How to Fix Steam Crashing on Startup on macOS Sonoma 14.5 – The Mac Observer

How to Fix Steam Crashing on Startup on macOS Sonoma 14.5 – The Mac Observer

When your Mac is running smoothly, it’s a wonderful thing. Unfortunately, bugs sometimes rear their ugly heads. This can often happen after upgrading to a new version of macOS. If you find yourself experiencing apps like Steam crashing on startup after updating to macOS Sonoma, don’t panic. I have several steps you can take to resolve this issue.

How to fix Steam or other apps crashing on startup after upgrading to macOS Sonoma 14.5

When an application crashes on startup, it is usually due to one of three causes. First, outdated software can cause unstable behavior, such as an application that simply won’t open. Otherwise, the problem could be that files important to the application are corrupted. Third, there may be a file permissions issue on the volume where this application is installed.

There are several steps you can follow to repair easily corrupted files or wrong permissions. Let’s go through them one by one.

1. Fix Bad Permissions

During any operating system update, you run the risk that some permissions on your files and folders may be corrupted. Fortunately, macOS offers a tool that can fix this problem quickly and easily.

As the next step in troubleshooting your app, such as Steam, crashing on startup on macOS Sonoma, you need to make sure all permissions are correct. The easiest way to do this is to use Disk Utility.

  1. Click on Applications > Utilities > Disk Utility.
  2. Choose the volume your application is installed on.
  3. At the top of the Disk Utility window, click FIRST AID.
Running First Aid in Disk Utility to Fix Steam Crashing on Startup on macOS Sonoma

The tool will get to work checking for any file system corruption or erroneous permissions. After a few moments, Disk Utility should finish and report any changes it has made.

Once done, try relaunching your application. If it still can’t get going, it’s time to move on to other possible solutions.

2. Try reinstalling the problematic app

Your next step will be to reinstall the app that is causing you problems. Now if you are having the same problem with multiple apps, this may or may not help.

But it won’t hurt. Focusing on one problematic app at a time, go ahead and reinstall any of the apps that are crashing on startup.

Once done, try relaunching the application. If it opens successfully, great. Your problem is fixed for this app at least and you can try the same with all other apps you are having issues with.

Deal with other corrupted files including Rosetta 2

Apps like Steam, World of Warcraft, and Blizzard Entertainment’s desktop app require slightly special treatment. There are many other apps in the same category, including some popular productivity apps.

What I’m talking about here are applications that always use an Intel binary. Many developers haven’t taken the time to update their apps to be native on Apple silicon, so they rely on Rosetta 2 to run on your new Mac.

Unfortunately, there are several reports that Rosetta 2 is not installed with a macOS upgrade or the required files are corrupted. This has been reported for earlier versions of macOS, and I saw it personally after updating to the first developer beta of macOS Sonoma.

This brings us to our final troubleshooting step. You may need to reinstall Rosetta 2. It’s not difficult to do, but it’s not immediately obvious how to do it.

To reinstall Rosetta 2 and restore your ability to launch Intel applications, follow these steps.

  1. Click on Applications > Utilities > Terminal.
  2. In Terminal, type the following command, then press Return: software update --install-rosetta
  3. After a few seconds, the Rosetta 2 license agreement will appear. The installation will ask you to accept the terms of the license agreement. Follow these on-screen instructions, then wait a few moments.
  4. Soon you should see confirmation that Rosetta 2 has been installed. Once you receive this message, you can close the terminal.

Now try launching your application again. Hopefully everything will be restored to the way it was before and you can get back to playing your Steam games, World of Warcraft, or running whatever app was stubbornly refusing to launch.

If all else fails, technical support

If none of the solutions above have resolved your issue, it may be time to turn to technical support resources. Naturally, if you’re experiencing this on the macOS Sonoma beta, there won’t be much help right away. All you can do is file a bug report and hope that Apple fixes it in the next beta.

On the other hand, it could be an unidentified bug related to the application itself. Contact the technical support team for this particular application and see what recommendations they make.


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