Ultimate Guide to Fixing and Resetting OSX Yosemite LaunchPad

After upgrading to OSX Developer Preview 10.10 with my Mac Developer account and running it without many problems for a week or two on my MacBook Pro (Retina, Mid 2012), I decided to do a clean-slate install for the first time in years, as well as switch to the public Yosemite Beta so I could upgrade to the GM release when it’s finished, something you are not able to do with the Developer Previews.

I had to create a bootable USB Drive to install OSX Mavericks clean, and then upgrade from there to the ‘new’ public release.  Creating the bootable USB was a pain in the ass to say the least.

After a few days of migrating data, I finally had Mavericks clean installed with FileVault enabled, and I had downloaded the Public Beta of Mavericks from the AppStore.  After installing I ran into a few LaunchPad-related installer problems.

Since iPhoto and other Apple proprietary softwares needed to be upgraded in order to run in the new Yosemite environment, I downloaded them from the AppStore and went to install.  Turns out, I had a stuck (un-deleteable) install of ‘OSX Developer Preview 10.10‘ which was keeping any future programs from being installed, I couldn’t pause it by clicking, I couldn’t remove it from my AppStore purchase list, nothing was working to get that failed/haulted/made-up installer from stopping to continue on my merry way.

Google, Trial, Error.

On the LaunchPad, it was icon-less (or transparent icon sometimes) with a white dashed border.  My initial attempts failed:

  • Left-click and hold and click the X
  • Holding Control/Option and left clicking and holding and clicking the X
  • Going to Applications folder and deleting ‘OSX Developer Preview 10.10’ (was not located there)
  • Navigate to User/Library/Application Support/Dock and removing those files, restart
  • Launching terminal and running the following command:
    sqlite3 ~/Library/Application\ Support/Dock/*.db "DELETE from apps; DELETE from groups WHERE title<>''; DELETE from items WHERE rowid>2;"; Killall Dock
  • Rebuilding the LaunchPad database by running the following command in terminal:
    rm ~/Library/Application\ Support/Dock/*.db; killall Dock

The REAL Solution

None of those worked, I was out of google-ing, but stumbled upon a random archived tweet someone sent, the following terminal command:

defaults write ResetLaunchPad -bool true

followed by:

killall Dock

I went back to LaunchPad, the “broken” application was gone, but so was my iPhoto install, which was to be expected canceling and deleting all sorts of Dock/LaunchPad bits.  Opened the AppStore back up, clicked the iPhoto ‘Update’ button, and it proceeded to download the update and run the installer as initially desired.  I am not confident as to why this happened, but have seen a few other users having this issue, hopefully you google your way into this blog post!

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Nicholas Manderfield

Ecommerce + Internet Marketer

(920) 843-8442

Currently Based in Appleton, WI