The MOApp Software Manufactory Weblog.
Rants, Comments, Finds, and Tips from the Desk of Michael & Ollerum.

Closing In and Closing Out - or SIMBL, MenuAndDockless and El Capitano

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Once a year I get a panic attack – directly after Apple releases the first Developer Preview of its upcoming operating system for desktop computers; also known as Mac OS X.

I download it, install it on a dedicated test Mac and the first thing I check is SIMBL and my MenuAndDockless since I can’t live without it. Usually it takes me a day or two to make it work and to publish a new version so that we can work without the Menu and Dock for another year.

This time, though - I couldn’t get it to work at all. With El Capitano, Apple introduced a new layer of security: System Integrity Protection. The new SIP protects the system software against modification both on disk, and in memory. MenuAndDockless needs SIMBL and what SIMBL does is ‘code injection’ into running apps but El Capitano doesn’t differentiate between good and bad (aka wanted and unwanted) manipulations.

The good news: For now Apple allows users to disable System Integrity Protection.

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You need to boot into your Recovery Partition (cmd+R on startup) and select the Security Configuration Utility.

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Then you need to disable the System Integrity Protection and restart your Mac. This allows you to use some(!) SIMBL plugins again. TotalFinder, for example, is doomed.

Before you thrash your Mac and buy a Windows thingy, I’ve written und uploaded a modified MenuAndDockless version for 10.10 and 10.11 which you can download here:

MenuAndDockless Website

But keep in mind that disabling Apple’s System Integrity Protection is not recommended by Apple and it may very well be that my panic attack next year will be fatal if Apple decides to make SIP mandatory for all of us…