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Open up the app bundle by right-clicking and selecting Show Package Contents.
I had tried this previously but now see more persistence is required. No .pkg files are visible in the Contents directory. One has to mount the InstallESD.dmg disk image in the SharedSupport folder and then you can see four .pkg files and one .mpkg file. I checked a couple of them with Suspicious Package and the certificates all expire April 14th, 2029 (at least for the Mojave installer).
 


One has to mount the InstallESD.dmg disk image in the SharedSupport folder and then you can see four .pkg files and one .mpkg file.
Yeah, sorry about that. I was trying to do it from memory and forgot that everything is in the InstallESD.dmg. It’s like that for all the installers (since Lion). That should be obvious though too, since the dmg is the single largest file inside the app bundle.
 


Adding to the recent discussion of a second install of Safari 13.0.2 and sourcing of download URLs: On a Mojave system with the Check for Updates and Download New Updates options activated under Software Update, a second install folder for Safari 13.0.2 was received. The included metadata files show a tiny 4KB size increase vs. the previous installer.

Prior version:
<pkg-ref id="Safari13.0.2MojaveAuto" installKBytes="192130" version="1.0.0.0.1.1570214549">​
<key>PostDate</key> <date>2019-10-07T17:04:03Z</date>​

New version:
<pkg-ref id="Safari13.0.2MojaveAuto" installKBytes="192134" version="1.0.0.0.1.1571107884">​
<key>PostDate</key> <date>2019-10-16T20:01:13Z</date>​
(Both versions point to support.apple.com/kb/HT201222 for detailed security content information.)

On a system that allows checking and downloading of updates, but has all the “install” options deactivated, you can find the download URL listed in one of the two metadata files that are included with the installer package that Software Update automatically downloads. Look in /Library/Updates/ to find downloaded (but not yet installed) folders containing updater package(s) and metadata files. The metadata file with a .extrainfo extention can be opened in TextEdit to reveal the posting date and the source/download URL. (The plist files at the root of the Updates folder are less useful and largely contain references to print devices.)
 


Speaking of what updates are available, I am disappointed in Apple pulling RSS feeds (I believe due to "security") of updates to Apple Downloads.

I had a plugin on a site that would list all the current (top 20) updates [and] that was broken. There is no way to monitor the updates, as now Apple is using the App Store for updates. And when they are on the support page, I would need a plugin (for WordPress) that monitors (daily/weekly) any site changes and link updates.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
Speaking of what updates are available, I am disappointed in Apple pulling RSS feeds (I believe due to "security") of updates to Apple Downloads.
That Apple web page has been grossly out-of-date and misleading in recent times, so maybe the real issue is Apple's elimination of useful software update information and how it forces everyone into its stores for support. I'm sure it's entirely coincidental that Apple generates an ever-larger portion of its revenue from these stores and that the first thing you face in the App Store is a huge, colorful circus of animated ads selling profitable software and media.
 



I am on Mojave 10.14.6....
I did notice a change in the Software Update panel, however. Now it only lists Catalina as an update and the supplemental and Safari updates are only viewable after clicking a "More info..." link. I also noticed there are checkmarks next to these updates in the window that opens. Unchecking, say, the Safari update and then closing this window does not appear to stick. The update shows as checked when opening this window again. A placebo checkbox?
I'm also on Safari, and have noticed this behavior change in the System Software Update panel. The Safari 13.0.2 update is visible only after looking under the (small font) "Another update is available" line, with the clickable link to "More info..."

Once in "More info," the Safari update is pre-checked. And there's another checkbox to "Install." The only way to "unstick" that selection is to choose "Cancel scheduled updates." (Huh? Who "scheduled" them?!?)

After choosing "Cancel scheduled updates," another dialog appears, in which the "Cancel" button is not the default, while the "Install" button is the default.Quick-clickers will likely blow through that without realizing the need for using the non-default button.

However, after closing the "Cancel" button, the update is, in fact, "unstuck" and requires further action to install.

By the way, I realized, as others have reported, that I already have 13.0.2 installed, and it's nagging me to install it again.

