I use a mac install before by another user. This user installed some application like iphoto with this appleID.

Now this user does not use this computer, and I want update the applications he install before. I have my own AppleID. when I ask to update application the system say me I can't do that because this application was install by another appleID.

I dont want to uninstall the programs, because than I will have to buy them anew. Do I have any other way of updating accept asking for the old user for his password time and time again? Cant I somehow "move" these programs from his ID to mine?


2 Answers 2


I had the same problem, and it worked: Apple App Store: Grayed out Aapple Id Explained - Valiant:

  1. Go to the app listed in the App Store as needing an update (usually in the /Applications folder).
  2. Right click the app then click “Show Package Contents”.
  3. Go into the “Contents” folder, then into the “_MASReceipt” folder.
  4. Delete the “receipt” file (you may need to enter a local administrator 5. username and password). Please note that the app will still work as intended.
  • After deleting the file I still got an error that this application was never installed using the new apple id. However I was now able to re-install the application using the new id. May 16, 2018 at 17:36

There is currently no way to move applications between Apple IDs nor is there in the general case where you want to merge everything from one account to another. In addition to the technical limitations, there are also licensing issues to consider as you can't justshare applications bought in the App Store with just anybody.

Ignoring the license issue for a moment you can

  • get the person you got the Mac from to enter his/her password for the update
  • keep using the old version
  • buy the applications again
  • contact Apple

There is one case where if that person got iPhoto and the iLife applications as part of the hardware purchase, I believe that person is not only able to but supposed to transfer license for those bundled apps along with the sale of the hardware and the OS itself. I don't know how that would work, but I wouldn't hesitate to use Apple's store staff, phone support or billing support on the web to see if you just need to re-register the Mac or get a redemption code for bundled apps sent to you as the new owner.

  • Forgive the substantial edit - I didn't really want two answers on this - revert any or all of it if you don't like where I took your already good answer. Cheers -
    – bmike
    Oct 13, 2012 at 15:04

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