How to update a tool if "The installation path is not writable" error is shown?

The Toolbox App is unable to update tools installed in directories that the current user lacks write permissions for. In such cases, an "Update" button becomes inactive. 


There are two ways to resolve this issue and restore the ability to update the tool.

Reinstall the tool

The recommended method is to reinstall the tool using the Toolbox App.

  1. Open "Other versions" list from the tool actions.
  2. Install your preferred version of the tool.
  3. Check that the new version works well for you.
  4. Uninstall the old tool via the Toolbox App or through the OS.

Make the directory writable

Another solution is to make the installation path writable for the current user. Use it only if you understand the potential security risks of loosening directory permissions.

  1. Open the tool directory specified in the tool settings, e.g. C:\Program Files\JetBrains\GoLand 2023.1.3
  2. Navigate to the parent directory (e.g. C:\Program Files\JetBrains) and modify its permissions so that the current user has write access.
  3. Open the Toolbox App, click on the locknut in the top right corner and check for updates. (Ctrl+R / ⌘+R)
  4. The “Update” button should now become active.
17 out of 24 found this helpful

The first option “Reinstall the tool” worked great for me since I don't have admin rights in the corporate VM and it's really unfair using old versions when I'm paying for the Professional Edition license. NICE HACK, JetBrains!

Today (November 14th, 2023) I tried the first option “Reinstall the tool” using latest version of JetBrains Toolbox App (JetBrains Toolbox, Windows 10, x64

It was able to download and install the latest stable release of PyCharm: PyCharm 2023.2.5 (Professional Edition) Build #PY-232.10227.11, built on November 13, 2023…

Always keep updated your JetBrains Toolbox App!


Another choice: when starting toolbox,run as admin.


I only got this issue since updating to new Sonoma, also AS is installed under /Applicatiopns/Android i have checked permission for current user and its Read&Write and i still cant update, any solutions for this on Mac?


the same problem with Sonoma, with read and write permission i am not able to update android studio


Hi! For macOS, could you try the following workaround? Does it help?
Go to macOS System Settings → Privacy & Security → Full Disk Access. And give it full access to the Toolbox App.


Giving access to full disk works.


The same issue on Linux, Ubuntu 22.04 snap, solved the issue with `sudo snap remove phpstorm --revision <revision number>` This was only happening on the previous version of PhpStorm for me, so I removed it.

Edited by Graeme Dewe

Hi, thank you for Full Disk Access hotfix, but it is also security issue, will be this issue fixed in near future?


Hi Polak Ja. We'll investigate that in TBX-10297.


You Installed the Toolbox as Admin, then you cannot update as user, If you did install as admin you need to run Toolbox as Admin to install updates or remove it and re-install as User, changing the permissions as suggested is actually not ideal but it will fix the issue permanently.


Such a simple workaround for such a frustrating issue. Worked pefectly well. 


in settings, go to “Privacy & Security” → “App Management” 

under “allow the applications below to update or delete other applications”, check “Jetbrains Toolbox” 

This works for me on macOS Sonoma 


Standalone installators asks for elevation on Windows. Why can't Toolbox do the same? For me neither of the suggested options looks user-friendly.


macOS Sonoma 14.2.1: 

  1. System Settings “Privacy & Security” 
  2. “App Management” 
  3. “Allow the applications below to update or delete other applications.” 
  4. Enable for JetBrains Toolbox

Clemens, thanks for sharing this workaround. This issue on macOS is investigated separately. Please track  TBX-10297.

Edited by Ivan Kuzmin

The installation directory of my IntelliJ is writable by my user but for some reason Toolbox app still says directory is not writable.

I even reinstalled toolbox and nope, stays the same.

Frustrating experience.


Chadestioco, could you please create an issue in our bug tracker to investigate?


Suggestion by Karanocave worked! thank you!!

Another choice: when starting toolbox,run as admin.


Please sign in to leave a comment.

Have more questions?

Submit a request
Powered by Zendesk