What a mess.

(I don't use Safari often, so I haven't experienced any problems with 13.0.1 or .2).
 



For what it's worth, these Supplemental Updates are evidently being included in the full installers Apple is pushing out for Catalina. Software Update reported that Catalina was up to date after I installed the OS using a full installer that I pulled down from Apple late yesterday morning. Software Update still reports that the OS is up to date this morning.
 


For what it's worth, these Supplemental Updates are evidently being included in the full installers Apple is pushing out for Catalina. Software Update reported that Catalina was up to date after I installed the OS using a full installer that I pulled down from Apple late yesterday morning. Software Update still reports that the OS is up to date this morning.
Wikipedia lists build numbers for the supplemental updates.
Wikipedia said:
macOS Catalina Releases
VersionBuildDateDarwinRelease NotesStandalone download
10.1519A583October 7, 201919.0.0Original Software Update releaseN/A
10.1519A602October 15, 201919.0.0Supplemental update
10.1519A603October 21, 201919.0.0Revised Supplemental update
10.15.1 Beta 219B77aOctober 17, 201919.0.0Developer Beta 2
 


Once in "More info," the Safari update is pre-checked. And there's another checkbox to "Install." The only way to "unstick" that selection is to choose "Cancel scheduled updates." (Huh? Who "scheduled" them?!?)
After choosing "Cancel scheduled updates," another dialog appears, in which the "Cancel" button is not the default, while the "Install" button is the default.Quick-clickers will likely blow through that without realizing the need for using the non-default button.
However, after closing the "Cancel" button, the update is, in fact, "unstuck" and requires further action to install.
There is no "Cancel scheduled updates" on my install. The checkbox setting is still not honored. Presumably, there is some other setting that triggers the appearance of this option. At least Safari has not yet been updated (behind my back).
 


I’m being held hostage. I have an iPhone 6 Plus. iOS 13 can’t be used on it. There is an update to my Apple Watch. But it requires my iPhone to be running iOS 13. The watch downloaded it, leaving 24 MB free space on the watch. Luckily I was able to delete it and get my free space back.

I thought of upgrading my iMac (2017 4.2GHz with 1TB SSD) to Catalina, but read somewhere (I can’t find it now, though) that it converts Notes and Reminders to a new format that can only be used with iOS 13.

Plus, will the Finder recognize my iPhone without iOS 13, now that iTunes is gone? ... So I guess I am being held hostage to spend a ridiculous price to get a new iPhone (when the 6 Plus works fine) or I am stuck forever with all my other devices staying where they are!

I’ve been a loyal Apple user since the dawn of time, but I’m beginning to question that, considering the forced upgrade and all the other stuff they have eliminated over the years (AppleWorks, Aperture, HyperCard, iDVD, Airport, iWeb, and on and on).
 


Not sure this has been posted, but Apple has added a new option to the softwareupdate command in macOS 10.15. You can now download a full installer directly using the following command:

softwareupdate --fetch-full-installer --full-installer-version 10.XX.YY

You would substitute the XX.YY with the version of the installer you want - so 15 or 14.6. I have heard, but not tested, that you can even get versions of macOS 13 with this command. It does require using a computer with Catalina installed.
 


I thought of upgrading my iMac (2017 4.2GHz with 1TB SSD) to Catalina, but read somewhere (I can’t find it now, though) that it converts Notes and Reminders to a new format that can only be used with iOS 13.
Going the other way (IOS 13 on my iPhone and Mojave on my Macs), your reminders are not automatically upgraded, and you are warned that upgrading them (and unlocking new features of the new Reminders app) is incompatible with older operating systems.

There have been no nag buttons about this since I installed IOS 13 about a month ago. The only reminder (sic) that I am back-leveled is that, on the main reminders screen (which I usually don't see, since Reminders opens to the last list seen), there is an Upgrade button on the right side of the header above the list of lists.

I suspect that Catalina has similar fencing around upgrading the actual reminders.

