8 Replies Latest reply: Mar 21, 2006 7:05 PM by David Gimeno Gost
befuddled4610 Level 1 (0 points)
I am wondering how you install software so that it is usable for all users of an imac. I installed Firefox as the administrator but then when I logged in under my son's name, it was nowhere to be found. I need to install Office for all of us to use as well and I want to make sure I know how to get it onto all our desktops first.

imac g5, Mac OS X (10.4.4)
  • Ferd II Level 7 (25,180 points)

    In order for applications to be available for all users, they must be installed in the Macintosh HD/Applications Folder.

    Is that where you installed Firefox?

  • David Gimeno Gost Level 7 (20,775 points)
    I'm not sure what do you mean here. Applications clearly don't need to be put within the /Applications folder in order for them to be available to all users. Most of them can be placed anywhere you want, as long as that location has read permissions for all users (and I believe even that isn't a requirement if you create aliases for them).

    There are a few (poorly written) exceptions that do require to be put in /Applications or they won't run properly, but Firefox certainly is not one of them.

    You probably meant that the application shouldn't be installed within any particular user's home folder? That I agree with.
  • befuddled4610 Level 1 (0 points)
    I'm not sure I understand. When I downloaded Firefox it appears on my desktop. How do I download it to the HD/applications folder?
  • Ferd II Level 7 (25,180 points)

    In answer to your question, I could have said "should" instead of "must" be installed.

    My advice to the OP was given with the intent of providing a simple effective solution. I try to avoid problems by giving advice that will be understood by the casual user. Not all users will understand permissions and the implications of where applications can, should, or may be installed without compromising functionality. Helter Skelter application installation can be problematic. The fact that the OP is having problems with Firefox is/may be a perfect example.

    Mac OS X: About installing applications says:
    You can install Mac OS X applications in your home or the Applications folder.

    If automatic login is turned off, log in as an administrator to install software in the Applications folder and the Library folder on your Mac OS X disk.

    To make sure an application works properly, install it following the instructions provided with the software.
    According to Dr. Smoke in, Troubleshooting Mac OS X, Tiger Edition:
    "Applications should be installed in one of the following two folders, the choice depending on whom should have access to the application:

    Macintosh HD>Applications folder. Applications installed here are available to all users on you Mac. To install applications here, you must either use an Admin Account or know an Admin user's password.

    Home>Applications folder. Applications installed here are only available to the user who installed them in their own account."
  • Ferd II Level 7 (25,180 points)

    The Firefox application which you downloaded to your Desktop appeared in the form of a Disk Image.

    Open the Disk Image and as you have already noticed, you will find the Firefox application inside a white disk volume.

    Drag the Firefox application out of the white volume and into your Macintosh HD/Applications folder.

    Eject the white disk volume and then trash the Firefox Disk Image.

  • Barney-15E Level 8 (45,270 points)
    When you downloaded Firefox, it downloaded what is called a disk image. Many applications for the Mac are delivered that way. The disk image is a compressed file that the Mac uncompresses and presents as a Disk, just like any other disk.

    With this disk image open, drag the Firefox icon on top of your Applications folder and let go. It will copy to the Applications folder. Now everybody will be able to find it in the Applications folder. As was somewhat alluded to, don't put it in your own home folder Applications folder. The little pictures in the disk image window are meant to indicate that you should drag the Firefox program into the Applications folder. The picture in the middle is showing you what the cursor turns into when you hover over the Applications folder. Thats the "copy" cursor.

    Hope that helps.
  • befuddled4610 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks everyone, I'm quitting for the night, but I'll try this in the am,it sounds pretty clear now.
  • David Gimeno Gost Level 7 (20,775 points)
    I could have said "should" instead of "must"

    Yes, it is the "must" that I disagreed with. I always think of these discussions in terms of all readers interested in the topic at hand and not just the OP. The "must" there could give the impression that the user has less control over the organization of his/her files on disk than he/she really has.