Sublime Forum

Update_installer on Mojave asks for password


I’m usually reluctant to provide this level of unlimited access (at least from my perspective, since there is no way for me to see what changes the installer intends to do), is this really necessary?

If I skip this prompt, I get the following error

Unable to set owner on /Users/[username]/Library/Application Support/Sublime Merge/Update

Would it be possible to design this process in a way that does not require administrator privileges?




The update installer does four things:

  1. Set the uid and gid on the new version of Sublime Merge to match the old one
  2. Rename Sublime to a temporary name
  3. Rename the new version of Sublime Merge to Sublime
  4. Move the old version of Sublime Merge to the trash.

It first tries to do these operations without any special privileges, but if that fails, it tries again with admin privileges, which necessitates the prompt.

You could fiddle with file system permissions such that it doesn’t need to request admin privileges in the future, but I wouldn’t recommend it.

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I am not familiar with the common patterns to update mac apps (or whether there is a usual / preferred way at all :slight_smile: , those steps sound good to me. I was surprised since I never had to enter a password (as far as I recall) for the sublime editor updates, for example.

If the installer could use another approach to avoid this would be great for suspicious users like me, but the attempt of performing those operations without admin privileges first and then prompting for them seems also reasonable.

For what is worth, I removed the application and installed it again, then waited for another update, and this time it managed to perform the upgrade without asking, not sure why. May be I had some uncommon setup to start with somehow.

Thank you for your reply!



For some reason this has started happening to me this morning where it never used to ask for the admin password. Has something changed in a recent release? I’m currently using version build 1114 (and have it installed in my "Users/<username>/..." folder. On work machines that are locked down (i.e. have no admin rights), this now makes it impossible to upgrade without raising a ticket to our help desk which is a bit of a pain.

I should add that I own the folder "/Users/<username>/Library/Application Support/Sublime Merge/Update" i.e. I can delete it, move it etc without admin privilege. That’s why I’m puzzled as to why it it doesn’t work first time, as you mention, without admin privilege.



If only I read fsainz’s post properly - uninstall and reinstall fixes this issue.