Repair Disk Permissions in OS X

repair disk permissions in snow leopard

Repair Disk Permissions in OS X? Yes, it’s true, Mac computers do occasionally need some general maintenance. While Macs do not suffer from file fragmentation as often as a Windows computer, the hard drive will still eventually need some attention if you want your Mac to continue running at peak performance. One such maintenance task is verifying and repairing disk permissions.

Why Repair Disk Permissions in OS X

Most applications you install in Mac OS X are installed from package files ( .pkg). Each time something is installed from a .pkg file, a “Bill of Materials” file ( .bom) is stored in the package’s receipt file, which is located in the /Library/Receipts/ directory. The .bom files contain a list of the files installed by that package, and the proper permissions for each file. The Disk Permissions utility compares its list to the actual permissions on each file listed. If the permissions differ from each other, the Disk Utility reports that difference and corrects them.

To Begin, click Go in the file menu and then select Utilities. Next, click Disk Utility.

Repair Disk Permissions in OS X
Repair Disk Permissions in OS X


In the left panel, choose your main hard drive and then either select Verify Disk Permissions to check the status of the permissions or choose Repair Disk Permissions to go ahead and fix the permissions. The scan and repair could take quite a while depending on the last time you ran it and the amount of errors it finds.

The result should be a computer that runs faster and is, hopefully, problem-free.

When To Run Repair Disk Permissions in OS X

The verify or repair disk permission utility does not need to be run that often. You should run it if you install and remove a lot of applications or if you suddenly experience crashes or dramatic slow-downs with your Mac. Otherwise, run it every couple of months.

The video below demonstrates how to repair disk permissions in OS X Snow Leopard.

If you have and problems running Repair Disk Permissions in OS X let us know.

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