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JohnDoe12

macrumors member
Original poster
Nov 14, 2017
69
51
Does anyone know of a working method to change system icons on Big Sur, and then reenabling SIP after this is done? It seems like the old method of disabling SIP isn't enough since Catalina. See here for more information about the new protections.
 
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Taz Mangus

macrumors 603
Mar 10, 2011
5,438
1,596
Has anyone verified that this actually works?
you have to boot in Recovery Mode, use the command
csrutil authenticated-root disable
to turn cryptographic verification off, then mount the System volume and perform its modifications. To make that bootable again, you have to bless a new snapshot of the volume using a command such as
sudo bless --folder /[mountpath]/System/Library/CoreServices --bootefi --create-snapshot

You can then restart using the new snapshot as your System volume, and without SSV authentication.
 
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JohnDoe12

macrumors member
Original poster
Nov 14, 2017
69
51
This tweet thread says the same thing and was references by an Apple employee I believe.

However, I can't disable root authentication for some reason. It may be because I'm on a 2012 late 13" MBP
[automerge]1593367205[/automerge]
I think I realized why—I need to boot off the Big Sur recovery. Trying that now.
 
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Taz Mangus

macrumors 603
Mar 10, 2011
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Can the icon for an internal drive be changed without needed to do the bless command? Can someone try changing the internal drive icon on the Desktop.
 
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SweetCakeCraft

macrumors newbie
Jul 12, 2020
11
2
Is there any way to change system icons in Big Sur? The old SIP method doesn't seen to work, since they added extra security.... I've tried couple of things, but no success :(
Anyone tried something that worked?
 
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fisherking

macrumors G3
Jul 16, 2010
8,132
2,753
ny somewhere
I'm also wishing that Liteicon will be updated, it seems like the only reasonable thing to work, although very difficult

i've been running mac os since os x 10.2, and i always customize things. for the last few oses, have depended on liteicon. but i see where this may be more complicated in big sur. still... we'll see....
 
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TimothyR734

macrumors 68030
Apr 10, 2018
2,639
2,634
Logsden Oregon
I will try this tomorrow boot into your Big Sur usb installer or Command R make sure SIP is disabled then enter csrutil authenticated-root disable then reboot into Big Sur enter in the terminal sudo mount -uw / ; killall Finder then try replacing the icons by right clicking on the app-get info then clicking the icon on the top left and drawing the new one in it's place
 
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Taz Mangus

macrumors 603
Mar 10, 2011
5,438
1,596
I will try this tomorrow boot into your Big Sur usb installer or Command R make sure SIP is disabled then enter csrutil authenticated-root disable then reboot into Big Sur enter in the terminal sudo mount -uw / ; killall Finder then try replacing the icons by right clicking on the app-get info then clicking the icon on the top left and drawing the new one in it's place

You will also need to regenerate the SSV snapshot.
 
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SweetCakeCraft

macrumors newbie
Jul 12, 2020
11
2
I will try this tomorrow boot into your Big Sur usb installer or Command R make sure SIP is disabled then enter csrutil authenticated-root disable then reboot into Big Sur enter in the terminal sudo mount -uw / ; killall Finder then try replacing the icons by right clicking on the app-get info then clicking the icon on the top left and drawing the new one in it's place
Has this worked for you? In my Mac I can't do sudo mount -uw. It gives an error message: volume could be mounted: permission denied and failed with 66
 
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TimothyR734

macrumors 68030
Apr 10, 2018
2,639
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Logsden Oregon
That means your snapshot volume is sealed I got the same message but there is a way to prevent the snapshot from sealing during install and my late 2012 is not supported because of the wifi card if you decide to do a fresh install these are the steps to prevent the sealing. Phase 1 is the with the Big Sur background proceed as normal after it reboots hold you option button boot into the Big Sur USB installer enter the terminal csrutil disable and reboot back into the BS installer USB then in the terminal enter csrutil authenticated-root disable reboot hold the option button choose macOS install. Phase 2 is the black screen with apple logo and progress bar and time remaining proceed as normal when it reboots hold the option button do not select the macOS install choose whatever you name your BS drive for example mine macOS Big Sur Beta. Phase 3 Black screen apple log and progress bar proceed as normal. Phase 3 this important part grey screen apple logo and progress bar do not let that Progress Bar reach the end !!!!!! A bit past the halfway mark of the progress bar power off your Mac then power on hold the option button choose your BS drive let it finish once in the desktop then try sudo mount -uw / if you don't get the failed with 66 then it worked then once you make you icon changes boot back into you BS usb installer in the terminal csrutil enable reboot then boot back into the BS USB installer in the terminal csrutil authenticated-root enable . I haven't tried the icons yet but got my wifi card to work by replacing the IO80211Family.kext from Catalina with a few additional steps
 
