Why disable SIP?

At this point I want you to pause and ask yourself a question. Do you really depend on TotalFinder workflows so much that you want to possibly lower your system security? Frankly, I’m going to stop active TotalFinder development because it is not economically viable to continue development for a small group of users who decide to disable SIP. Also it is likely that in the next OS release after El Capitan TotalFinder won’t work at all. It is increasingly more difficult to reverse-engineer Finder as new parts are being written in Swift. Also operating system security hardening will probaly continue in future. Those are good things, but you will have to let TotalFinder go at some point anyway. Maybe for you the day is today. Bite the bullet and move on.

I appreciate your candour, but the power of the rhetorical question: Do you really depend on TotalFinder workflows so much that you want to possibly lower your system security? is somewhat lost when yes, it is.

I’m not blaze, and I’m certainly not naive, but there are fewer general threats to the security of my Mac even before SIP was implemented. However, there was a greater threat to my productivity in Finder with the terrible handling of features and preferences for displaying files and folders (no folders on top, no ‘up’ directory button) and the truly absurd lack of cut and paste keyboard shortcuts (without an option key modifier). I can’t believe I’m saying this, but Windows 10’s File Explorer is a long long long way ahead of Finder in being able to deal withy our files.

It’s a pity you’ve given up, and a pity that you won’t be able to continue with the likelihood of them blocking off access to Finder completely and the move to Swift. However, I still maintain the scare tactic of warding off users with a security threat to justify stopping using Total Finder a bit disingenuous.

I apologise if this upset the better nature of you, esteemed developer, or anyone else in the community, but I don’t feel I’m being unfair.


Thanks for expressing your thoughts.

I personally disabled SIP on my machine. For tech savvy users it is not that big deal to run with SIP disabled I believe. But you cannot realistically expect me to recommend to all TotalFinder users to do the same. I would be asking for a trouble.


I think we need to ask Apple to either add extensibility to Finder or to buy out the TotalFinder technology and integrate it into Finder itself. Maybe if you don’t feel you can continue making money on TotalFinder, Apple might be able to get it for a discount.

Another option would be to slow down the development on TotalFinder or open up a https://www.patreon.com/ campaign to crowdfund TotalFinder development and offer bonuses to those that support it. I personally wouldn’t mind paying $5 or $10 for every time you have a major release of TotalFinder if the alternative is not having TotalFinder work anymore. Or maybe if you can commit to a frequent enough release cycle, you might make it a few dollars a month. Then for the people that don’t want to support the Patreon campaign, you might charge a small upgrade fee every time (or every few times) you release something major. Or maybe you could charge an upgrade fee for every time a new major version of OS X comes out, like Cocktail.

Anyway, I really think you should keep selling TotalFinder and TotalSpaces, even if all you’re doing for updates is minor maintenance stuff. There will still be people interested in it that are willing to disable SIP or whatever other stupid app-blocking stuff Apple comes out with. If it takes a lot of effort to overcome a new Apple “security” feature, you could charge for upgrading to the version that supports the new OS X (like Bartender did for v2). There are definitely options to continue bringing in revenue from TotalFinder and TotalSpaces for as long as OS X provides a way to disable the extra “security” features.

If you decide to stop developing and selling TotalFinder and/or TotalSpaces, you could always give it over to the open source community to update. There’ll probably be some people willing to work on it to keep it moving forward. Maybe if you want to keep selling it, you might see if you can find any volunteers to help you with the project in return for free copies or something like that. I’d probably be willing to give it a shot, although I’m not exactly an expert on developing OS X apps that modify the system. I tend to be a fast learner when it comes to programming, so I might be able to figure things out eventually using some of my free time.

Anyway, you should try to look at options for keeping the apps going as long as possible. They’re still going to have people interested in them for as long as they continue to work on some configuration of the newer OS X versions.

Oh yes, I do respect your position. The most compelling part of the argument was that SIP is just the start - that hardening against injection of code was only going to be improved/upgraded and would basically make development of apps such as total finder impossible.

Of course recommending lowering of system security would leave you liable to criticism at least and potential lawsuits at worse. And no where did I state as such.

I also appreciate the effort that you went to create such a great piece of software. My original point remains - I don’t think you needed to diminish the need for your product to your users as part of your rhetoric. The other reasons for discontinuing development as, previously mentioned, are far more compelling and absolute, and I don’t think your users would have thought any less of you for the decision.

Thanks, and I wish you all the best for the future.