Moving the location of an entire application...

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by tsice19, Apr 18, 2008.

  1. tsice19 macrumors 6502a


    Feb 16, 2008
    I'm new to Macs, and I was trying to understand how the applications install.

    When an application installs, what exactly happens? Does it install preferences and stuff in different locations or do that apps run like a *.exe would on a PC?

    If it runs just like a *.exe, could I install apps anywhere I want (not the applications folder) or move them into a different location or computer?

    I know with Windows everything seems to go through the registry but this seems non existent. Since I'm a recent switcher to Mac, but am used to Windows, I want to know the platform inside and out. Frivolous info to know, just interesting.

    Thanks in advance for helping this geek learn his computer,
  2. shwc macrumors regular

    Jul 2, 2005
    You can install the applications anywhere as the binaries and support files are within the application. An application is actually special type of folder (right click on the application and select "show package contents" to see the files that make up the application). When you first launch an application a preference file is created and stored in ~/Library/preferences. Some applications will also generate files that are stored in ~/Library/Application Support and or /Library/Application Support. To uninstall an application, drag the application into the trash and empty the trash. Trashing the application does not get rid of the preference file or any files in Application Support. However, the preference files are small and do not pose any problems if left behind.

    Caution: if you do not store your applications in the Application folder, update scripts (of some applications) may not be able to find the application.

    For more on installing applications see installation guide

Share This Page