How do I prevent apps being run from Downloads folder?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by mr1970, Jan 28, 2011.

  1. mr1970 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2008
    #1
    My 13 year old got a MBP for his Christmas to replace his Hackintosh. It mainly gets used for GarageBand & ProTools as he's in a band. He has, however, taken to Torrenting apps that he hasn't bought - Logic Pro etc - which I've told him I'm not going to let him do because a) there's enough on his machine to do what he needs and b) we have a home network and I'm not having him introduce a virus or malware onto it.

    I've put on Parental Controls and specified the apps he can use, but as far as I can tell OS X only allows me to stop him running installed apps (i.e. ones in the Apps folder) - it doesn't seem to stop him running things directly from Downloads.

    Any ideas? Any terminal magic I can run to stop him running things from Downloads?
     
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #2
    None that I'm aware of. Color me old fashioned, but I come from an era when if I disobeyed my parents, my computer (if they were in existence back then) would have been taken away from me. I guess technology isn't a good substitute for parenting.
     
  3. tjb1 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2010
    Location:
    Pennsylvania, USA
    #3
    He is downloading illegally and the most you are worried about is a virus? Depending on your ISP and where he is getting these programs you could be tracked by the ISP or someone else. Software is not as bad as music but they still track it depending on where you are getting it from.
     
  4. mstrze macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2009
    #4
    Is he installing these apps? Apps that you run without having to provide a root password first are most likely harmless to the system...so while you may not want him to run other apps, the system won't get screwed-up. If he is installing these apps, you have another issue with allowing him to have the system password to allow installation.

    Heck, I feel like a 13yo here at work...I can't even install Google Earth without approval!

    But I echo all of the previous comments about misbehavior consequences, torrenting, pirating and the like.
     
  5. MisterMe macrumors G4

    MisterMe

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2002
    Location:
    USA
    #5
    Remove the privileges his account that allows him to install new applications.
     
  6. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #6
    He's running them from the Downloads folder, as the OP said.
     
  7. yetanotherdave macrumors 68000

    yetanotherdave

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2007
    Location:
    Bristol, England
    #7
    Ask a technical question, get judgemental parenting advice... :rolleyes:

    I'm not at my mac right now, but I think switching him to the simple finder will stop him getting at the downloaded folder? I seem to it remember asking for a admin password for anything outside of the specifically allowed activities.
     
  8. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #8
    I didn't judge and I didn't offer the OP any parenting advice. I just related how it was when I was growing up.
    He could still access downloaded files from Safari's Downloads window, and no password is required to run downloaded apps that aren't installed in the Applications folder.
     
  9. hughcanbefound macrumors newbie

    hughcanbefound

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2008
    #9
    While I unfortunately can't answer your question directly, I must tell you that your kid will always outsmart you when it comes to computers.

    Hell when I was thirteen and was still sharing a desktop running XP with my parents, they told me no more because I spent too much time on Messenger. They put passwords on user accounts etc etc. Got around all of that and used the computer when they were out of the house.

    However hard you fight, you will always be outfoxed on the technology side of things.
     
  10. mr1970 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2008
    #10
    Ah, that might be a good idea - I'll try it, thanks. Parental Controls are already set so he doesn't have admin rights, can't use it past bedtime etc.

    As for the earlier parenting advice, his mother died the week before Christmas, so I'm trying to manage this issue as carefully as I can. I have quite enough on my plate without going to war with him and taking his computer away.
     
  11. mr1970 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2008
    #11
    :)

    I'm quite sure you're right; however as I've been an IT consultant for 20 years I'm putting this one in the same category as golf - he hasn't beaten me YET....!
     
  12. yetanotherdave macrumors 68000

    yetanotherdave

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2007
    Location:
    Bristol, England
    #12
    If that was directed at me, I'd be pissed at the implication that I was offloading my parenting responsibilities onto a computer! At least that's how I read that.

    My 5 year old will probably find a way round any barrier I put in his way, I will of course tell him how to use a computer safely and legally, but naturally I will also back this up with safeguards to try and prevent him from doing illegal things. But this is a kid, who, at age 2, learnt how to get into my iPod touch by watching me put the pin in! I've got an uphill struggle!

    Like I said, Im' not at my mac right now, but I know it's a total PITA to do pretty much anything when simple finder is turned on and apps are whitelisted.
     
  13. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #13
    I'm sorry to hear about that. Understand, I wasn't offering advice on what you should do. I only stated how it was when I was young. I wasn't suggesting that you do the same. It's up to each parent to decide what's best for their kids.
    Then you read it wrong. I'm not responsible for your misinterpretation of my statement.
     
  14. hughcanbefound macrumors newbie

    hughcanbefound

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2008
    #14
    Wow I'm very sorry to hear that...

    Be sure to let us know when he does though. I remember when my dad found out I had been able to do what I wanted (including seeing emails between him and teachers!). Sort of violated but not because of the family element.

    Best of luck mate :D.

    EDIT: Just had an idea. If you're sure he's just torrenting pirated software you could set up a firewall rule to block the common bittorrent port range. Sure if he's tech-savvy enough he'll get past that with a breeze but if he doesn't and asks if there's anything up with the internet you can just say the ISPs are getting cleverer and cleverer!
     

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