A few DMG/Application questions

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by GovtLawyer, Jun 8, 2009.

  1. GovtLawyer macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2008
    #1
    I have a whole folder of downloaded items which I'd like to empty. Much of that is dmg files. My limited understanding of a dmg file is that its like a PC Zip file and once opened and the application is installed, you can trash it. However, I've had some applications act funny. For example, I downloaded Google Earth and put it on the Dock. Some days later I shut down the machine and when I restarted it, the Google Earth icon was a "?". When I double clicked it, it put the DMG on my desktop as a drive, and I clicked it and clicked on the app again. Now Google Earth seems to stay there, but I'm not sure what I did differently. There were other applications as well where it seemed that each time I closed it, it had to place the dmg file on the desktop before I could open it again. (A few games reacted this way and perhaps some other apps as well.)

    So, what exactly is the dmg file, and the resulting drive icon? How do I know if I can clear my download file of these DMGs?

    I hope my question was clear.

    Thanks,

    Steven
     
  2. i.shaun macrumors 6502a

    i.shaun

    Joined:
    May 1, 2008
    Location:
    Canada
    #2
    DMGs are disk images which are like archives (zip files).

    Once they mount and you copy the app to the "applications" folder, it should install (unless it has an installer package which you then double click from the dmg)

    If you opened an app from the DMG file, and saved that to the dock, it will probably disappear once the DMG is dismounted and trashed. You should always copy them to the applications folder, then open it from there



    edit: the apps appear on the dock when you open them, you just have to make sure they were opened from the app folder, not from the DMG. That is why the apps you have only open when the DMG is mounted, because dock icons are "aliases" or "Shortcuts" pointing to the app -- and if the DMG is not mounted, it's pointing to an invalid path.
     
  3. uberboe macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2009
    #3
    Did you put the app in the application folder before dragging it to the dock?
     
  4. GovtLawyer thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2008
    #5
    DMGs Continued

    Well, all of that makes sense. I'm pretty sure that I opened apps from the dmg files; simply clicked on them, and let them do whatever they were going to do by themselves. In other words, I never thought I had to drag them to the applications folder before opening them; I thought all of that was automatic. So, it makes sense that the a few of the dmg files would have to mount each time.

    It appears clear to me that this question and the two I posted immediately before, have a common thread. I was so jaded by my years of Windows and all of the crap I had to put up with, that I presumed Max/OSX to be so superior that I'd hardly have to do anything; it would run itself. Clearly, it takes a bit more on my part. In any event, its still been a pleasure to work on my Mac each day, despite my few false starts.
     
  5. i.shaun macrumors 6502a

    i.shaun

    Joined:
    May 1, 2008
    Location:
    Canada
    #6
    OS X takes some getting used to, it is a system like any other. That means it too can encounter problems if things aren't done right or ignored. No system is fool proof.


    When you get used to it, it's actually A LOT easier than window's way of Executing an installer, and having to reboot almost every time. Most OS X apps just open a Disk Image (dmg) which is a compact way to store things, similar to Zip archives or RAR files.


    You double-click the dmg, let it mount, then look at the files inside. If it's an application, drag it to the applications folder to install (it will often have a shortcut inside the dmg pointing to the app folder ). If it is an installer, double click to start the install process







    Applications themselves are packages with the application, and resource files it needs all in one bundle. Right click any application and "show package contents" to see what's inside, but don't edit anything unless you know what you're doing.
     
  6. GovtLawyer thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2008
    #7
    Its the dragging it to the applications folder which I never did. I just assumed that you click it and it installs. Obviously, some do and some do not.
     
  7. r.j.s Moderator emeritus

    r.j.s

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2007
    Location:
    Texas
    #8
    Most apps don't even need to be in the Apps folder, you could put them wherever you like, although the Apps folder is easiest, since they will all be in one place.
     
  8. i.shaun macrumors 6502a

    i.shaun

    Joined:
    May 1, 2008
    Location:
    Canada
    #9
    open Finder, and click on "Finder" in the task bar at the top, and "Preferences"

    Go to "Advanced" and check the option for "show all file extensions".


    This way it's easier to tell.

    application.app -- application: Drag to the app folder to install
    application.pkg --package: double click to open, it will probably run an installer.
     

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