Things Needs a Library to Continue

If you’ve just migrated your data via Apple’s Migration Assistant, you might be unable to launch Things.

Apple’s Migration Assistant can sometimes incorrectly restore file and folder permissions when transferring data to a new Mac (or restoring a Mac), so you might see this error when you try to launch Things:

“Things needs a Library to continue. You may locate an existing Things library or create a new empty one.”

Here’s how to fix the problem:

  1. On your Mac, go to the /Applications folder and open the TextEdit app.
  2. Create a new document.
  3. In the menu bar at the top of your screen, click Format > Make Plain Text. (If you don’t see that option, you’re already using plain text.)
  4. Copy the following command and paste it into your document:
    sudo chown -R username "/Users/username/Library/Containers/com.culturedcode.ThingsMac"
  5. Now go to /Applications/Utilities and open Terminal.
  6. Copy the following command and paste it into Terminal: whoami
  7. Hit ↩ Return to execute the command.
  8. The next line after the command will show your macOS user name. Select it and hit ⌘ Cmd+C to copy.
  9. Return to the text document you created in step 2.
  10. Select username and hit ⌘ Cmd+V to insert your own user name in its place.
  11. Double-check the command you just edited – you must have inserted your user name twice.
  12. Copy the entire command from TextEdit, and paste it into Terminal.
  13. Hit ↩ Return to execute the command.

You might be prompted to enter your Mac user account’s password – that’s entirely normal (you are providing the password to macOS, not to us). Note that Terminal will not display the password as you enter it – just keep typing normally and hit ↩ Return when you’re done.

You should now be able to launch Things.

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