I don't remember such an issue with Notes around the Catalina upgrade (and I can work with my Notes on all my devices), but there may have been a similar situation for the Mojave-IOS 12 release in 2018.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
Not sure this has been posted, but Apple has added a new option to the software_update command in macOS 10.15.
In macOS 10.12, softwareupdate lacks any "full-installer" options, but here's an example of listing pending software updates:
Bash:
softwareupdate -l
Software Update Tool

Finding available software
Software Update found the following new or updated software:
   * iTunes Device Support Update-
    iTunes Device Support Update ( ), 128392K [recommended]
 


...I have heard, but not tested, that you can even get versions of macOS 13 with this command...
Evidently the new option is only intended to allow download of installers for currently-supported versions of macOS.

I can confirm that the command can be used to pull down a full installer for macOS 10.13.6, but attempts to download older major versions result in a "not found" error, even when executed on a Mac that can boot the requested older version of macOS/OS X.
 


If anyone has suggestions on how one might go about downloading recent macOS releases without going through the Apple Store it would be appreciated.
Just want to add that I am aware of the Python script mentioned previously here on MacInTouch. While this is one option, I am looking at other methods as well.
In researching my above questions I stumbled across a possible solution I had forgotten about from my system administrator days in the use of Reposado and Margarita.
What's Reposado?
Reposado is a set of tools written in Python that replicate the key functionality of Mac OS X Server's Software Update Service.
Margarita
Margarita is a web interface to reposado the Apple Software Update replication and catalog management tool. While the reposado command line administration tools work great for folks who are comfortable in that environment something a little more accesible might be desired.
One advantage to this solution is that it can run both on macOS and Linux platforms. Perhaps a bit overkill for my needs, but for those in the audience who wish for a full service solution without having to run macOS Server to get the Server Update Service, and all the strings it attaches, this may be a solution worth considering. Think of it as the Installinstallmacos.py utility on steroids.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
More on Apple signing certificate issues:
Robert Hammen said:
The Apple Packagepocalypse, 2019 Edition…
Apple uses certificates to digitally sign their installer packages (which are embedded inside their OS installers). A few Mac admins noted that the primary certificate, and the intermediate certificate, used to sign many of their packages, was going to expire on October 24, 2019 (which happens to be today).

In the last couple of weeks, Mac admins have noticed that Apple has been replacing packages with new ones, which are signed with certificates that do not expire until 2029. Anyone still running an Apple Software Update Server, or Reposado, or netSUS, has seen the many gigabytes of newly-updated, but older, packages being published daily....
 



Apple has published a new support article today telling you to redownload all your installers because of the expired certificates. The article also includes links where you can download new macOS installers going back to Yosemite (earlier versions aren't available for download).
It looks like the "createinstallmedia" embedded within the installer pkg is now looking for some other syntax. I have an HFS+ formatted flash drive named "osx" and I use this Terminal command:
Code:
sudo /Applications/Install\ macOS\ Sierra.app/Contents/Resources/createinstallmedia --volume /Volumes/osx --applicationpath /Applications/Install\ macOS\ Sierra.app
However, instead of making the flash drive installer, Terminal provides this error:
Code:
/Volumes/osx is not a valid volume mount point.
I'll note the installer is located in my Applications folder. The older (expired) installer would create the flash drive installer without complaint. Any suggestions? Thanks
 


Code:
sudo /Applications/Install\ macOS\ Sierra.app/Contents/Resources/createinstallmedia --volume /Volumes/osx --applicationpath /Applications/Install\ macOS\ Sierra.app
That looks like the correct syntax. I created a High Sierra USB installer recently with an updated certificate and had no problems. So perhaps there is a difference with Sierra or a problem with the mount point?
 


That looks like the correct syntax. I created a High Sierra USB installer recently with an updated certificate and had no problems. So perhaps there is a difference with Sierra or a problem with the mount point?
It worked with both the High Sierra installer and Mojave installer,so this "/Volumes/osx is not a valid volume mount point" issue seems to be something specific to the newly signed Sierra installer (even though I've been using that name - and I tried others with the same result). Glad I still have the old (now-expired) Sierra installer; I'll just change the date on the Mac and keep it off the Internet until the installation is complete.

