I was trying to upgrade Xcode because it didn't let me upload to apps to iTunes Connect.

Now it's stuck in installing state (few hours) and doesn't start:

Xcode is being updated
Xcode can not be opened while it is being updated.

What do to?


10 Answers 10


There is a small progress bar under the Launchpad icon in the Menu Bar.

Image showing the progress bar

You can also see the current download progress by hovering over the icon.

Wait for it to end.

  • 12
    I couldn't believe how long it took (and was "stuck" at the end for 60% of it) but waiting it out was all it took (wait time: 2.5 hours on 2013 MacBook Air)
    – Jared
    Commented Aug 3, 2015 at 15:54

In the Updates tab of the Apple App Store, after waiting 1 hour for "2 minutes left," I hit CMD+R to refresh and that seemed to "jump start" it. It finished within 60s after that. Could have been coincidence though (YMMV).


Update: This answer doesn't work anymore as of Big Sur because there is no Check for Unfinished Downloads option.

original obsolete answer Try this: enter the App Store, click on Store in the top-left menu and select Check for Unfinished Downloads. Enter your Apple ID and password.

The above has worked for me on MacOS Sierra, I suspect that XCode was stuck waiting for credentials before download.

Update: Check for Unfinished Downloads option may not be present in the later versions of macOS.

  • 14
    In 2021 on Big Sur, I see no Check for Unfinished Downloads option in the Store menu.
    – nealmcb
    Commented Jul 21, 2021 at 2:27

In launch pad hold the Xcode icon until the X appears and click the X to delete Xcode then go back to the app store and get a fresh copy.

  • This is a shit solution because the download size is huge, they put all the emulators in the main package.
    – ThaJay
    Commented Apr 13, 2022 at 11:02

The Xcode had stuck in installing. I just opened finder, applications folder and tapped on Xcode. The installing has finished immediately.

I am not sure if it is coincidence.

Xcode 10.3, Mojave 10.14.6


sudo rm -rf /Applications/Xcode.app should wipe it out, then you can re-install from the App Store. But do make sure it's not actually updating first. It's a multi-gigabyte download so can take a while (yes, even hours, depending on your internet speed.) Opening Launchpad will show a progress bar if it's in the middle of doing something.

  • I did so but when I shutdown and started again, in Launchpad there's still an icon saying Xcode is downloading.
    – xdavidliu
    Commented Dec 20, 2021 at 0:07

I just installed Xcode (V12.5) on a fresh installation of Big Sur. It took about 5 hours to complete the final installation part of the process (all previous installs on this machine have been much quicker.

In fact the progress bar (in App Store) didn't actually complete, but Xcode did appear in the Applications folder is working fine.

Progress didn't complete but the did actually install

  • 1
    Not sure how this answers a question asked 6 years ago :-)
    – nohillside
    Commented Jun 18, 2021 at 13:24
  • 7
    @nohillside BigSur exposes a similar problem as the one encountered by the asker, so the advice for this OS is welcomed.
    – Cristik
    Commented Jun 19, 2021 at 18:32
  • 2
    After 13 hours (!) my achingly slow initial install of Xcode on a fresh MacBook Air M1 machine (Big Sur 11.4) has completed. For the last 11 hours it was slowly creeping from 9 o'clock to 12 o'clock on the progress indicator. So still relevant, @nohillside: it can work to wait way longer than anyone should have to tolerate. Unbelievable.
    – nealmcb
    Commented Jul 21, 2021 at 15:34
  • 1
    This is incredible really and seems like an Apple crisis, the whole developer experience just really SUCKS with caps, wonder if this would be an issue in Steve Jobs days. Commented Jul 28, 2021 at 2:06
  • I am waiting for an hour now for Xcode to complete the installation process. Macbook 16" 2019 Intel. Would really like to know how to speed this up. Commented Aug 5, 2021 at 14:27

For the benefit of anyone else running into this problem - I don't use my MacMini much. In fact I am back on it right now after a break of almost one year. When I tried to startup Xcode I got this same message and it would not budge.

I uninstalled it and then tried a reinstall only to be told that my OS was "too old". So there you have it - the system goes into a tizzy trying to upgrade Xcode and being held back by the OS not being up-to-date.

Instead of failing gracefully, it keeps trying over and over again!


Sometimes, a simple restart can solve this.

  • i'm using a 2021 14 inch m1 pro macbook pro and I restarted and xcode install is still stuck
    – xdavidliu
    Commented Dec 19, 2021 at 23:51
  • This was maybe to be posted as a question in the question's comments.
    – Thinkr
    Commented Mar 31, 2023 at 15:03

Download a fresh copy from Apple's download page

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