I have a Firefox update ready to install: 60.0.2. The message says, "This update requires administrator privileges". I'm new to Mac and am used to Firefox just automatically updating itself on Windows and Linux. This Mac Mini workstation is a test platform to investigate converting our office from Windows to Mac. I do not want to give the users any admin passwords, nor do I, as admin, want to go to each and every workstation and manually permit updates to a browser.

Is there a way around this? (High Sierra)

  • To add software etc you need an admin user. There are ways to push out releases from a central point.
    – mmmmmm
    Jul 10 '18 at 16:20
  • I believe you could assign the installer permissions to edit the files it needs to.
    – JMY1000
    Jul 10 '18 at 16:28

I ran into this today updating to Firefox 61.0.2 and on restart up came a dialog saying "Firefox is trying to install a new helper tool" prompting me to enter my admin username & password. I'm generally not a fan of typing admin credentials into a dialog box for an application update for a plethora of reasons.

Solution for me was simply to download the latest release of Firefox, mount the disk image and drag it into my Applications folder. This probably requires the logged in user to have administrative privileges, but at least does not require them to know any password - which was your stipulation.


I normally use a remote admin tool to handle this type of thing. The most basic is Apple's Remote Desktop which can run on an admin's workstation, there are more powerful server-based solutions like Jamf.

Using Remote Desktop I would download and open the Firefox installer, then select a group of computers in Remote Desktop, then select the "Copy" command. In the window that appears, drag the Firefox application to it and then at "Place items in:" picker choose "Applications Folder" (assuming that is where you have Firefox now) and then at "If an item already exists:" picker choose "Replace the item". Then hit the Copy button and the new Firefox will be copied to all the selected computers. If setup correctly, the Remote Desktop app is connecting as the local admin user on each computer to make the copy.

The users don't have to be logged in, but they do have to be either awake or in a sleep mode they can be awoken from.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .