Disk Utility Missing Features in macOS Sierra and the Solutions


Disk Utility is an essential tool in the Utilities folder to reformat or re-partition a hard drive, mount or create a disc image, repair disk permissions or perform other disk “first aid,” in Mac OS X. In El Capitan, Disk Utility was improved with a more colorful edition providing at-a-glance information of how you use your disk. In the new macOS Sierra system, the new design of Disk Utility is still here. And there is more things improved for Disk Utility in macOS Sierra.

Improvements made to Disk Utility in macOS Sierra

The disk partitioning tool in Sierra is much better than the one in El Capitan, making it easier to tell where the system partition is and how much space is available on the disk. Another improvements made to Disk Utility in macOS 10.12 Sierra is Resizeable Disk Utility. The Disk Utility app in OS X El Capitan cannot be resized. Whether this was intentional or a bug remains unclear, but Apple has fixed this issue in Sierra as the Disk Utility window is once again resizeable.

Disk Utility Interface in macOS Sierra

Disk Utility Missing Feature in macOS Sierra: Repair Disk Permission, and the Solution

The Disk Utility app has long contained the ability to verify and repair disk permissions on a Mac, but in Mac OS X El Capitan, this feature has been removed. And the feature isn’t brought back in macOS Sierra. Since El Capitan, there are some essential changes to the way it handles files. In El Capitan and Sierra, the macOS will automatically repairs file permissions during software updates and changes.

So there is actually no need to repair file permissions any more. Though, it’s still often a useful troubleshooting step for remedy an ailing Mac, it’s a pity that the command line of repair file permissions is has been completely removed from macOS Sierra. If you open up Terminal (Applications > Utilities) and type in:

sudo /usr/libexec/repair_packages –verify –standard-pkgs /

You will get sudo: /usr/libexec/repair_packages: command not found.

Disk Utility Missing Feature in macOS Sierra: Burn CD or DVD disc, and the Solution

Another important Disk Utility missing feature in macOS Sierra is the ability to burn CDs and DVDs from Disk Utility as no Mac now ships with an optical drive.

However, if your Mac has a built-in optical drive, or if you connect an external DVD drive (for example, an Apple USB SuperDrive), you can burn files to CDs and DVDs to share your files with friends, move files between computers, or create backup files. Discs you burn on your Mac can also be used on Windows and other types of computers.

The Solution: Follow these steps to burn a CD or DVD in macOS 10.12 Sierra:

  1. Insert a blank CD or DVD disc.
    You will see an dialog that asks you what you want to do with the disc.
  2. Choose Open Finder from the pop-up menu.
    Open Finder is the default choice unless you’ve changed that default in the CDs & DVDs System Preferences pane.

    Your choices are:

    • Open Finder: Mounts the blank disk in the Finder
    • Open iTunes: Opens iTunes automatically when you insert a blank CD
    • Open Other Application: Lets you choose the application to use when you insert a blank CD or DVD disc
    • Run Script: Runs a specified AppleScript when you insert a blank disc.

    Pick one or click the Ignore button to leave the disk in your drive without doing any of the above or the Eject button to eject the disk.

    If you didn’t ignore or eject the disk, if you want to make whichever action you selected the default for future disks you insert, enable the “Make This Action the Default” check box before you click OK.

  3. Click OK.
    Your blank CD or DVD mounts, and its icon appears in the Sidebar of Finder windows and on the Desktop regardless of whether your Finder Preferences are set that way. The mounted CD or DVD acts just like any other removable disc, but its distinctive icon tells you that it’s a recordable DVD (or CD).
  4. Drag files or folders.
    You can drag the files or folders onto the disc icon in the Sidebar or desktop, or open the disc and drag the files or folders to the disc’s window. Continue adding files or folders until the disc contains all the files you want on it or is full.
  5. Arrange and rename the files
    When the disc is burned, the items on the disc have the same names and locations that they have in the disc window. After the disc is burned, you cannot change the items.
  6. click the Burn button
    When you’re ready to finish (burn) your DVD (or CD), open its disc icon and click the Burn button (below the Search field near the top right).
  7. Choose a speed from the Burn Speed pop-up menu, click the Burn button, and you’re done.
    Select the Save Burn Folder To check box if you think that you may want to burn another copy of this disc someday.

