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Umm, done unzipping yet?

So, the first thing I did after after wrapping my head around the cocoa interface was to start installing software like a madman. I wanted Firefox, VLC, Kobo, Gimp, Vim, etc, etc, etc. So, I had to learn how to install apps on OS X.

Apps in OS X seem to come in at least two different forms: .app files, which are self-contained application packages that you simply drop into /Applications on the system (totally awesome), and .pkg files, which are more windows-like installers.

The latter seems to be required with more complex installs, like plug-ins that need to put files in privileged places all over the system, requiring root access to install. As an admin user, I can already put .app files into /Applications without root access, the implications of which are that a virus could infect the apps in /Applications too, so that's a strike, security-wise, for OS X over Linux. Still better than Windows though, where a Power User can change anything under Program Files or Windows without escalating privileges.

The .app files or .pkg files can come in many forms, the most common of which is a .dmg file, which is a disk image that OS X will casually mount on a loopback. I've noticed that the Finder can mount .dmg and .iso files with a simple click. With an .app file, you just drag it to /Applications, and you're done, and uninstalling is just a simple. Far superior to any OS that I've used in the past. It's also common to download .zip files, which clicking on in the Finder fires-up the Archive Utility.

So there I was, clicking along and installing, and then a progress bar indicating that the .zip file was opening just kept going, and going, and going. I looked online, and found that I am not alone in having this problem. Apparently, the appleeventsd daemon requires killing under those circumstances, something that the nice guy at Apple support did not know. Looks like the issue is in OS X 10.8.2, which I am running.

Hmm. Bad timing in jumping on the Apple bandwagon? I wonder how long they'll take to fix the issue. Good test for what it will be like to live as part of Apple's ecosystem.

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