I just re-downloaded El Capitán off of the App Store for the purposes of transferring it to another machine via USB. When it was done downloading, it automatically launched the installer asking me to click on continue to start installing El Capitán. I do not wish to reinstall, so I quit the installer, but now I cannot find it. Where would the App Store have downloaded it to?


When finished, it puts them in the Applications folder.

OS installers are all called "Install OS X [OS Name]" which might not be what you expected, if you're looking alphabetically for instance for El Capitan.

Prior to completion they are squirrelled away deep inside /private/var/folders & not easy at all to find.

  • At this folder, search for appstore and your file probably will be something like encrypted0000000000.pkg. – Ratata Tata Dec 15 '16 at 11:53

For me it was: /private/var/folders/yy/v7l5q9l962j23_n6ttp9cxw00000gn/C/com.apple.appstore/1127487414/iyu1194865269351609080.pkg

To find it out for yourself, open "Activity Monitor" -> Select the process "storedownloadd" -> Open files and Ports -> then you should see the path.

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  • 1
    This seems like the temp file that then get's moved to /Applications/Install macOS XX – ClintM Sep 24 '18 at 18:37

I upgraded from 10.11 to 10.12 . Downloaded at night - the mac went to sleep after that so I had to initiate the upgrade manually. Found the download in the Application folder waiting to start.

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