Quicken installation repeatedly says "Quicken needs to be installed in the Applications Folder"

ladybau Member
The solution I finally found is that the Quicken.app MUST be in an Applications folder under the user name: "Macintosh > Users > username > Applications > Quicken.app"

When it is simply in "Macintosh > Applications > Quicken.app" it will keep giving you the error message and will not install properly. Move Quicken.app into an Applications folder directly under the user name and proceed from there.


  • RickO
    RickO SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    If that works for you, great. But that is not normal behavior. By default, the app belongs in Macintosh > Applications.
    Quicken Mac Subscription; Quicken Mac user since the early 90s
  • Jon
    Jon SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    This might be a permissions issue. Does your user account have admin privileges on your Mac?
  • lhossus
    lhossus SuperUser, Mac Beta ✭✭✭✭✭
    The usual cause of the dialog "Quicken needs to be installed in the Applications folder" is the presence of a hidden folder named ".background" within the Applications folder. 


    The hidden folder ".background" properly exists only within the Quicken installation .dmg (disk image file). 

    Based on this, Quicken looks for the absence of this ".background" folder in the place where Quicken is being run from as a confirmation that it has been properly installed.

    But if Quicken finds this ".background" folder (indicating that it is running from the installation .dmg), it puts up the 'needs to be installed" dialog.

    As a consequence of the above, if a ".background" folder exists in the Applications folder, Quicken is tricked into producing the "needs to be installed" dialog because it thinks it is being run from the installation .dmg.

    The Fix
    • In a Finder window, open the Applications folder where Quicken is located.
    • Press Command+Shift+Period    <= This command toggles macOS to show hidden files.
    • Move the ".background" folder to the Trash
    • Press Command+Shift+Period    <= Toggle off the visibility of hidden files.
    Quicken Mac Subscription • macOS Monterey 12.6 on MacBook Pro 13" M1
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