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st: re: ado file location in Macintosh OS X

From   Kit Baum <>
Subject   st: re: ado file location in Macintosh OS X
Date   Sat, 3 Feb 2007 08:40:22 -0500

Michael said

This message brings to mind one of my pet peeves with the way Stata
installs on a Mac: by placing the directory for PLUS / PERSONAL /
OLDPLACE ado files in the user's home directory, one of Apple's
guidelines concerning the location of application installed files --
"Don't Pollute User Space" -- is violated.
IMHO, the following is more consistent with Apple's guidelines for
the file system:

PLUS: ~/Library/Application Support/Stata/ado/plus/
PERSONAL: ~/Library/Application Support/Stata/ado/personal/
OLDPLACE: ~/Library/Application Support/Stata/ado/

I agree with Michael's point, and well-behaved third-party apps such as BBEdit indeed put their stuff into the user's personal Library/ Application Support directory. I imagine that the reason that Stata does not is a (possibly foolish) consistency with other flavors of Unix and Linux on which Stata runs. There is no equivalent in a standard Unix or Linux filesystem to a personal Library/App Support directory. The closest approximation is a .hidden directory, and if you have the console version of Stata involved, you will have a .stata9 directory as I do in ~. But a hidden directory (really hidden, not just hidden from the Finder) is not a handy place for unwashed users to examine. So I suppose when Stata was ported to OS X (the first multi-user version of Mac OS), they decided to parallel the Unix/Linux convention of creating ~/ado, even though Steve Jobs disapproved.

But as Michael suggests there is nothing preventing a Mac OS X user from redefining PLUS, PERSONAL, OLDPLACE; she must just be careful to note that if she works on a different Mac OS X machine the -net install- files will not be in the customized location.


Kit Baum, Boston College Economics
An Introduction to Modern Econometrics Using Stata:

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