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OpenSesame crashes with MacOS Big Sur

edited November 2020 in OpenSesame

I recently updated my MacOS from Catalina to Big Sur. Now, OpenSesame still opens but crashes after a few seconds and I have to force it to close. In Catalina, all worked just fine.

Has anyone had similar issues and anyone any suggestions on how to fix it?

Thanks in advance!

I'm running on the latest version of OpenSesame.


  • edited November 2020

    Hi @IngaSvea , I got the same problem and have no idea yet how to fix it, so would be happy as well if someone had an idea :)

  • Hi @IngaSvea and @charlieaux

    I usually wait a few months before upgrading to the newest MacOS versions myself because also Apple's software is often bug-ridden at the beginning of new releases. I sadly thus cannot check yet what is the cause of this crash. So for now I think using the app version of opensesame will be difficult or is even out of the question.

    If you cannot wait and really need to use OpenSesame on Big Sur, you could try installing OpenSesame from source. For instructions see: Before you can follow these steps, you also need to install the anaconda python distribution on your system:

    This installation process thus involves some extra steps, but in the end OpenSesame runs a lot more stable (on Macs at least) if run from source. I hope this helps.

    Buy Me A Coffee

  • Hi @Daniel,

    thanks for your advice and your help! I just went threw all your steps, but sadly it doesn't work, OpenSesame still freezes. The terminal is sending this warning :

    399:SubprocessManager:60:WARNING] main process is alive but unresponsive

    Aaargggh it's so annoying, i wish I could travel into the past and stop myself from installing the softwareupdate. Apparently Big Sur doesn't work with Python 3.7 or 3.8. Some guys on the internet said that 3.6 and 3.9 would be ok. Do you think it would be an option to download the OpenSesame Version 3.2 (i think i read it works with Python 3.6).

    Thanks and wishing you all a nice weekend!

  • edited November 2020

    If you use anaconda or miniconda, you can select the python version to use in a virtual environment, so you can also try to install and run opensesame after creating a virtualenv for python 3.9:

    conda create -n py39 python=3.9

    If you then proceed with the steps as before you should install everything with python 3.9, although I doubt that all dependency packages will be available for this python version already. Trying won't hurt though.

    Buy Me A Coffee

  • Hi, could you try out the python 3.9 beta version that can be found at

    I just want to know if this runs on Big Sur as the problem apparently was related to python 3.7 on which OpenSesame normally runs.

    If it works I will create a new package that also includes the osf and osweb extensions as I forgot these for the beta.

    Buy Me A Coffee

  • Hi,

    I can confirm these issues on macOS Big Sur. Sadly, the OpenSesame python 3.9 release does not fix this issue either. When building myself, I also get "[[...]748:SubprocessManager:60:WARNING] main process is alive but unresponsive".

    Is there anything I can do to help further debugging? I quite depend on OpenSesame and it would be very nice if it was made functional again on the new macOS.

    Kind regards, Isaiah

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