Clean install on Mac OS and saving Preferences

I am about to do a clean install on my Mac and wanted to check whether I need to save any preferences and how I go about doing that. Most of the things I have changed are related to text formatting but also things like line spacing. I use a blank template (attached) that I have created as the basis for my documents (maybe not the most efficient way of doing it I know) but I would like to know what is saved with that document and whether I need to save individual preferences as well - for example, the customised TAB symbol at the beginning of the tablature stave. Any help gratefully received.

Default Template 2023.dorico (612.8 KB)

Two things first of all:

  1. Erasing and reinstalling the OS is almost never necessary. From Big Sur onwards, the OS is on a cryptographically signed, read-only volume, separate from the rest of the disk. So it can’t normally be modified, and it won’t boot if it has been altered.
    You can delete all user data (e.g. everything apart from the OS) from the System Settings in recent OS versions, without having to erase anything in Disk Utility.

  2. The supposed benefits from a clean install are inversely proportional to the amount of stuff that you restore. If you put everything back, then there’s no point at all! :rofl:
    If you’re going to be selective about what you restore, then there’s an argument that you could just delete the stuff you’re not planning to restore, and save a lot of time and effort.

Dorico stores your saved default Options (Engraving, Layout, Notation, Playback, Note Input), application preferences, Paragraph Styles, Playback Templates, etc, etc, in:

[user]/Library/Application Support/Steinberg/Dorico 5/

If you want to restore Dorico to just how you left it, then you’ll need to copy over the contents of this folder from your backup.

Any given Dorico file will contain ‘complete’ Options, and you could just open your file and click “Save As Default” in each of the “Options” dialogs.

Don’t forget the Library Manager, which will show you the settings of any document, and compare them to the current or factory defaults. (Or indeed to another file.)


Thanks for your reply. I will have a think about the clean install options. There are other considerations that have made me consider a more radical solution. However, I can’t find the options in the Dorico folder in the above path. It is completely empty? See attached.

Screenshot.pdf (342.9 KB)

it looks like you’re in the wrong library.
go to /Users/yourcomputer/Library/Application Support/Steinberg/Dorico 4

I have tried that as well. There is nothing there!

And how about /Users/your user name/Library/Application Support/Steinberg/Dorico 5
where you have to replace ‘your user name’ with your user name on that machine

Okay. I have found it by going through the GO menu and holding down the Option key. Do I need to save everything in this folder? See attached. Thanks.

Obviously not the log files. AutoSave also not, the rest better keep.

And did you make changes to the VST2 search path or the VST2 Whitelist, then you also need to save at some other place, that is /Users/you user name/Library/Preferences/Dorico 5 AudioEngine
Save the VST2PluginsSearchPaths/.xml and the VST2PluginsWhitelist.txt from there

Okay. Many thanks for your help.