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  • Alexander Santos Level 2 (460 points)
    I haven't read all the responses but I did want to leave a note up here concerning one particular issue.

    A friend of mine called me with a problem he was having and this is related.

    Disk Utility was unable to see his hard drive nor any other utility. The reality is he was running cocktail while running a software update and cocktail recommend a restart at some point. I am unclear of the status of where software update was on its' cycle. In any case, he did restart via cocktail and the mac went into a long beach-ball spin.

    He manually restarted and from that point on the internal HD was no longer visible.

    Thought I would mention because there are user end issues Apple should be made aware of.

    I promise to come back later when I have a moment to read the responses I got and will reply accordingly.
  • Alexander Santos Level 2 (460 points)
    Thank you David for interjecting and giving us some pointers on the topic of magic rituals versus expert advice. I tend to agree with what you said and it was well said.

    I would like to make a quick comment if I may but before I do I would like to clearly state that I was not trying to be insulting and I apologize for any misunderstanding.

    With that said, RickV and Kalus1 refer back to 10.3 in the doc files regarding repair permissions. I did read it through and there are good points in the article,. I appreciate the point but it does not answer the issue in my opinion.

    I have a few questions for us to chew on.

    1) Does the installer actually repair permissions on its own after the install?

    2) Has anyone actually taken the advice by David Gimeno Gost, who left a post on page 6 of this thread? His post summarizes using an external to correct permission.


    Klaus1, I have not been able to find "It’s a good idea to repair disk permissions as a regular maintenance task after upgrading or installing new software." in Mac Help nor in other support articles.

    What query did you use that took you to that quote in 10.4.x Mac Help?
    note: Googling the quote did yield this link which I have yet to read, I am posting it here for posterity's sake.

    Do you have a link to a support article concerning the quote specifically related to 10.4.x?

    My quick two cents.

    Hopefully Apple will introduce installers (10.5.x) that check permissions after install, if it is an issue, on its' own.

    Secondly, the system should repair permissions on its' own, if it does not pose some risk, security or otherwise. There is no reason why it can not be done from a technical stand point but there may be other issues I am unaware of that keeps Apple from instigating such a measure.

    Sorry to have replied to you directly David Gimeno Gost but some of this was a reply to Klaus and RickyV.
  • Klaus1 Level 8 (47,755 points)
    Thank you Gulliver.

    But clearly opinions differ about the benefits, or otherwise, of repairing permissions at regular intervals!
  • Alan Somers Level 6 (9,345 points)
    The thing is, the installer runs with administrative privileges and AFAIK doesn’t care what the permissions of the files currently there actually are.

    That's true for the ownership aspect of permissions, but it could have an adverse impact if some files have the wrong read/write/execute permissions, e.g. a critical executable file doesn't have its execute bit set or a critical data file is set to write-only.
  • AxL Level 6 (11,435 points)

    Hi Gulliver,

    "It's a good idea to repair disk permissions as a regular maintenance task after upgrading or installing new software."


    Before, makes no sense at all.

    Why you don't agree with David and others who rightly point this nonsense of doing it before, is beyond me.
    Even as an egoistic way to manage to make your point, you would be more efficient at it if you were able to think twice about your assertions.
    They have also a good point when mentioning misleading troubleshooting startpoints.

    How you play it now
    (and have many times in the past, also about the old (now fixed) Help Problem sticky post for example)
    seems to have nothing to do with purely technical advising,
    and everything to do with childish will to have the last word, even if wrong.

    Please note that no, it's not only Total Points or sum of accepted User Tips that make an AD member more trustable.
    I too was supporting Gulliver when I was "young", only to understand later that,
    his methods are quite safe and advises quite good,
    but there are other approaches that are as valuable as his,
    and sometimes where doesn't perspire any kind of "too personal" involvment.

    A safe Update to you all happy Mac users!

  • Alexander Santos Level 2 (460 points)
    thanks for the link Gulliver.
  • SteveLamb0 Level 5 (4,110 points)
    Hi Axl

    Quote: "It's a good idea to repair disk permissions as a regular maintenance task after upgrading or installing new software."

    Nice piece of selective quoting, did you read the bit before what you posted? Or did that not suit your argument.

    Maybe the reason most of us don't agree with you is that your , & David's, views are in the minority. Also I agree with Gulliver, and the majority, due ti personal experience.
    With the 10.4.9 update, for the first time ever, I did not repair permissions before updating. I ended up having the Starting Mac OS X screen for 30 to 45mins with no sign of end. In the end, I forced shutdown, using power button, & restarted. Luckily I got the desktop, I immediately donloaded, & ran, the Combo update.

    Also, since repairing permissions before updating does no harm, according to David (selective quote below, yes I can do it too), why are you & David so opposed to doing it?

    Quote David Gost: "And just to be clear, it’s not repairing permissions as part of regular maintenance tasks, be it after installing a system update or not, that I’m saying is wrong or useless."

    You believe what you want to believe but please don't force your minority view on the rest of us.

  • Alexander Santos Level 2 (460 points)
    Hi all

    I encourage those interested in this is issue to read the following August 04 2006 macworld article:

    Repairing permissions: What you need to know
    What repairing permissions does and whether you should do it
    By Dan Frakes

    It's a rather in depth look at the question and I thought I would post it here since there seems to be a lot of heated debate here in the rink concerning this matter.

    I will also present a snippet related to the context at hand. It answers the question of whether repairing before and/or after updates is worthwhile and why it is or is not worthwhile.

    "Do I need to repair permissions before installing an update to Mac OS X?

    In a word, no. When you install a Mac OS X update, you’re required to authenticate—provide an admin-level username and password—in order for the installation to proceed. When you authenticate, you’re allowing the installer to run with the equivalent of root access. What this means is that the installer is not constrained by Mac OS X’s permissions system—it ignores the normal restrictions of file and folder permissions. This is necessary for Installer to be able to update Mac OS X, but, more important for the current discussion, it also means that “incorrect” permissions shouldn’t cause problems with the installation.

    The only real benefit to repairing permissions before a Mac OS X update is that if you do so, then immediately install the update, and then repair permissions again immediately afterwards, you can be pretty confident that any permissions issues that are found are a result of the update. But at that point you’ve also fixed the problem(s), so the pre-install “repair” provided you with little more than academic knowledge."

    This, from the article may also be of interest.

    "Given that Apple recommends repairing permissions after updating Mac OS X, why doesn’t Apple’s Installer do it automatically?

    I asked Apple that very question; the company declined to comment. For what it’s worth, repairing permissions isn’t the only procedure to fall into this category; there are many other useful procedures and processes Mac OS X doesn’t automatically perform. For example, it’s a good idea to periodically check your hard drive for problems, and Apple recommends doing so; although Mac OS X could easily perform this task on a weekly basis, it doesn’t."

    Personally I haven't read the article in full yet but I think we all should be informed considering the circumstance and folks, I know these debates get heated and we all like to take the trophy home but let's be nice to one another. We are all in the same boat.

    Anyway, I hope this helps and again, I encourage people who are interested to at least skim the article.

    INMHO it looks more and more like this is an issue Apple will have to contend with in some form or other.
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