My Mac Did Not Have Permission to Restart

I was trying to install the trial version of Adobe Premiere Elements 9 this past weekend but every time I tried, I was met with a very disappointing message. Over and over again, the installer would come back with the message that the installer was unable to initialize. It would then direct me to restart my computer and try again.

So, being the diligent sort of person that I am, I closed all of my programs, and instructed my Mac to restart. It began its shutdown cycle but then it happened. It just sat there with a blue screen and a spinning little gear. I thought, “Okay, there’s probably a lot going on under the hood and it needs to do some maintenance before it can finish shutting down so I had better just let it sit for a few minutes.” Those few minutes turned into an hour, with the same screen showing. Obviously there was something that was hanging the restart process so I held down the power button to manually shut things down and then turned it back on. Once it was completely restarted, I tried to shut down but it got hung up again and required a hard shutdown. It became clear to me that I had some issues that needed correcting.

After a quick Google search I found a few articles on using the Apple Disk Utility to fix permissions so I decided to give it a shot. To find the Disk Utility, you need to look in your Applications folder for the Utilities folder.

Open that and look for the Disk Utility icon and give it a double-click.

Once it is open, click on your hard drive in the left panel and then click the Verify Disk Permissions button. The program will begin checking all of your disk permissions and list any problems in the large window. It might take a while to complete, depending on drive size and number of errors. Once it is done, click on the Repair Disk Permission button to fix any problems that might have been found.

When I first ran the utility it found over 100 disk permission issues that needed correcting. After repairing the problems, I tried a restart on my system and it not only did a complete restart, it did it very quickly.

I have to admit that I don’t do nearly enough house keeping on my system as I probably should. I also almost never shut down my MacBook. It stays on 24/7, with its only break coming from being put in sleep mode when I close the lid. That’s probably not always the best strategy but it’s what I do. Having found all the issues I did with the Disk Utility, I can tell you that I am definitely going to run this more often to help keep my Mac healthy.

And if you are wondering if it solved my Adobe Installer issues the answer is NO. I apparently have some other issue that might involve contacting Adobe. But at least I know it isn’t because of my disk permissions.

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  • http://jacklarson.aminus3.com Jack Larson

    In addition to Time Machine, I do a Super Duper backup each day. It automatically repairs Permissions before Backing Up.

  • http://www.dougherrick.com Doug

    I’m having a somewhat similar problem on my Windows 7. I cannot find any permission dialog. Any ideas how to do this on a PC?

    • http://photographygk.com Greg

      Doug – Right-click on the folder. Look towards the bottom where you see “Attributes”. If you don’t have write permission, the “Read-only” box will be highlighted.

  • http://www.cuerdon.com David Cuerdon

    Hey Jeff!

    When you’re in Disk Utility, you can save time and just click “Repair Permissions” and completely skip the “Verify Disk Permissions”.
    The “Verify” button is for Uber-Geeks that might want to go into “Terminal” and fix specific permissions individually. ;-)
    Repair just goes ahead finds and fixes all permissions.
    I find it rally helps to do this once a week.

    “Permissions” is strictly a Mac thing, I’m not sure what Windows 7 users have for housekeeping utilities on the PC.

  • Mitchell Osborne

    Doug,

    I’ve encountered the same situation in Windows 7 and what you usually need to do is right click on the program and run it as administrator. I have had to do this occasionally even when running an administrator account. I can’t say why, but sometimes it is necessary and it has worked for me.

  • Sirburrows

    I have also had problems with this (still will not install on windows 7) and I know there are many others from reading the forums, this clearly was not ready for release.

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