Why was the macports user implemented

Gregory Seidman gsslist+macports at anthropohedron.net
Wed Aug 31 18:38:17 PDT 2011

On Wed, Aug 31, 2011 at 03:09:33PM -0400, Jeremy Lavergne wrote:
> > Please explain to me like if I were a four-year old, why was the user
> > 'macports' implemented?
> The user was created to address this problem:
> Portfiles and the packages they install can contain arbitrary code, and
> should not be trusted unless they are signed and that packager is trusted.
> The typical way of implementing this is creating a user and group, so
> permissions on files can be set to `macports:macports`.

While we're on the topic, I recently got a new Mac and used the OS X
Migration Assistant to move stuff over. It automatically copied all of
macports, but did not create the macports user and group. I eventually did
it manually (by digging into the Makefile for the MacPorts source install),
but I was wondering if there was some automated way to recreate the user if
it gets blown away somehow.

Yes, I understand that this is a rare occurrence, and I'm not saying there
necessarily *should* be an automated way, I'm just wondering if there is. I
could also envision a "ports sanity-check" command that not only recreates
the user but checks into any number of potential issues.


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