I guess I blogged too soon about "mission accomplished."

I tried to post G'night moon with the automation I'd put together that worked in the Traffic post, and it didn't work.

But first, an update...

I received the 128GB of RAM in the mail yesterday, and I installed it last night. Hilarity ensued.

It took three boot attempts to finally get the iMac to boot into the login screen. After logging in, the computer pauses for what feels like minutes, I haven't timed it yet, before getting to Finder, and then running all the stuff that runs at startup. I've been through this drill many times now, and it doesn't improve. I guess it's doing some kind of RAM check or some other diagnostic that takes an inordinate amount of time compared to booting with 64GB.

But once it's up and running, it reports it has 128GB of RAM and seems otherwise content.

I don't reboot often, usually, so I decided it was something I can live with.

Then I tried to do the G'night moon post.

The last part of the automation runs an Automator app called Sync Server, which is a "Watch me do" recorded script that selects the Forklift favorites menubar item. This automation ran correctly on Wednesday. Today, it failed. The cursor moved under app control and tried to click the menu bar items, but seemingly failed and then wouldn't release the mouse cursor. Drag the mouse and it would drag itself right back up to where that final menubar item was supposed to be. Click-it, don't click-it, makes no difference. Little gear spinning in the menubar. Did the command-tab thing hoping I could get to Sync Server and just do a CMD-Q or Esc or something... It's not an app that appears in command-tab.

Ugh. Press the power button, hit return for Shut Down.

Restart, and wait.

While I was waiting, I used the 13" M1 MBP to search for some clue on Automator not releasing the mouse cursor. No joy there.

Once everything was back up and running, I launched Automator and opened Sync Server. Tried to run it from the main run command, just to see if it would run in Automator. Same thing, trapped the cursor. Did CMD-Q to quit Automator, thinking that would release the cursor. Get a dialog that there's an automation running with two buttons, the left one being Quit or "Quit anyway," the right one being the default and selected by pressing Return, "Cancel."


I took a stab at various key combinations with Return to see if I could make it select the non-default, since I couldn't use the mouse. No joy. Not saying there isn't one, there are a million of these little tricks hidden in Mac OS, but I wasn't going to go look for one just then, so hit the power button again.

Minutes later, back into Automator. Deleted the actions, re-recorded it. Ran it from Automator. Ran fine.

Saved it, ran just the Sync Server app and it reported it didn't have permission and I needed to give it permission in Accessibility in System Settings. Well, it does have permission in Accessibility in System Settings. Ugh!

Figured I'd log out and log back in and see if that reconciled something. Nope, same error. Logging out and in is a lot faster than re-booting though.

So, what worked on Wednesday, doesn't work on Friday. What works in Automator, doesn't work outside of Automator. Sigh.

There are probably better ways to do what I want to do anyway, so I guess I'll look into those. But wow, this hit-or-miss thing with Mac OS Ventura and automation is frustrating. I did open the recorded actions and looked at the associated UI script events and that all looked benign. No clues there.

It's a mystery. I know Automator has something of a less than sterling reputation. While it doesn't do a lot, the things it does do, it seems to do them well. Except "Watch me do." And something in Apple's security features is bumping into it as well. Beyond my pay-grade.

Originally posted at Nice Marmot 09:51 Friday, 21 July 2023