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I'm trying to track the changes of an installer/patcher, is there a way to track changes the installer/patcher makes and where all its files are placed?

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up vote 8 down vote accepted

Standard OS X Installer packages can easily be viewed. One tool for this is Suspicious Package, a QuickLook plugin that shows files and scripts contained in the Installer package.

While installing, you can monitor file system accesses using tools like opensnoop, fs_usage (both command line utilities) or fseventer.

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Thank you, these are all extremely helpful! – MPX Aug 23 '12 at 19:29

You can show the files that would be copied by an installer by pressing command-I:

Or with lsbom:

$ lsbom ~/Desktop/KeyRemap4MacBook.pkg/Contents/
.   40755   501/20
./Library   40755   0/0
./Library/LaunchAgents  40755   0/0
./Library/LaunchAgents/org.pqrs.KeyRemap4MacBook.server.plist   100644  0/0 485 2125025754
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Thanks, these are great too, but how exactly does the cmd-I work, it tried that one and it didn't seem to show anything but well, the information about the installer. I'm assuming it only works on apple package installers? I'm using a custom game installer BTW. But still thanks I got what I needed. – MPX Aug 23 '12 at 19:31
@MPX There's a standard format for OS X installers, pkg, created by Apple's developer tools and comparable with MSI on Windows. If the developer's roll their own solution, you're on your own, having to use file system monitoring and similar workarounds. – Daniel Beck Aug 23 '12 at 20:07
Yeah that's exactly what I thought! Thanks for the help. – MPX Aug 23 '12 at 20:17

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