I'm on OS X 1011.1 and am looking at MacPorts. Should it be installed as root:wheel, or should it be installed as me?

Everything in it's directors is root:wheel, and it looks to me like nothing will work unless it is? But its docs make no mention of this.

If not root, how do I fix it?

  • Welcome to Ask Different. we prefer one question per question. Have you installed one specific piece of software and gotten an error? Making broad generalizations usually gets vague or broad answers like "yes - that's how it's designed" - basically, could you remove most of the questions and edit in specifically what "it" you are looking to "fix"?
    – bmike
    Commented Nov 27, 2015 at 14:10
  • I don't use things like MacPorts as I prefer to install non-OS X CLI software directly from source code however I see no issue with it being installed and owned as root:wheel as the .pkg installer or the source code installer requires authentication which would typically set ownership as root:wheel. Are you able to use MacPorts after installation or are you having issues? Commented Nov 27, 2015 at 14:10

1 Answer 1


By default, MacPorts installs in /opt/local, which usually needs to be created and therefore MacPorts by default needs root to install and upgrade. However, it doesn't have to be this way. MacPorts can be configured to use any directory you want as its root directory, and according to this page if you set your home directory to be its root directory you can use MacPorts without needing to be root.

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