OS X: How to launch apps from unidentified developers on a case by case basis

By , Nov 19, 2013

Unidentified developer error OS X

OS X has a feature that prevents apps from unidentified developers from launching out of the box. While this is a noble cause, it presents issues when launching legitimate apps from great developers that don’t happen to be on Apple’s whitelist.

You can go into OS X’s system preferences and disable this protection altogether, but there’s a much more sensible option than that. Instead, how about enabling apps from unidentified developers on a case by case basis? We’ll show you how after the break.

Once you receive the dialogue message mentioned above, simply open Preferences > Security > and open the General tab. You should notice a message that says “The app was blocked from opening because it is not from an identified developer.” To the right of that message you’ll notice a button that says Open Anyway. Click that button, and the app will launch successfully.

The great thing about doing it this way, instead of enabling all unidentified apps, is that you still maintain a measure of protection from shady apps, while easily allowing the legit ones to run. True, it’s not the most frictionless experience, but it’s a fairly quick way to launch unidentified apps with little hassle.

What do you think? Do you use this method, or do you open the floodgates and let any app run on your Mac?

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  • jocastro

    jeff……. what happen to you….. seriously man….. this is boring, what happen with the tweak reviews and such!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • eXoguti093

      There’s no jailbreak for iOS 7, so there isn’t many interesting tweaks worth checking out and reviewing, when the jailbreak is out there will be tweaks everywhere again.

  • Jason Dieter

    I personally find any Mac info very helpful since I just recently purchased a Mac. Keep the tips coming Jeff. If the haters find it “boring”, don’t click on the post.

    • jocastro

      if i wanted to see a “how to do” i would Google it. seriously

      Jeff used to a bad@ss when it came to making reviews and showing off tweaks, I’ve been following him for years and i am sure a lot of people will agree with me.

      • http://bnjm.org/ Jeff Benjamin

        Fair enough, but where do you think Google gets those “how to dos”?

      • Jason Dieter

        Idb isn’t just jb news anymore. It’s all things apple. And if you don’t like reading about you I would suggest finding a new blog to visit to get the news you are looking for.

  • Kevin

    Just right-click the file and click “open” after getting the message about unidentified developers. A bit faster than going to Preferences .

    • James Perih

      Works good for me, because for some reason, the “Open Anyway” button makes no difference. But, ctrl+click works just dandy!

  • D R

    I do control-click, then select open. This gives a dialog saying the app isn’t signed, do you want to open it anyway [and if you go yes, it opens normally afterwards as well]. Much easier and straightforward than your method.

  • Robert Goldberg

    This is great. Thanks!