Skip navigation

Should I repair permissions before or after updating to Mac OS X 10.7.2?

1865 Views 8 Replies Latest reply: Oct 15, 2011 5:40 AM by vea1083 RSS
vea1083 Level 3 Level 3 (685 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Oct 14, 2011 10:02 AM



Should I repair permissions before or after updating to Mac OS X 10.7.2? or should I fix permissions before and after the update?

2.53GHz Core i5 MacBook Pro 15, Mac OS X (10.7), 500GB HD @7200, 4GB 1067MHz DDR3 RAM, Intel HD + Nvidia 330m 256
  • Kappy Level 10 Level 10 (220,950 points)

    Before and after.

  • Niel Level 10 Level 10 (234,255 points)




  • macjack Level 9 Level 9 (50,445 points)

    After the install. Repairing permissions before install accomplishes nothing since they will change on the install.


    EDIT: Hmm... I don't know what Niel is answering "No" to?

    Also, Repairing Permissions can never do any harm, it may only be redundant.


    Message was edited by: macjack

  • woodmeister50 Level 4 Level 4 (3,690 points)

    Do a repair disk before is a good idea.  Broken directory

    structures can cause a headache with an update.

    If you want to be really careful, do a surface scan as well

    to find bad blocks and repair before.


    Actually, best thing, repair permissions/disk then clone

    the current install before updating.

  • Niel Level 10 Level 10 (234,255 points)

    Because it is something that should only be done when troubleshooting and not as routine maintenance. Since the installer runs as root, permission problems are essentially ignored and won't impede the installer. Furthermore, running it more than once per incident is also a waste of time. Using Repair Disk may be worthwhile; installing onto a drive which already has disk structure issues may cause more problems.



  • Kappy Level 10 Level 10 (220,950 points)

    This is not a routine maintenance. Upgrades can be screwed up if the system that is upgraded is screwed up. I believe in a "better safe than sorry" approach. If you repair permissions and the hard drive prior to an upgrade then if there be a problem perhaps that problem will not propagate to the new upgraded system. If there are no problems doing the repairs is harmless.


    When it comes to the topic of permissions repairs there are many opinions but not much fact. In other words there doesn't appear to be a formal analysis of whether repairing permissions is only useful when a permissions problem arises. But there is a lot of anecdotal evidence suggesting that a repair both before and after a major system upgrade can reduce the risk of problems.


    This is my opinion on the matter. I do not generally disagree with Niel or MacJack, but as I said I prefer to be safe rather than sorry.


    Here's my general approach:


    How to Install Lion Successfully - You must have Snow Leopard 10.6.7 or 10.6.8 Installed


    A. Repair the Hard Drive and Permissions:


    Boot from your Snow Leopard Installer disc. After the installer loads select your language and click on the Continue button. Then select Disk Utility from the Utilities. After DU loads select your hard drive entry (mfgr.'s ID and drive size) from the the left side list.  In the DU status area you will see an entry for the S.M.A.R.T. status of the hard drive.  If it does not say "Verified" then the hard drive is failing or failed. (SMART status is not reported on external Firewire or USB drives.) If the drive is "Verified" then select your OS X volume from the list on the left (sub-entry below the drive entry,) click on the First Aid tab, then click on the Repair Disk button. If DU reports any errors that have been fixed, then re-run Repair Disk until no errors are reported. If no errors are reported click on the Repair Permissions button. Wait until the operation completes, then quit DU and return to the installer. Now restart normally. 


    If DU reports errors it cannot fix, then you will need Disk Warrior (4.3.) if DW cannot fix the drive, then you will need to reformat the drive and reinstall Snow Leopard.


    B. Make a Bootable Backup Using Restore Option of Disk Utility:


    1. Open Disk Utility from the Utilities folder.
    2. Select the destination volume from the left side list.
    3. Click on the Restore tab in the DU main window.
    4. Check the box labeled Erase destination.
    5. Select the destination volume from the left side list and drag it to the Destination entry field.
    6. Select the source volume from the left side list and drag it to the Source entry field.
    7. Double-check you got it right, then click on the Restore button.

    Destination means the backup volume. Source means the internal startup volume.


    C. Important: Please read before installing:


    1. If you have a FireWire hard drive connected, disconnect it before installing the update unless you will boot from this drive and install the update on it. Reconnect it and turn it back on after installation is complete and you've restarted.
    2. You may experience unexpected results if you have installed third-party system software modifications, or if you have modified the operating system through other means. (This does not apply to normal application software installation.)
    3. The installation process should not be interrupted. If a power outage or other interruption occurs during installation, use the standalone installer (see below) from Apple Downloads to update.  While the installation is in progress do not use the computer.


    D. To upgrade to Lion:


    1. Purchase the Lion Installer from the Mac App Store. The download will start quickly. Lion is nearly 4 GBs so a fast internet connection is essential. Download time could run upwards of 4 hours depending upon network conditions and server demands at the time.
    2. Boot From The Lion Installer which is located in your Applications folder.
    3. Follow instructions for installation.
  • woodmeister50 Level 4 Level 4 (3,690 points)

    Good approach Kappy.  Pretty much I do.  The only exception is

    that with OS upgrade or any major OS update, I disconnect

    everything except keyboard and mouse (including any mounted

    network volumes).  You never know when some very low level

    service request from/to a device could cause an "anomoly" in

    the update/ugrade process.


More Like This

  • Retrieving data ...

Bookmarked By (0)


  • This solved my question - 10 points
  • This helped me - 5 points
This site contains user submitted content, comments and opinions and is for informational purposes only. Apple disclaims any and all liability for the acts, omissions and conduct of any third parties in connection with or related to your use of the site. All postings and use of the content on this site are subject to the Apple Support Communities Terms of Use.