Written byConnie Yang
SIP (System Integrity Protection) on Mac: How to Enable/Disable It
Summary: What is SIP on Mac? This post is an overview of Mac SIP (System Integrity Protection). From here, you'll learn what's SIP used for, if it is safe to disable SIP, and how to enable or disable SIP on Mac
When you need to install and run some third-party applications on Mac, you may be asked to disable SIP (System Integrity Protection) on your Mac. What is SIP on Mac and should you disable it? You can get the answers from this SIP overview.
Table of Contents:
- 1. What is SIP on Mac?
- 2. Is it safe to disable System Integrity Protection on Mac?
- 3. How to disable SIP on Mac?
- 4. How do you disable SIP on an M1/M2 Mac?
- 5. How to disable SIP without fully Recovery Mode?
- 6. How to enable SIP on Mac or M1/M2 Mac?
- 7. FAQ about SIP on Mac
What is SIP on Mac?
SIP stands for System Integrity Protection. It is a security feature built in the Mac operating system that was introduced in OS X EI Capitan (OS X 10.11).
The main task of SIP on Mac is to protect the safety and integrity of the system files and directories, preventing them from modifications or attacks from unauthenticated processes. It brings a high level of security to the entire system.
Is it safe to disable System Integrity Protection on Mac?
In principle, it's not safe to disable SIP on Mac as it has the functionality to protect your entire macOS against malware or virus attacking.
A little bit earlier, there are many third-party apps that require you to disable SIP. Their purpose is to take control of your Mac and change the way the OS works by default to run their self-designed drivers. These apps are usually designed with unadvanced techniques. And some of them may carry viruses.
Nowadays, there's less chance to disable SIP to install and run the software. Most of the apps, of course, the professional and well-designed ones, have ways to run on a Mac machine stably and securely without disabling SIP.
However, if you are a developer, it may be necessary for you to make your Mac allow apps downloaded anywhere and turn off SIP temporarily. That's because you need to test and debug the driver of your software on a Mac. And if you debug your software from Xcode, you may need to disable SIP to install system extensions. Some Mac users also need to disable SIP temporarily to install incompatible apps on Mac.
How to disable SIP on Mac?
By default, SIP is enabled on your Mac. To disable SIP (System Integrity Protection) in macOS, you need to:
- Restart your Mac and simultaneously press down the Command - R keys until seeing a spinning globe or the Apple logo.
- Select Utilities > Terminal.
- Run the following command in Terminal and press Return.csrutil disable
- Exit Terminal and click the Apple menu > Restart to reboot your Mac.
Now, your Mac is SIP unprotected.
How do you disable SIP on an M1/M2 Mac?
Disabling System Integrity Protection on an Apple Silicon M1/M2 Mac is also very easy, follow these steps:
- Shut down your Mac and wait for a few seconds.
- Hold down the power button (Touch ID) until you see the startup options and the gear icon labeled with Options.
- Select Options >and then click Continue.
- Type in your admin password if asked.
- Select Utilities > Terminal.
- Copy and paste the following command in Terminal and hit Return. csrutil disable
- Type Y and press Return to confirm your operation. Here, you need to enter your admin password.
- Close Terminal and restart your M1/M2 Mac.
Your M1/M2 Mac is in the state without SIP protection now.
Note: Disabling SIP makes your Mac vulnerable to malware attacks. For security, after performing temporary tasks, you need to reenable SIP as soon as possible.
How to disable SIP without fully Recovery Mode?
If the Recovery Mode is not working or you just don't want to disable SIP in Recovery Mode, you can try this way:
- Shut down your Mac.
- Turn on your Mac and hold the Option key.
- Choose your Recovery Partition and simultaneously press down Command + S to boot your Mac in Console/Terminal mode.
- Enter csrutil disable hit Return.
- Restart your Mac.
How to enable SIP on Mac or M1/M2 Mac?
To reenable SIP on a Mac or M1/M2 Mac, do the following:
- Boot your Mac or M1/M2 Mac in macOS Recovery Mode.
- Open Utilities > Terminal.
- Run the command below:csrutil enable
- Quit Terminal and reboot your Mac.
FAQ about SIP on Mac
By default, SIP is turned on on Mac. To check if SIP is enabled or not, you can go to the Apple menu > About This Mac > System Report. Select the Software tab. At the right pane, check whether the System Integrity Protection column labeled as Disabled or Enabled.
Your Mac will have a higher risk of encountering malware or viruses attack or control.