Warning: CD-RW and DVD-RW disks (the RW stands for rewritable) discs rarely work in devices other than your Mac, including CD (audio) players and DVD (video) players. If you burn a music CD or video DVD and intend to watch or listen to it on a device other than your Mac, make sure the disk is a CD-R or DVD-R; NEVER use rewritable CD-RW or DVD-RW disks.

Use the professional DVD Burner for macOS Sierra to Burn DVD disc playable anywhere

Sometimes you may have problems of burn CD or DVD disc in macOS Sierra with the above methods. Even you can successfully burn DVD discs, it is frustrated that they are not playable. In this situation, you can use the professional DVD Burner for macOS Sierra to Burn DVD Disc in macOS Sierra. It can create, make, burn videos to DVDs from popular videos like MP4, MKV, AVI, MPG, MPEG, WMV, MOV, FLV, MTS, MXF, HEVE, YouTube etc. with 90+ free DVD menus on macOS 10.12 Sierra. Moreover, this DVD Maker for macOS Sierra lets you create photo DVD Slideshows with music and edit videos using tools like trim, crop, rotate, watermarks, etc.

16 comments on “Disk Utility Missing Features in macOS Sierra and the Solutions

  1. Anonymous says:

    I’m afraid /usr/libexec/repair_packages disapeared in Sierra?

    • jbvdhove says:

      ls /usr/libexec/ >
      Results from p to s :

      No repair_packages… Could it have disappeared during Sierra install?

    • Shane Davenport says:

      It is gone. The command has been removed.

    • Anonymous says:

      The executable is not there in Sierra Version:10.12 Beta (16A238m)

      If you try to run sudo /usr/libexec/repair_packages –verify –standard-pkgs /

      You get sudo: /usr/libexec/repair_packages: command not found

  2. Shane Davenport says:

    The repair_packages command has completely been removed from Sierra.

  3. Annoyed by Apple says:

    This is such a dumb oversight. I run Mac labs that have many users that learn on these Mac’s. There are many times where I need to do permission repairs. With this feature removed, I guess the labs will be on El Cap until something else is implemented. I don’t fancy using a 3rd party application to do this…

  4. jcb says:

    Hi guys,

    “First, let me tell you that this is for those who know what they are doing on this level; otherwise, you will be screwing up your system.

    I just did a test and copy over the “repair_packages” command from a previous version of OS X.10.12.0 to OS X.10.12.1…And it worked marvelously!

    Please, note, that in order to be able to do that, you will need to use the “Terminal”, in addition to have disabled, first, the “System Integrity Protection” (temporarily).

    Let me know if you need instructions how to do this.

    • jado says:


      I’d love to be able to use some form of a “repair_packages” on my Sierra install as I need to fiddle around with some permissions to get some database tools to function correctly.

      If you could provide some instructions, or at least a pointer on how to get started on this, it would be very much appreciated.

    • Danilo says:

      Jcb I totally need instructions on how to do the whole process.
      due to other problems had to migrate all my files to a newly created user but the process caused issues with user permissions. Now every time i try to move one file have to enter my password.
      All symptoms lead to a user permission issue that cannot be repaired anymore with available tools

    • shokol8 says:

      hello i’ll pleased to know how you did? I moved my home folder to an external hard drive due to storage, and I need to repair permission, because I can’t log in anymore now, it did work for a bit tho, then keychain started messing up, and then no long after I could not log in anymore.

    • EB says:

      Yes, please post instructions on how to repair disk permissions in Sierra

    • DJ Bear says:

      JCB, I would like to request the instructions on how to copy over the “repair_packages” from a prev ver of OS X .


  5. zargnut says:

    Not sure if this helps… Was just troubleshooting a timemachine fail issue… and as part of that on Mac Sierra, they executed this on my mac. Wondering if they are just playing a shell game with these functions?

    diskutil resetUserPermissions /’id -u’

  6. anon says:

    I am just unable to write DVD on Sierra. Even with Toast. The data on the DVD is readable only on the computer where the disc was written. WTF?

  7. Kevin says:

    What about the debug menu? Can it be enabled in 10.12?

  8. Kay says:

    This is new!

    diskutil resetUserPermissions / `id -u`


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