Things needs a Library to continue

Last Updated: Sep 23, 2019 01:34PM CEST

If you’ve just migrated your data via Apple’s Migration Assistant, you might be unable to launch Things.

Apple’s Migration Assistant seems to incorrectly restore file and folder permissions in some cases when transfering your data to a new Mac (or restoring the Mac you’ve been using so far). You see this prompt when you try to launch Things:

“Things needs a Library to continue. You may locate an existing Things library or create a new empty one.”

Here’s how to fix the problem:

  1. On your Mac, go to the Applications folder, find TextEdit app and open it.
  2. Create a new document.
  3. In the menu bar at the top of your screen, click Format > Make Plain Text. If you don’t see that option, you’re already using plain text.
  4. Copy and paste the following line of text into the new document:
    sudo chown -R [username] "/Users/[username]/Library/Containers/com.culturedcode.ThingsMac"
  5. On your Mac, go to Applications/Utilites and open Terminal.
  6. Copy the following command, then paste it into Terminal:
    who am i | cut -d' ' -f 1
  7. Hit ↩ Return to execute the command in Terminal.
  8. The next line after the command will show your macOS user name. Double-click to select it, then copy it using ⌘ Cmd + C.
  9. Return to the text document you created in step 2.
  10. Select [username] (the entire highlighted section including the brackets) and hit ⌘ Cmd + V to insert your own user name.
  11. Double-check the command you just edited – you must have inserted your user name twice.
  12. Copy the entire edited command.
  13. Go back to Terminal, paste the command in, then hit ↩ Return.

You might be prompted to enter your Mac user account’s password – that’s entirely normal. You are providing the password to macOS, not to us. Terminal will not display the password as you enter it. Just keep typing normally and hit ↩ Return when you’re done.

You should now be able to launch Things.

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