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I have a Macbook with a few installed applications. Some of these include VSCode, Notion, Docker, Slack, Zoom, Notion, TickTick, etc. all of these were installed via a downloaded file from the proper website rather than via the app store. Pretty sure they are all installed via /Applications. I am an administrator on the system.

The issue I'm having is whenever there's an update for one of these apps. The system asks me for the password to install a helper. I give it the password and then usually nothing happens. Then I'll restart the app and it will update.

Years ago I remember a far easier process with updating apps. One where it didn't do all of these helpers and when I updated an app it just updated.

Maybe I'm doing something wrong where I'm always getting bothered by these helpers? I'd like to just update the apps when they prompt me and not always have to be bothered. It's endless. I'll be working and in a flow state at work and here comes slack asking me for my password.

 > ls -la /Applications
total 48
drwxrwxr-x  28 root        admin    896 Jul  1 10:41 ./
drwxr-xr-x  20 root        wheel    640 Mar 21 02:13 ../
-rw-r--r--@  1 tacoman     admin  20484 Jul  1 10:41 .DS_Store
-rw-r--r--   1 root        wheel      0 Mar 21 02:13 .localized
drwxr-xr-x@  3 tacoman     staff     96 Jun 11 18:17 1Password.app/
drwxr-xr-x@  3 tacoman     staff     96 Mar 12 05:31 Alfred 5.app/
drwxr-xr-x@  3 502         staff     96 Jul  5  2023 AppCleaner.app/
drwxr-xr-x@  3 tacoman     staff     96 Oct  4  2023 Beyond Compare.app/
drwxr-xr-x@  3 tacoman     staff     96 Jun  8 05:03 Cursor.app/
drwxr-xr-x@  3 tacoman     staff     96 Feb 23 09:49 Docker.app/
drwxrwxr-x@  3 502         admin     96 Jul  1 10:14 Firefox.app/
drwxr-xr-x@  3 root        wheel     96 Jul 26  2022 GarageBand.app/
drwxr-xr-x@  3 root        wheel     96 Jun 21 21:34 Google Chrome.app/
drwxr-xr-x@  3 tacoman     admin     96 Jun 27 12:41 IntelliJ IDEA CE.app/
drwxr-xr-x@  3 502         admin     96 Jan  1  2024 Keybase.app/
drwxr-xr-x   3 root        wheel     96 Jul 26  2022 Keynote.app/
drwxr-xr-x@  3 tacoman     staff     96 Jun 13 21:56 Notion.app/
drwxr-xr-x   3 root        wheel     96 Jul 26  2022 Numbers.app/
drwxr-xr-x@  3 root        wheel     96 Jul 26  2022 Pages.app/
lrwxr-xr-x@  1 root        wheel     54 Mar 21 02:13 Safari.app -> ../System/Cryptexes/App/System/Applications/Safari.app
drwxr-xr-x@  3 root        wheel     96 Jun 12 20:11 Slack.app/
drwxr-xr-x@  3 502         staff     96 Dec  7  2023 Sublime Text.app/
drwxr-xr-x@  3 502         admin     96 Jun 17 12:03 TickTick.app/
drwxr-xr-x   5 root        wheel    160 Apr  2 00:53 Utilities/
drwxr-xr-x@  3 root        wheel     96 May  7 08:25 Visual Studio Code.app/
drwxr-xr-x@  3 502         staff     96 Dec 18  2023 iTerm.app/
drwxr-xr-x@  3 root        wheel     96 Apr 12 15:07 zoom.us.app/

What should I be looking for?

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  • Why not turn off auto updates and perform them when you aren’t interrupted or use focus mode to delay the alert? It’s not entirely clear why you have several users installing apps. Choosing one admin to do the installs might be simpler? Are you familiar with Unix group permissions?
    – bmike
    Commented Jul 1 at 15:25
  • I am familiar with unix permissions. I don't have multiple users installing apps. Only me on the system. so I'm not sure how or why there's root,502 and tacoman. As for turning off autoupdate? is that in the app or a system configuration?
    – Xxe Yêd
    Commented Jul 1 at 15:36
  • Oh and by the way very few of them ever autoupdate. even when I click update on slack i'm still promted with the helper. i will check settings in each. Even so though can I not have these helpers? driving me crazy
    – Xxe Yêd
    Commented Jul 1 at 15:37
  • This is a problem the App Store is designed to fix. I’m not sure there is a general path for apps not choosing to be in that design and delivery model.
    – bmike
    Commented Jul 1 at 16:27
  • Understood but i used to do the same stuff years ago on my Mac and never got all these helpers. wondering if there's a way around it so I atleast don't have to see them every few days
    – Xxe Yêd
    Commented Jul 1 at 16:48

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