I will say that I was a bit surprised that Apple even responded to this certificate issue with any fixes for older OS version (older than High Sierra), but I'm not surprised they fubar'd it.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
I wanted to download macOS Mojave, while I would be doing something else, but not launch the installer.
  1. I can't, for the life of me, find any way to stop the download once it's started in the Mac App Store.
  2. It looks like the installer is launched by
    /System/Library/CoreServices/AppDownloadLauncher.app
  3. ... but Apple won't let you delete that file (e.g. after making a compressed archive of it)
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
1. I can't, for the life of me, find any way to stop the download once it's started in the Mac App Store.
I eventually discovered the extremely unintuitive trick to stopping it:

In App Store.app, click the "Purchased" tab. If a download is currently taking place, you should be able to "Pause" the download – after a delay – and you may or may not then be able to "Cancel" it.
3. ... but Apple won't let you delete that file (e.g. after making a compressed archive of it)
I tried sudo chmod and sudo rm and was blocked by Apple in both cases. (I assume that, at least in macOS Sierra, I should be able to boot from a different drive and remove the file from the non-boot drive, but I haven't tried that.)
 


It worked with both the High Sierra installer and Mojave installer,so this "/Volumes/osx is not a valid volume mount point" issue seems to be something specific to the newly signed Sierra installer (even though I've been using that name - and I tried others with the same result). Glad I still have the old (now-expired) Sierra installer; I'll just change the date on the Mac and keep it off the Internet until the installation is complete.

I will say that I was a bit surprised that Apple even responded to this certificate issue with any fixes for older OS version (older than High Sierra), but I'm not surprised they fubar'd it.
I copied the Sierra installer over to the Applications folder of another Mac running Sierra and then tried using createinstallmedia (the proper syntax for Sierra). Result: Exactly the same problem with the "not a valid mount point". Thanks, Apple.
 



Ric Ford

MacInTouch
Apple has published a new support article today telling you to redownload all your installers because of the expired certificates. The article also includes links where you can download new macOS installers going back to Yosemite (earlier versions aren't available for download).
I downloaded the macOS Sierra installer. The download, InstallOS.dmg, is a disk image. (The same is true for Yosemite and El Capitan installers, but High Sierra and later downloads are forced to the App Store.)

Inside InstallOS.dmg is InstallOS.pkg. Inside that is Install macOS Sierra.app. Deep within that (inside Contents/Resources/) is createinstallmedia with a modification date of 7/15/17.

(I haven't tried doing anything with these files yet.)
 


I downloaded the macOS Sierra installer. The download, InstallOS.dmg, is a disk image. (The same is true for Yosemite and El Capitan installers, but High Sierra and later downloads are forced to the App Store.)
Inside InstallOS.dmg is InstallOS.pkg. Inside that is Install macOS Sierra.app. Deep within that (inside Contents/Resources/) is createinstallmedia with a modification date of 7/15/17.
(I haven't tried doing anything with these files yet.)
The "outside" installers will install the macOS Installer into the Applications folder and will provide it with the proper name (e.g. Install OS X El Capitan.app).

I did use the proper createinstallmedia syntax to make an El Capitan flash drive installer, and that works fine. So it's the Sierra installer that has some code that is different than the old Sierra installer, and now createinstallmedia doesn't work with it.
 


For the moment (until Apple re-issues a fixed Sierra installer), I'm installing Sierra to my "recovery" flash drive (and that's working with a post-Oct. 24th date).

Once that's done, I'll just put the Install macOS Sierra.app installer inside the Applications folder, and I'll be able to boot with that flash drive and install Sierra on any appropriate Mac without having to deal with munging dates.
 


