I´m creating a dmg image that should be able to use drag-n-drop of a folder onto an application.

The user installs my app by dragging a folder onto an application (.app) that is made by Automator and installs the folder by copying it to the correct location. It does not install into the Applications folder, it´s in the User´s own directories. So not something one can use an Alias or symlink for.

The only problem is that the DMG converted to read-only (compressed, in Disk Utility) does not allow one to drop anything into anything, not even onto my little install app. (! :/)

One solution is to use a read-write DMG file. Not a good alternative. The user will mess up the order or positioning of the folders and files before installing and come back to a messed up installer app later on, for next time around. Also, it does not auto-open on double-clicking on the .dmg. That´s why you make them read-only.

So, can I disable dragging and essentially "lock" the file´s location in the read-write enabled DMG file format?

For solutions, any way is interesting, by terminal or any app.

  • 1
    Why would positions of files and folders matter/affect the way a program is installed ? And, in some bizarro land where this is the case, should you not seek to rectify this, as it sounds like a massive flaw in any sort of implementation that perhaps ought not to be considering distribution.
    – CJK
    Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 13:55
  • This question is contradictory. Your title asks to disable drag/drop then your 1st sentence says the user should be able to use drag/drop. You also appear to want the user to have drag/drop capability but don't want them messing up the order. This seems to be This sounds like an XY Problem at the dev level. What exactly are you looking for and what's the problem you're trying to solve?
    – Allan
    Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 18:38

1 Answer 1


It is not possible to disable drag-n-dropping of icons in Finder for a specific read-write DMG from within the DMG.

You should consider creating your installer in a different manner. For example consider using a read-only DMG with an app inside that the user needs to double click. When double clicked it will present a window allowing the user to drag-n-drop onto that area and doing whatever you wanted doing initially.

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