Troubleshooting ACE installation issues on MacOS 11 (Big Sur)

Currently, MacOS 11 (Big Sur) has a rare but frustrating bug which can cause the “Security & Privacy” preference pane to fail to show the correct prompt during the installation of our ACE component. When this happens, it becomes impossible for a user to properly authorize ACE for installation and use.

System Preferences, not showing an authorization prompt for ACE
An example of a stuck install

This issue has been reported to Apple, and will hopefully be fixed in a forthcoming MacOS update. For now, these instructions will allow you to work around this OS issue.

Manually delete the ACE component files

If you’re unable to proceed with installing or authorizing ACE, start by manually deleting any copy of our component on your Mac. In most cases, this will allow MacOS to present the necessary authorization prompt again. Follow these steps:

  1. Quit System Preferences, as well as any and all apps from Rogue Amoeba that are powered by ACE. (That's Airfoil, Audio Hijack, Loopback, Piezo, and/or SoundSource.)

  2. In the Finder, select the Go to Folder… command from the Go menu.

  3. In the folder field, enter the following location:
    /Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/HAL/

  4. Click the Go button. In the window which appears, you'll see a ACE.driver folder.

  5. Select that folder, and move it to the Trash.

  6. Confirm this action in the Finder when prompted.

  7. Restart your Mac.

  8. Run one of our ACE-powered apps again to be guided through the installation process again.

If the above steps do not cause the authorization prompt to appear properly, you can follow the next set of steps to manually authorize ACE.

Authorizing ACE manually

If MacOS still fails to show the correct prompt to authorize our ACE component for use, you’ll need to manually authorize it. This is done by entering the Mac's Recovery mode.

  1. To enter the Mac's Recovery mode, follow Apple's instructions for Intel or for Apple Silicon.

  2. Once booted into Recovery, open the Terminal utility there and enter the following commands:

    spctl kext-consent disable
    spctl kext-consent add 7266XEXAPM
    spctl kext-consent enable

  3. After entering those commands, restart your Mac. Launch one of our ACE-powered apps again, and you'll be able to proceed through the installation.

Once ACE is properly authorized and installed, you’ll be all set for the future: future updates to the component can be installed, or it can be uninstalled and even reinstalled, without requiring any further system-level authorization.

If you need any further help, please don’t hesitate to contact us directly.