I've created a simple AppleScript .scpt file, using TextEdit.

If I now open it with AppleScript editor, I can run it. But when I try to modify and save it, I get the following error:

enter image description here

It's frustrating that such a basic operation has got me completely stuck.

What is going wrong?

  • To which folder/directory are you trying to save it to?
    – nohillside
    May 22, 2014 at 9:01
  • to ~/Desktop/Foo/
    – P i
    May 22, 2014 at 9:34
  • I assume the folder exists and you have write access. Did you try another folder? Or creating a simple text file and store it there?
    – nohillside
    May 22, 2014 at 9:46
  • Thanks, I got it to work by creating a new file, pasting the contents in, saving. Still not sure why it won't save a document created by another editor.
    – P i
    May 22, 2014 at 9:51
  • 6
    I was facing the same problem. Essentially, both you and me are creating non-compiled .scpt files by hand when this is a compiled file format (contrary to .applescript). Lri gives the right answer here.
    – user36018
    Oct 18, 2014 at 15:19

2 Answers 2


This is happening because .scpt extension is used for compiled scripts, just use .applescript extension and it will work just file.

Yet another example of the stupid coded error messages.


In addition to @sorin's answer, the most likely cause for this error is that you do not have permission to save scripts.
By default only system is allowed the create new scripts.

The solution is to enable write access for yourself.

Open Finder
Go to folder: /Library
Right click on the Scripts folder

enter image description here

Get Info
expand v Sharing & Permissions:

enter image description here

Click on the 🔒 lock to allow changes. Add + a user (either Administrator, or your own user account) and give that user Read & Write permissions.

Finally, enter image description here

Click on the (...)V and Apply to enclosed items...

You will now be able to save new scripts.

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