I have an update for iPhoto available in the App Store but whenever I click the update button the following appears:

enter image description here

The account belongs to my wife, and as far as I know it's never been used on my laptop with the exception of, maybe 2 years ago, I created a guest account for her to try out OSX before she bought her own Macbook. But that account was deleted a long time ago, and since then I've updated tons of apps...so it's very strange.

Any ideas?

  • I have the same issue. When I try to update my iphoto I get a request to log into an account that does not belong to anyone in my household, and I have never heard of the person, am I hacked?
    – user47766
    Apr 20, 2013 at 0:47
  • I have voted to close as the issue is solved deep in the comments (the user copiued Photos from his wife's machine) and the user has not logged in for 10 years so this question and answer is not really recoverable
    – mmmmmm
    Jun 15, 2021 at 10:04

1 Answer 1


When you install Apps, you usually install them to the Applications Folder, which is accessible to all users, because it is in the ROOT directory, not just the users that installed them. You can create an Applications Folder in a User's Folder and keep them for just that user, but it usually is the first way I mentioned. That way when you make a new user on the fly, you don't have to install all those apps again, waisting space. Also, that way you don't lose apps that may have taken time to install that other users need and use.

Applications that are installed to a computer through the App Store are linked to an Apple ID that was used to Purchase/Download it. This is similar to iOS devices as well. If I download an app on another persons iPhone using my account, they need my account to update it.

So this means one of two things:

Either your wife bought iPhoto (Or which ever other App is in question) or when you bought the computer, registered iPhoto to her account.

When you buy a new mac, it comes with iLife, and iLife is now downloaded through the App Store. It will link those 3 Apps, to the Apple ID of your choosing so that if anything happens and you need to do a restore or something, you can download those apps you got for free again, no problem.

I had to do this when I bought my mid 2011 Mac Mini.

So she either purchased it or registered it to her account, and that is why it is still on the computer, because it is an App that can be accessed by any user that is on the machine, so it wouldn't have been deleted when she installed it/registered it. You will need her sign in and password in order to update it.

I hope that this information helps you out.

  • 1
    It occurs to me. I know what the issue is. A few weeks ago I messed up my OS and I ended up having to reinstall a lot of apps. iPhoto is one of them but I don't have the iLife USB drive so I had to copy the iPhoto app from my wife's laptop to mine. Is it possible to install iPhoto from the App Store or do I have to wait until I get back to America where my USB drive is?
    – Zrb0529
    Jul 23, 2012 at 21:02
  • If you pulled it from her drive, then that is what is causing the issue for sure. Unfortunately though, unless you know her password, own it on the App store, or have access to an install disk/USB, or have access to a backup/time machine backup of your system which would have your iPhoto App Backed up on it, then you will not be able to get it on your system updated through any legal means for free. You can delete the App, it won't do anything to your Photos, and then buy it on the App store, that will install it fresh on your system. But it will cost you money.
    – de_an777
    Jul 23, 2012 at 21:10

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