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fisherking

macrumors G3
Jul 16, 2010
8,132
2,753
ny somewhere
That means your snapshot volume is sealed I got the same message but there is a way to prevent the snapshot from sealing during install and my late 2012 is not supported because of the wifi card if you decide to do a fresh install these are the steps to prevent the sealing. Phase 1 is the with the Big Sur background proceed as normal after it reboots hold you option button boot into the Big Sur USB installer enter the terminal csrutil disable and reboot back into the BS installer USB then in the terminal enter csrutil authenticated-root disable reboot hold the option button choose macOS install. Phase 2 is the black screen with apple logo and progress bar and time remaining proceed as normal when it reboots hold the option button do not select the macOS install choose whatever you name your BS drive for example mine macOS Big Sur Beta. Phase 3 Black screen apple log and progress bar proceed as normal. Phase 3 this important part grey screen apple logo and progress bar do not let that Progress Bar reach the end !!!!!! A bit past the halfway mark of the progress bar power off your Mac then power on hold the option button choose your BS drive let it finish once in the desktop then try sudo mount -uw / if you don't get the failed with 66 then it worked then once you make you icon changes boot back into you BS usb installer in the terminal csrutil enable reboot then boot back into the BS USB installer in the terminal csrutil authenticated-root enable . I haven't tried the icons yet but got my wifi card to work by replacing the IO80211Family.kext from Catalina with a few additional steps

woah, please use some paragraphs; that is so hard to read thru.

like this. some separation of ideas; but am gonna try to read it now anyway...
 
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TimothyR734

macrumors 68030
Apr 10, 2018
2,639
2,634
Logsden Oregon
its hard to type on a phone sorry my wpm on a phone is less than 2 words per minute because of spell check interfering. I have to have a dictionary to type to make sure I spell correctly
 
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borp99

macrumors member
Jun 25, 2020
84
82
I'm also wishing that LiteIcon will be updated, it seems like the only reasonable thing to work, although very difficult
After installing BS beta 3 without sealing or snapshots, I changed the SystemVersionCompat.plist (in S/L/CoreServices) from 10.16 to 10.15 (from Catalina, as I couldn't do it from BS single user mode). That allowed LiteIcon 4.1 to launch but it didn't update the folder icons after clearing the cache and logging back in.

I then did 'sudo kmutil install --volume-root /Volumes/11.0 --update-all --force' and 'sudo /Volumes/11.0/usr/sbin/kcditto' after mounting the system as '-uw /' but that didn't help either.

I suspect that the 'IconData_10.15.plist' inside LiteIcon's resources folder doesn't contain the correct file UUID locations for BS use. I did try to manually modify this file to create a new '10.16' version, with updated/added strings in the other internal app files, but that trial app launched with a '-1' error message.

However, getting the unmodified LiteIcon to launch 'may' be one step closer to our goal - until the developer updates the app (I've also sent him an email request but with no reply). I really hate the bright blue system folder icons in all of the recent OS's and have, up until BS, replaced them with the 10.9 versions.
[automerge]1595766576[/automerge]
 
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fisherking

macrumors G3
Jul 16, 2010
8,132
2,753
ny somewhere
After installing BS beta 3 without sealing or snapshots, I changed the SystemVersionCompat.plist (in S/L/CoreServices) from 10.16 to 10.15 (from Catalina, as I couldn't do it from BS single user mode). That allowed LiteIcon 4.1 to launch but it didn't update the folder icons after clearing the cache and logging back in.

I then did 'sudo kmutil install --volume-root /Volumes/11.0 --update-all --force' and 'sudo /Volumes/11.0/usr/sbin/kcditto' after mounting the system as '-uw /' but that didn't help either.

I suspect that the 'IconData_10.15.plist' inside LiteIcon's resources folder doesn't contain the correct file UUID locations for BS use. I did try to manually modify this file to create a new '10.16' version, with updated/added strings in the other internal app files, but that trial app launched with a '-1' error message.

