Steam doesn’t like case sensitive HFS+


I don't play many games, I prefer working on projects and blogging personally :). So when a friend of mine wanted to install Steam on my Mac Pro, it was more than willing to accommodate my wishes by not installing.

The procedure on not working

1. When installed in /Applications, complain when it discovers the file system is set to case-sensitive HFS+.

2. When installed in a virtual disk image formatted with case-insensitive HFS+, complain when it installs its Application Data files in the user's Library folder, which is of course located on the aforementioned case-sensitive HFS+ file system.

3. When a symbolic link is created between the Steam data folder and a folder on the disk image to accommodate these two problems:

% cd ~/Library/Application Data
% ln -s /Volumes/SteamStuff/Steam ./Steam

… then take an age to load, and finally crash.


So it seems Steam and most Adobe products refuse to run on case-sensitive file systems, and many of my *nix software either prefer or mandate they run on case-sensitive file systems. No prizes for guessing which I choose to accommodate!

That's not to say I'm not glad other Mac users with more orthodox file system and software choices are able to play games, just personal preference.

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Ruben Schade is a technical writer and infrastructure architect in Sydney, Australia who refers to himself in the third person. Hi!

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