Made Aperture work again in Snow Leopard

So I went to launch Aperture 2.1.4 in Mac OS X Snow Leopard (10.6.2) today and much to my surprise, it crashed. It bounced once and tossed up the error dialogue. I did the usual things — pulled out the plug-ins from all library folders, removed the preferences, reinstalled Aperture, reinstalled the update, reinstalled 10.6.2 — and nothing worked. I resorted to the Internet and Google…

“Aperture unexpectedly quits” yielded little help, and “Aperture crashes” didn’t provide much assistance either. I finally tried “Aperture doesn’t work with Snow Leopard” and that led to a fix. Buried within the discussion section of the Aperture Users Flickr group was the solution. Tucked away inside the trial version of Aperture is a hidden installer that fixes the problem. Unfortunately, it can’t be accessed through the Mac OS X GUI; it can only be run from the command line. Here are the instructions:

  1. Download the trial version of Aperture 2.1.4.
  2. Mount the disk image, but don’t run the installer (cancel the installer if it automatically starts).
  3. Open Terminal (Applications/Utilities/Terminal).
  4. Type in:open “/Volumes/Aperture Trial 2.1.4/Packages/PluginManager.pkg”
  5. Installer should launch and run the PluginManager package. Follow the instructions.
  6. When the installer finishes, launch Aperture and it should work (it did for me).

Many thanks to Michael Nagel of the Aperture Users group on Flickr for this fix.