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So I was installing python3, pip, and a few other applications through Homebrew when I first got my Mac. I realized I was doing all this in /usr/bin and not /usr/local/bin, and I wanted to just to back to what was originally in /usr/bin. Nothing more, nothing less. I re-installed the OS (from my local disk and also the internet) and I still have my "python3" and "pip3" applications within /usr/bin.

I think I also removed emacs, so when I type which emacs I get emacs not found. I believe OS X comes with a native version of emacs that I also seem to have lost. Any advice on how to get all the original contents of /usr/bin back, and remove what I've added?

  • Looking into this further, it might be a possibility that pip3 and python3 are actually now part of the Catalina release. In addition, the change to zsh has potentially removed emacs from the terminal. Still, it would be great if someone could confirm that these are actually intended in the /usr/bin folder! – Dancetrooper Oct 14 '19 at 9:43
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You can't fiddle with /usr/bin: it's (SIP) restricted. To validate this understanding, just execute

ls -laO /usr/bin

So "resetting" this path as you seek to do is a non-starter.

/usr/bin is full of binaries compiled by Apple themselves. For instance, if you execute /usr/bin/git --version you'll see the git that lives here is an Apple thingy; nothing to do with Homebrew.

I suspect that the programs were already installed by Apple in /usr/bin BEFORE you began installing stuff with Homebrew.

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