifying the default settings below and save it as something different (such as joystick.cfg), then place it in the \cfg\ folder inside the game's directory, which uses the following basic structure:


Windows PCs: \Steam\ is located in C:\Program Files\ by default.

Mac OS X: /Steam/ is located in ~/Library/Application Support/ by default.

The configuration file's contents are offered below for use in Half-Life 2 and Half-Life 2: Episode One, or for customization purposes; game-specific configurations are noted and should be left out when using in a different game. Please see the Configuring a Joystick or Gamepad for Source article for customization information.

//Joystick configuration for XBOX 360 controllers
joy_name "Xbox360 controller"
joy_advanced 1
joy_advaxisx 3
joy_advaxisy 1
joy_advaxisz 0
joy_advaxisr 2
joy_advaxisu 4
joy_advaxisv 0
joy_forwardsensitivity -1
joy_sidesensitivity 1
joy_pitchsensitivity 1.0
joy_yawsensitivity -1.25
joy_autoaimdampenrange 0.85
joy_autoaimdampen 0.5
joy_lowend 0.65
joy_lowmap 0.15
joy_accelscale 1.4
joy_response_move 5
joy_response_look 1
crosshair 0
hud_draw_fixed_reticle 1


//Half-Life 2 and Episodes, Portal specific settings
bind "Z AXIS POS" "+attack2"
bind "Z AXIS NEG" "+attack"

bind "JOY1" "+jump"
bind "JOY2" "+reload"
bind "JOY3" "+use"
bind "JOY4" "impulse 100"

bind "JOY5" "+speed"
bind "JOY6" "phys_swap"

bind "JOY7" "impulse 50"

bind "JOY10" "+zoom"
bind "JOY9" "toggle_duck"

bind "JOY8" "pause"

bind "POV_UP" "slot1"
bind "POV_RIGHT" "slot2"
bind "POV_DOWN" "slot3"
bind "POV_LEFT" "slot4"

joystick 1
sk_autoaim_mode 2
hud_fastswitch 2

player_limit_jump_speed 0

All presented in this Steam article.

  • 1
    Thanks. But this just seems like a copy/paste of the Steam Support article I already linked to in my question? I've listed the steps that I took to try to get it to work. Is there anything in the article that I missed?
    – Rinzwind
    Commented Mar 17, 2012 at 11:30

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .