Back in February, Apple's Worldwide Developer Certificate, designed to verify third-party apps and services, expired, requiring Apple to issue a new certificate for developers to use.

As pointed out by TidBITS (via Ars Technica) a side effect of the replacement of the certificate causes older OS X installers to fail to launch. OS X installation files downloaded from the Mac App Store before February 14, 2016 and stored on a computer or USB drive are no longer functional. This includes installation files for OS X El Capitan and older versions of OS X like Mavericks and Mountain Lion.

oldosxinstaller

Image via TidBITS

Users who keep OS X installers on hand or have created USB install disks in case of emergencies should replace their files with new versions by re-downloading them through the Mac App Store using purchased history. TidBITS points out that some older versions of OS X, like Lion, will not be downloadable on newer machines. Users who can't replace an expired certificate can still use older installers by changing the dates on their machines.

If you are in the middle of an OS X install and get tripped up by the expired certificate, Randy Singer offers a suggestion on how you can work around the problem quickly, without having to download a new installer:

1. In the OS X Installer, choose Utilities > Terminal.
2. Enter date 0201010116 and press Return.
3. Quit Terminal and continue the install.

That Terminal command sets your system date to 1 February 2016 -- before the certificate's expiration -- so the installer can continue. Once you have completed the installation, visit System Preferences > Date & Time to reset the system date.

Apple's certificate renewal process resulted in some problems for developers and Mac users back in November, as it caused multiple Mac App Store apps to display a "damaged" error and fail to open. Apple quickly addressed the issue and has helped developers transition to the new certificate.

Top Rated Comments

garirry Avatar
77 months ago
Apple needs to make it so that anyone can download any version of OS X at any time, even if it's not compatible with their system. It's annoying how I can't download any version of OS X on my MacBook because it isn't compatible, so I have to go search for another Mac and download from there.
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)
emm386 Avatar
77 months ago
Apple screwed up big time here, I'm sure we all remember. Essentially though, the certification system is what's broken here.
really annoying though I find is, that the plain simple user is no more the authority over his own system.

A user should always be able to override what a system thinks is its best intent. Even if it's the wrong decision, even if I have to deal with catastrophic consequences: I (and no one else) should be able to decide, what's happening on my system. I can live with my computer misbehaving and me having to carry the consequences. but I can not live with the fact, that I no longer am in control. Admittedly, not even Microsoft gets this nowadays. at least not to the level I used to.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
pat500000 Avatar
77 months ago
This is stupid. I don't believe people as the consumers need to deal with this issue. This should have been resolved long time ago.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
0815 Avatar
77 months ago
But be careful not to set the date to January 1st, 1970 ... you don't want to brick your mac ;)
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
firewood Avatar
77 months ago
You simply re-download a new copy? Sounds like a non-issue.
Unless you are located somewhere remote with no broadband or even any reliable internet.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
N10248 Avatar
77 months ago
Yay more downloading for me...

Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

maxresdefault

Review: M1 Max MacBook Pro After Three Months

Wednesday January 19, 2022 11:30 am PST by
It's now been a few months since the M1 Pro and M1 Max MacBook Pro models launched in October, and MacRumors video editor Dan Barbera has been using one of the new machines since they debuted. Over on the MacRumors YouTube channel, Dan has shared a three month review of his MacBook Pro to see how it has held up over time and how it's changed his workflow. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube ...
iphone se 2020 top

New iPhone SE Likely to Launch in April Based on Production Timeframe

Wednesday January 19, 2022 6:44 am PST by
Apple suppliers will begin producing display panels for the third-generation iPhone SE this month, with final assembly of the device likely to start in March, according to information shared by display industry consultant Ross Young. Based on this production timeframe, Young believes the third-generation iPhone SE is likely to launch in the second half of April, or perhaps in early May at...
AirPods 3 New Firmware Feature

Apple Updates AirPods 3 Firmware to Version 4C170

Tuesday January 18, 2022 11:46 am PST by
Apple today released a new 4C170 firmware update for the AirPods 3, an update from the prior 4C165 that was made available in December. Apple does not offer details on what's included in new firmware updates for the AirPods‌, so we don't know what improvements or bug fixes the new firmware brings. There is no standard way to upgrade the ‌AirPods‌‌ software, but firmware is...
iPad Air Feature 2 green

New Apple Products Filed in Regulatory Database, Likely Including New iPhone SE and iPad Air

Tuesday January 18, 2022 6:11 am PST by
Apple today filed unreleased iPhone and iPad models in the Eurasian Economic Commission database, as spotted by French blog Consomac. The filings likely represent the rumored third-generation iPhone SE, fifth-generation iPad Air, and potentially more. The unreleased iPhone models have the identifiers A2595, A2783, and A2784, while the unreleased iPad models have the identifiers A2588, A2589, ...
iphone 5g mmwave

U.S. Airlines Warn of 'Catastrophic' Crisis With Impending 5G Rollout, AT&T and Verizon Agree to Delay Around Airports

Tuesday January 18, 2022 10:35 am PST by
Verizon and AT&T's upcoming rollout of new C-Band 5G technology could cause chaos and lead to widespread delays of passenger and cargo flights, major U.S. airlines said on Monday in a letter sent to the White House National Economic Council, the FAA, and the FCC (via Reuters). "Unless our major hubs are cleared to fly, the vast majority of the traveling and shipping public will essentially...
microsoft office icons

Microsoft Releases Office for Mac Update With Full Apple Silicon Support in Excel

Tuesday January 18, 2022 4:15 am PST by
Microsoft has released a new version of its Office for Mac productivity suite that includes an updated Excel app with 100% native support for Apple silicon machines. According to the release notes accompanying version 16.57, Excel will now run natively on Macs powered by Apple's M1-series processors without having to use the Rosetta 2 translation layer, which means anyone using a Mac with an ...
appleeducation

Apple's US Education Store Now Requires Institution Verification to Buy Discounted Products

Wednesday January 19, 2022 2:22 am PST by
Apple is now requiring that customers in the United States verify that they're active students, teachers, or staff members at an educational institution in order to access education discounts on products. Previously, little verification was needed for customers to purchase products through Apple's education store in the United States. Apple's education stores offer models of the iPad and Mac ...
iPhone 14 Mock pill and hole thumb

ProMotion Now Expected to Remain Exclusive to iPhone 14 Pro Models, Not Expand to Entire Lineup

Sunday January 16, 2022 8:56 am PST by
Continuing the tradition set with the iPhone 13 Pro, only the highest-end iPhone 14 models will feature Apple's ProMotion display technology, according to a respected display analyst. Ross Young, who on multiple occasions has detailed accurate information about Apple's future products, said in a tweet that ProMotion will not be expanded to the entire iPhone 14 lineup and will remain...
Beyond iPhone 13 Better Blue Face ID

Rumored iPhone 14 Pro Feature Delayed Until Next Year

Wednesday January 19, 2022 3:00 am PST by
Apple's long-rumored under-display Face ID technology will not be coming to the iPhone 14 Pro, according to recent reports. Based on the latest rumors, it now looks unlikely that the 6.1-inch iPhone 14 Pro and 6.7-inch iPhone 14 Pro Max will feature Face ID technology under the display as several reports claimed over the past year. Display industry consultant Ross Young, who often reveals ...