I used Apple's macOS Sierra installer download link, downloaded InstallOS.dmg, mounted that disk image, then opened InstallOS.pkg with Pacifist to extract Install macOS Sierra.app.
...
Install Disk Creator said:
Invalid macOS Installer
The selected item does not appear to be a valid macOS installer.
It is lacking the file "Contents/SharedSupport/InstallESD.dmg"
...
Weird; the "InstallESD.dmg" file is actually there in my copy (which installed to my Applications folder from the downloaded "dmg" file when I ran it).
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
I copied the Sierra installer over to the Applications folder of another Mac running Sierra and then tried using createinstallmedia (the proper syntax for Sierra). Result: Exactly the same problem with the "not a valid mount point". Thanks, Apple.
I downloaded the macOS Sierra installer. The download, InstallOS.dmg, is a disk image. (The same is true for Yosemite and El Capitan installers, but High Sierra and later downloads are forced to the App Store.)
Inside InstallOS.dmg is InstallOS.pkg. Inside that is Install macOS Sierra.app. Deep within that (inside Contents/Resources/) is createinstallmedia with a modification date of 7/15/17.
I used Apple's macOS Sierra installer download link, downloaded InstallOS.dmg, mounted that disk image, then opened InstallOS.pkg with Pacifist to extract Install macOS Sierra.app.

I then opened Install Disk Creator, chose a flash drive and selected Install macOS Sierra.app to build the standalone installer, but it didn't work.
Install Disk Creator said:
Invalid macOS Installer
The selected item does not appear to be a valid macOS installer.
It is lacking the file "Contents/SharedSupport/InstallESD.dmg"
I then opened InstallOS.pkg and ran the installer, which placed Install macOS Sierra.app inside the /Applications folder, and I chose that file in Install Disk Creator, which accepted it, but creating the standalone installer failed, much like it failed for you:
Install Disk Creator said:
Error Encountered
An error occurred.
Try ejecting the destination disk and reinserting it, or rebooting. It probably couldn't be unmounted to erase it.
I tried to eject the disk and got "Error -47". I then physically removed it and reinserted it. The same thing happened again.

I then tried using diskutil unmountdisk but I couldn't even get things working with a major effort there.

Another steaming pile from Apple...

#applequality
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
Weird; the "InstallESD.dmg" file is actually there in my copy (which installed to my Applications folder from the downloaded "dmg" file when I ran it).
Yes, it's there in /Applications/Install macOS Sierra.app after running the installer, but it wasn't there in the app I copied out of the installer package using Pacifist.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
... and I chose that file in Install Disk Creator, which accepted it, but creating the standalone installer failed, much like it failed for you...
So, I tried Install Disk Creator with my older Install macOS Sierra.app. Install Disk Creator had no trouble building the bootable installer from this, but that installer, of course, fails after Oct. 24 with a misleading error message (due to its certificate expiration).
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
So, I tried Install Disk Creator with my older Install macOS Sierra.app. Install Disk Creator had no trouble building the bootable installer from this, but that installer, of course, fails after Oct. 24 with a misleading error message (due to its certificate expiration).
Next I tried copying the new Install macOS Sierra.app over the old one on the bootable flash installer. I then booted from that, but the Mac went into recovery mode after long delays.

Ugh.

The same thing happened on two completely different Macs (2017 MacBook Air and 2017 iMac 5K). From recovery mode, you can apparently install Sierra, but I didn't go through that exercise, having already wasted way too much time on this Apple problem.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
Here are more countermeasures against Apple's incessant, obnoxious update harassment:
Rob Griffiths said:
Remove the macOS Catalina guilt trip from macOS Mojave
I have no plans to move my main iMac to macOS Catalina, at least for the forseeable future. There are two key apps I use—Fujitsu’s ScanSnap scanner software and the Many Tricks’ accounting app—that are both 32-bit. In addition, there are changes in Catalina relative to permissions that make it somewhat Vista like and slow down my interaction with the system. (My MacBook Air is my “production” Catalina Mac, and I have an older retina MacBook Pro that I use for Catalina betas.)

But Apple really wants people to update to Catalina, so they let you know about Catalina…constantly, it seems.

