Way to install programs to not install/work on the admin account?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Passive101, Dec 22, 2008.

  1. Passive101 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2008
    #1
    I use a User account, but have an admin account for if things get messed up in an emergency.

    I notice every program that's installed just about on the user account is available in the admin account. What if a program is causing the issue? Wouldn't the admin account have the possibility of being hosed as well? Is there a way to stop this easily?
     
  2. r.j.s Moderator emeritus

    r.j.s

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2007
    Location:
    Texas
    #2
    Make an applications folder in the user folder.

    Install apps there.
     
  3. wrldwzrd89 macrumors G5

    wrldwzrd89

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2003
    Location:
    Solon, OH
    #3
    Yes, there is a way to do this actually - but it depends on the application's installation method.

    For drag-to-install apps, you can simply install them to the Applications folder in your home folder. If this folder doesn't exist, create it - Mac OS X will assign it the Applications icon automatically.

    For apps that use an installer, you can do the same thing, but only if the installer lets you customize the install location.

    Oh, and don't EVER move Apple's applications out of the global Applications folder (or into subfolders), because this will cause software updates to fail.
     
  4. Passive101 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2008
    #4
    Am I being paranoid? I'm new to macs and come from an Windows environment. I have to repair windows machines now and am quite anal about my personal home computer.
     
  5. wrldwzrd89 macrumors G5

    wrldwzrd89

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2003
    Location:
    Solon, OH
    #5
    I would say that your experiences are completely understandable, and I totally sympathize with people in your situation, since I've fixed Windows machines too, as well as Macs. That said, I also think that your approach to the Mac OS is smart, and will severely limit your exposure level to security holes.

    In short, no - you're not being paranoid. In fact, I've seen recommendations for securing Apple Macs by the very methods you're using.
     
  6. Passive101 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2008
    #6
    So when I double click on my HDD on the desktop. I then click on places in the left hand side which brings up my user account name. I simply make a new folder there called Applications?

    Is there any way to easily tell which programs I can just drag over to it? I understand that the .app are actually folders with the files in them, but I am not sure how to tell which programs required an installer.
     
  7. wrldwzrd89 macrumors G5

    wrldwzrd89

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2003
    Location:
    Solon, OH
    #7
    That is correct, yes.

    As for your second question, there really isn't a way to tell, at least not easily. You could look for installer log files or receipts generated by Apple's Installer - that'll identify anything unsafe to move. Do keep in mind that this approach isn't foolproof, since app installer logs/receipts sometimes have a different name than that of the application. It is for this very reason that I recommend setting something like this up before installing any new applications - i.e. just after you (re-)installed Mac OS X. If you have the installers (or disk images/distribution packages, for drag-to-install applications) identifying the safe ones is a LOT easier.

    That said, here are some general guidelines:
    Apple applications are NEVER safe to move.
    Adobe applications may or may not tolerate being moved - I suggest leaving these alone too.
    Any application that comes in drag-to-install format (example: Adium) is safe.
     
  8. Passive101 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2008
    #8
    I suppose I could simply uninstall them using App Cleaner which is free and I've been told is just as good as other installers.
     
  9. wrldwzrd89 macrumors G5

    wrldwzrd89

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2003
    Location:
    Solon, OH
    #9
    Uninstall then reinstall? Yeah, that will work, for what you're trying to do. Good luck!
     

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