Mac OS X 10.8 “Mountain Lion” and GateKeeper

Discussion and announcements regarding the Mac port… er, original version of Oolite.

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Mac OS X 10.8 “Mountain Lion” and GateKeeper

Post by JensAyton » Thu Jul 12, 2012 4:28 pm

The next version of Mac OS X is expected to be released later this month.

I am currently not a member of the Mac Developer Program, so I’m not in a position to test Oolite on the gold master released a few days ago. I expect it to work, but 10.7 exposed bugs in the sound system and they probably won’t have got any better.

More importantly, 10.8 features GateKeeper, a security feature which by default prevents applications downloaded from the net from running unless they have a digital signature certified by Apple. This means that by default, newly-downloaded copies of Oolite will not be allowed to run under 10.8, because it’s “from an unidentified developer”. You can bypass this behaviour as follows:
  • Select Oolite in the Finder.
  • Hold down the control (“ctrl”) key and click the Oolite icon.
  • Select Open from the pop-up menu.
  • You now get the traditional “This is an application downloaded from the Internet” warning, and can choose to open it.
After successfully running Oolite for the first time, it is not necessary to repeat the process.

To the best of my understanding, the options for becoming an “identified developer” are:
  • Start a company specifically for Oolite, and get a Mac Developer Program account for the company. ($99/year plus company setup cost)
  • Designate one person to release every future version of Oolite forever, and use a Developer ID tied to that person’s personal account. ($99/year plus cost of ensuring immortality)
(The last bit isn’t strictly true, because the OS itself will not check that new versions are signed with the same ID as old ones, at least not yet for non-App Store apps. The new version of the Sparkle update framework does, though.)

Neither option is tenable for a strictly-not-for-profit project with shifting membership. As such, I have no intention of pursuing “identified developer” status for Oolite at this time.

Note: I have attempted to restrict this post to publicly-available information. My thinking is informed by information that is under non-disclosure.

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