... I decided to tackle this by creating a launchd agent...
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
FYI...
Apple Support said:
Update your iPhone or iPad software to avoid issues with location
Starting just before 12:00 a.m. UTC on November 3, 2019,* some iPhone and iPad models introduced in 2012 and earlier will require an iOS update to maintain accurate GPS location. This is due to the GPS time rollover issue that began affecting GPS-enabled products from other manufacturers on April 6, 2019. Affected Apple devices are not impacted until just before 12:00 a.m. UTC on November 3, 2019.
...
Important information for owners of iPhone 5
For iPhone 5, an update is required to maintain accurate GPS location and to continue to use functions that rely on correct date and time including App Store, iCloud, email, and web browsing.

If the update to iPhone 5 is not completed by November 3, 2019, you will be required to back up and restore using a Mac or PC in order to update because over-the-air software updates and iCloud Backup will not work.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
I did use the proper createinstallmedia syntax to make an El Capitan flash drive installer, and that works fine. So it's the Sierra installer that has some code that is different than the old Sierra installer, and now createinstallmedia doesn't work with it.
... I then opened InstallOS.pkg and ran the installer, which placed Install macOS Sierra.app inside the /Applications folder, and I chose that file in Install Disk Creator, which accepted it, but creating the standalone installer failed, much like it failed for you...
I subsequently downloaded the macOS High Sierra installer from the App Store and used Install Disk Creator to create a bootable flash drive containing that installer, so the High Sierra package isn't broken like the Sierra package.

It takes a long time to boot this flash drive and it boots into the recovery environment (utilities screen), but I can apparently install High Sierra from there. (I didn't actually go through doing an installation.)
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
... I then opened InstallOS.pkg and ran the installer, which placed Install macOS Sierra.app inside the /Applications folder, and I chose that file in Install Disk Creator, which accepted it, but creating the standalone installer failed, much like it failed for you...
This looked to me like a bug in Apple's createinstallmedia program in the updated macOS Sierra installer package

Install macOS Sierra.app/Contents/Resources/createinstallmedia

except that the createinstallmedia program appears to be identical between old and new installers, so I must be missing something somewhere. Maybe it's a bug in InstallAssistant_springboard, which has a modification date of Oct. 22, 2019 in the new package? It's all a really weird mystery to me, as I can't quite figure out what's going on to cause this kind of problem.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
A few more notes about Apple installers:

The Mac App Store (at least in macOS Sierra) retains information about installers it sees, even after quitting the app, which can be very confusing. Here's an example:
  1. Mount a volume containing a previously purchased installer, e.g. for macOS Server.
  2. View "Purchased" items. macOS Server has an "Install" button. You can't re-download it.
  3. Quit Mac App Store and unmount the volume containing the installer.
  4. Open Mac App Store again and choose "Purchased" again. Same thing. It thinks the installer is available, even though it's not. Click "install" and nothing happens.
  5. Reboot but do not mount the volume containing the installer.
  6. Open Mac App Store > Purchased. Now you can download macOS Server.
However, Mac App Store won't let you download software that is not compatible with the Mac you're using, even if you need it for a different Mac. For example, you can't download OS X Mavericks on a 2015 MacBook Pro, even if you previously purchased it and it shows a Download button in Mac App Store > Purchased. "OS X Mavericks cannot be installed on this computer."

Presumably, you could run an older OS X inside a virtual machine on the newer computer and download the older installer within the virtual machine, but I haven't tried this. (It's possible the same virtual machine trick might work to download a newer macOS, e.g. Catalina, on an older Mac that won't run it, but again, I haven't tried that.)
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
I then opened InstallOS.pkg and ran the installer, which placed Install macOS Sierra.app inside the /Applications folder, and I chose that file in Install Disk Creator, which accepted it, but creating the standalone installer failed, much like it failed for you:
I just repeated this test using DropDMG, which failed in the same way with Apple's new macOS Sierra installer app:
/Volumes/TEST is not a valid volume mount point.
But, yet again, DropDMG was able to build an installer disk from the old Sierra installer app - then that old installer subsequently fails to install Sierra, because of Apple's expired signing certificate.

I've now wasted a lot of hours on this, and I haven't even gotten all the new installers downloaded yet. I hope it helps other people avoid some of these problems, and it sure would be nice if Apple could fix this latest time-consuming mess they created.

#applequality
 


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