Mac OS X Installers: Selecting the volume on which you want to install

Posted by Pierre Igot in: Macintosh
December 16th, 2003 • 4:48 am

Here is one that I’d really like to understand. In this day and age, if you want to keep your system software (and third-party software) up to date, you have to use the Mac OS X installer all the time.

What I don’t understand is why, when it comes to selecting the volume on which to install the update, the installer automatically guesses which volume is the right volume only half of the time?

It’s not like I have several volumes on which Mac OS X is installed. I only have one, and I always install everything on that volume (system updates, applications, etc.).

So what’s the deal? It’s just totally inconsistent to require me to do one extra step (select the appropriate volume) only half of the time. And I really wonder what explains this (assuming that there is an explanation).

3 Responses to “Mac OS X Installers: Selecting the volume on which you want to install”

  1. ssp says:

    The behaviour is for the package to decide. In case the IFPkgFlagRootVolumeOnly property is set to be YES, the installer will select the only admissible choice for you. Otherwise you’ll have to select the root volume yourself.

  2. Pierre Igot says:

    My problem then is why Apple’s own installers sometimes select the only admissible choice, sometimes don’t (even though all other volumes have the exclamation mark indicating that they are not admissible).

  3. ssp says:

    I guess that’s still consistent with my previous guess. In those cases the package says that it may be installed on any volume but its ‘VolumeCheck’ script tells the installer that all but one volume are not suitable.

    You only asked for a consistent explanation, not for ‘good reasons’ ;)

    Of course it would be nice if the installer auto-selected the single possible option in such cases. Perhaps you want to file a suggestion/bug-report on this.

    In addition I feel the option causing the installer to only do its work on the root volume is an evil one. It sounds like the installation won’t work on systems installed on other drives irrespective of their version, which probably isn’t very nice.

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