How to Open Mac Apps From Unidentified Developers

Joel Lee 13-07-2016

Even though you can grab a lot of great apps right from the App Store, every Mac user eventually runs into some software that simply isn’t available there — and when that happens, you have no choice but to install said app manually.


Which can be problematic because the operating system won’t let you run apps that comes from unidentified developers. This is meant to protect you from malware and other forms of trickery:


The good news is that this problem actually has a very simple workaround. You don’t have to install any special tools or change any system settings.

Instead of launching the app by double-clicking on it, right-click on it and select Open. Doing this will show a similar kind of warning as before, except this one gives you the option to allow the app to run anyway:



The nice thing is that it also tells you when and where the file came from, which can help you differentiate between apps you’ve downloaded and apps that came from elsewhere.

Clicking Open runs the app and you’ll never have to do this again. In the future, you can just double-click and it will run as intended.

Did this help? Let us know below! Also, if you have any other Mac tips or tricks, please share them with us. We’d love to hear from you.

Related topics: Mac App Store, Troubleshooting.

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  1. Anonymous
    July 13, 2016 at 2:04 pm

    Why would anyone bypass built-in security checks and expose themselves to software of questionable provenance that probably contains malware?!

    • Miki75
      July 13, 2016 at 3:32 pm

      Let's say by installing an app downloaded from the Internet other than from developer's webpage?

    • Joel Lee
      July 13, 2016 at 8:56 pm

      Without doing this, the only software available to you is what you can find in the App Store, and I think every Mac user can agree that the pickings are slim there. The reason why the warning exists is that you have to explicitly grant permission for every app you install, similar to UAC in Windows.