Is .app just a folder

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by QueenZ, Jan 5, 2009.

  1. QueenZ macrumors 6502

    QueenZ

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2008
    #1
    I mean technically.. Is .app just a folder? At least that's how Windows an Linux handles it.. How can it be that when i open a folder it runs application?
    This is so confusing..
     
  2. VPrime macrumors 68000

    VPrime

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2008
    Location:
    London Ontario
    #2
    Yep.
    Inside the .app "folder" is an executable which launches...
    I am new to macs/OSX.. but I think the executable is located inside the contents\MacOS folder.

    Though the launching is handled where you cant see, so you dont need to worry ;)
     
  3. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2004
    Location:
    Montreal, QC
    #3
    Yeah, .app is just a folder. Mac OS X has a number of "files" that are actually directories in disguise; this includes .pages and .pkg. You can remove the extension and they'll turn back into folders.

    How? It's what's inside that counts, baby. ;)
     
  4. motulist macrumors 68040

    motulist

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2003
    #4
    You don't even need to do that, you can just control click on an application and select "Show Contents of Package", but there's basically no reason to ever do that. I don't understand what you're confused about? In other words, how did you even come to suspect that apps are actually folders since it's so super seamless looking to end users?
     
  5. johto macrumors 6502

    johto

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #5
    The way OSX uses apps as "packages" (folder) is pure gold. This is why normal apps work in what ever location, every file for that application moves with it when you simple move the "icon". So elegant, compared to a windows / linux when you hunt dependencies or missing components :)

    Basicly a whole application is behaving like in Windows a single .exe app but has physical directory structure for its resources You could maybe imagine .app as a "non archived dynamic packaged .exe" ..or maybe not :p
     
  6. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2004
    Location:
    Montreal, QC
    #6
    Yeah, it would be pretty neat to go through my Windows Program Files folder, renaming each subdirectory to .app and having them magically turn into programs.

    I do love OS X's implementation. And plists? Awesome.
     
  7. QueenZ thread starter macrumors 6502

    QueenZ

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2008
    #7
    oh.. i didn't know about .pages and .pkg ;)
     

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