However, getting the unmodified LiteIcon to launch 'may' be one step closer to our goal - until the developer updates the app (I've also sent him an email request but with no reply). I really hate the bright blue system folder icons in all of the recent OS's and have, up until BS, replaced them with the 10.9 versions.
[automerge]1595766576[/automerge]

love that you're trying these things. i've also always changed the default icons (my empty trash icon is NO icon)... so, hoping for a working method in big sur (but to be honest, the world won't end even if i have to look at those cartoon-blue icons). still, will stay optimistic!

Screen Shot 2020-07-26 at 11.08.19 AM.png
Screen Shot 2020-07-26 at 11.08.03 AM.png
 
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borp99

macrumors member
Jun 25, 2020
84
82
love that you're trying these things. i've also always changed the default icons (my empty trash icon is NO icon)... so, hoping for a working method in big sur (but to be honest, the world won't end even if i have to look at those cartoon-blue icons). still, will stay optimistic!

View attachment 937724 View attachment 937725
UPDATE - changing the SystemVersionCompat.plist from 10.16 to 10.15 does allow LiteIcon 4.1 to launch and it *does* in fact change any 'drag and drop' app icons after the auto cache clear and log back in. The trash can icons can be changed as well but not the Finder icon. I didn't test all of the other icon categories, like document files...but the system folder icons (I so wanted to change) *are* in fact replaced by LiteIcon, contrary to my previous posting, but the changes for those currently don't get applied. I'll keep looking for ways to make this work and report back if I find out how.
 
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emoopo

macrumors newbie
Jan 4, 2013
21
5
Germany
Please a small instruction would be great.
How to
[automerge]1595855444[/automerge]
8BBAFC46-B1FF-4F9A-86C1-F5D9BCCF60E9.png

[automerge]1595855484[/automerge]
Please a small instruction would be great.
How to
[automerge]1595855444[/automerge]
8BBAFC46-B1FF-4F9A-86C1-F5D9BCCF60E9.png
My new Big Sur Folder Icons System
 
Last edited:
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Wowfunhappy

macrumors 65816
Mar 12, 2019
1,111
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changed the SystemVersionCompat.plist (in S/L/CoreServices) from 10.16 to 10.15 (from Catalina, as I couldn't do it from BS single user mode). That allowed LiteIcon 4.1 to launch but it didn't update the folder icons after clearing the cache and logging back in.

Just a note, please please please be careful editing SystemVersion.plist. I have had it make apps work that otherwise absolutely would not, but I have also had it royally screw up my system. Lots of built-in software—including from Apple—relies on that number and will do bad things if it's wrong. If you absolutely must modify it, change it back right away.

Maybe SystemVersionCompat.plist is safer, it's possible. I'd still be wary.
 
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borp99

macrumors member
Jun 25, 2020
84
82
In general, I share your concern, but I did only mention the SystemVersionCompat.plist. The main SV.plist remains unaltered at 11.0. Changing the Compat one from 10.16 to 10.15 shouldn’t prevent any 10.16 software from running. The Compat.plist string is essentially (in my mind) a minimum OS number requirement - but in practice not all Catalina software will run on Big Sur as Apple has deprecated the use of many kext extensions (and probably some support file locations too).

The worst that can happen is that any manually added 10.15 software just won’t launch, but the 10.16 software written specifically to be installed by the Big Sur installer will. I was just pointing out that, by experiment, much of LiteIcon 4.1 (written for use up to 10.15) ‘is’ functional with the BS beta 3 OS once the Compat.plist string is changed.
 
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borp99

macrumors member
Jun 25, 2020
84
82
Please a small instruction would be great.
How to
[automerge]1595855444[/automerge]
View attachment 937926
[automerge]1595855484[/automerge]

My new Big Sur Folder Icons System
I am working on compiling instruction but am still failing specifically around replacing System Folder Icons. I’m keeping up with the latest efforts and suggestions over in the Macrumors ‘Big Sur on Unsupported Macs’ forum first and foremost.

I thought a new suggestion for creating a customised BaseSystem.dmg on the install USB stick (which then gets written to the Recovery volume) may work, but Apple has deviously written in an Update Assistant, presumably to run when altered files don’t match the size or checklist that’s expected, so twice during my new install a few hours ago my carefully added (older) System Folder Icons were overwritten without notification by the latest BS ones I was trying to avoid.

The Assistant must connect in the background to Apple to grab back these files, as I made sure I’d deleted every instance of them on the installer up to that point. My modified 924MB BaseSystem.dmg was also automatically replaced by the 884MB original one too. I may try the whole process again later today but without an internet connection to my Mac Pro 2010 and see if my preferred system Icon files and other tweaks get through to the finished OS intact.
 
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