What’s under your Mac’s hood (so to speak)? Unix. It’s a complex, powerful beast of an operating system that provides security, performance, and dependability.
The whole geeky mess is covered in the Mac’s typically skin tight interface which hides most of what’s going on underneath. Now you can put your geek on and delve into Unix permissions. For free.
Unix Permissions Made Easy (or, easier)
One of the many reasons your Mac is so secure from outside threats has to do with Mac OS X’s Unix roots and permissions. Apple hides much of the complexity from the average Mac user.
But the power is still there, accessible, and useful to us all, depending on your needs.
Honestly, not everyone. If you love your Mac and it’s working just fine for you, enjoy the peace and security. If you’re ready to dig into the Mac’s engine room, there are plenty of apps available to help.
It’s a free Mac app that lets you check and modify Unix permissions on files throughout your Mac.
PropEdit is simple enough. The user interface is familiar in a Finder-like Column view way.
Click on folders to drill down to view all the files, including hidden files, on your Mac. As you click on each file you’ll see the Ownership and Permissions listed in the far right column.
Click to change either or both. Then click the Apply button to change ownership or permissions on the file or folder. It’s simple, elegant, fast, and free.
And, it’s powerful. Unix ownership and permissions shouldn’t be mucked around with unless you know what you’re doing and have a specific need to make changes.
PropEdit is easier to use than Terminal, your Mac’s app for the command line interface. What’s missing is the ability to change permissions using Octal notation. Numbers are easier to type than clicking boxes. Other than that, not bad for free.