MacOS remember that things were downloaded. MacOS refuse to open or execute script downloaded and prompt the famous message:

cannot be opened because it is from an unidentified developer.

Can I make MacOS forget this file was downloaded?

I know I can do a right-click -> open. But I want to avoid the additional hassle for specific files. The protection is particularly annoying for bash script you may want to open in a text editor multiple time. I'm well aware of the risk of exectuting a downloaded script.

I also know I can remove the protection altogether, but I don't want that.

In the info of the files, you have the information but it's not editable:

enter image description here

  • 4
    Simple Gatekeeper bypass is right click>Open for first run. Have you tried that?
    – Tetsujin
    Jun 7 '20 at 15:35
  • 1
    @Tetsujin The question does say they know they can do that, although it is lacking in detail about why that's not a sufficient solution.
    – David Z
    Jun 8 '20 at 21:32
  • 1
    @DavidZ I think the gist is, the OP wants to avoid the additional hassle for specific files, while not having to turn off protection for every file.
    – jpaugh
    Jun 8 '20 at 21:53

You can delete the download source by running

xattr -d com.apple.metadata:kMDItemWhereFroms FILENAME

To also remove the quarantine flag use

xattr -d com.apple.quarantine FILENAME

PS: If FILENAME is an application (ends in .app), add -r to have the attributes removed from all files within the application.

  • 4
    Add "-r" if you need to remove the attribute from an application, folder, or bundle
    – cobbal
    Jun 8 '20 at 18:52

To create an app that can do this from the GUI, launch Automator. Select New -> Application

In the Actions Library, go to Utilities and select "Run Shell Script" In the Pass Input drop-down menu, select Select "As arguments" image of Run Shell Script

Where it says echo "$f", replace it with xattr -d -r com.apple.metadata:kMDItemWhereFroms $f xattr -d -r com.apple.quarantine $f

So the content of the shell script is for f in "$@" do xattr -d -r com.apple.metadata:kMDItemWhereFroms $f xattr -d -r com.apple.quarantine $f done

Save the app as "DeQuarantine.app" in a location you find convenient for Drag-and-drop (I put it on the Desktop).

Then, when you have downloaded files you want to remove the warnings from, drop them on this app.

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