Mac OS Big Sur Preference error when trying to launch security preferences to Allow System Extension or Kernel extension


We are seeing an issue with security preferences that it is has an error when trying launch security preferences to allow system extension or kext .

We have tried deleting these plists
But didn't help.

This is happening on beta7 on Intel systems and also on Developer Transition Kit too.

24 Replies

Looks like it's fixed in Beta 9! Google Drive File Stream installs and Security & Privacy doesn't crash allowing me to allow it.
Seems to be fixed in Beta 9.
This happened with me when i installed Parallels Desktop. After I Uninstalled it, The problem went away.

Mac OS Big Sur Preference error when trying to launch security
preferences to Allow System Extension or Kernel extension

This looks like the known bug discussed in this thread.

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Quinn “The Eskimo!” @ Developer Technical Support @ Apple
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Same problem
Reported Bug Id : 8736010

Still, issue exists with Big Sur Beta 8(20A5374i), verified today...!
So I've had this problem since Beta 6. It does seem to be an issue with Gatekeeper, but it very well may have started with VMWare Fusion 12 for me as well. Let's get crazy now. This only happens on my two 2019 Mac mini's. Not my 2019 MacBook Air. I use one Mini for work and need a Windows VM so I did install VMWare Fusion 12 to test that. I don't remember if that was when this all started or not. But I did install it on both Mini's. That may not be a coincidence. I have had some limited success, however. Here's what I do (So far about 75% success rate):

Wait for Gatekeeper to time out and just LET. IT. GO. (I usually go do my grocery shopping or watch a movie.)
Reboot the machine and log in with my admin account.
Open System Preferences >> Security & Privacy and unlock it immediately. (Leave it open. Once that PrefPane locks you'll need to find another movie to watch or you'll stress eat all your groceries.)
Re-run the installer or application that will request access to something.

At this point I've noticed something different. The dialog box I get still has the Open System Preference button, but the Cancel button has now been replaced with OK. I assume because the PrefPane is open and unlocked. I click OK and it gives the application the access it needs and I can verify in Security & Privacy that it is in fact there. Now my application runs as expected.

I haven't had time to do any in depth detective work. I will get to in the next day or so. I'll be sure to come back and let you all know what I find out.
Hey i found i fix that worked for me!

Turn off your computer entirely, wait until the screen is black then turn it back on. While you press the power button hold down command, control, "P" and "R", until you are back in your desktop. Then it should work.

I'm on beta 8 so I don't know if it will work for everyone.

hope this helps
I've had the same problem since this morning, anyone have a fix?

We've seen this a bunch of times as well. Usually removing any staged System Extensions and rebooting will fix it, but it seems to happen randomly.
In my experience it breaks with both VMWare tools and with Google Drive File Stream. I tried upgrading a physical machine from Catalina that had GDFS installed and I got into a reboot loop upon boot. After about 4 tries I got a message about a kernel panic keeping the system from starting and it said it disabled it. The system then did start but GDFS kept crashing as well as the Security & Privacy preferences window as reported here. After uninstalling GDFS I can open S&P Preferences.

On a fresh VM, after attempting VMWare tools install, I had the preference page crash. On another fresh VM, GDFS install induced the same behavior as the physical machine upgrade above.

I see the same issue reported on this site as a new Beta 7 bug:

Haven't tried Beta 8 but it's discouraging that it has been reported to not have fixed the bug.

I tested with Beta 8 and the issue is still there. This is the crash stack trace:

dyld3 mode
Crashing on exception: The window has been marked as needing another Layout Window pass, but it has already had more Layout Window passes than there are views in the window.
<NSWindow: 0x7fcf586a6400> 0xffffffff (-1) {{173, 220}, {480, 348}} Window en

Application Specific Backtrace 1:
0 CoreFoundation 0x00007fff205f9bdf _exceptionPreprocess + 242
1 libobjc.A.dylib 0x00007fff20219469 objc
exceptionthrow + 48
2 CoreFoundation 0x00007fff205f9a43 +[NSException raise:format:] + 189
3 AppKit 0x00007fff230429c3 -[NSWindow(NSDisplayCycle)
postWindowNeedsLayoutUnlessPostingDisabled] + 1707

mjg415, well it is not 'fixed' in beta 8 (just released)...

I think mine has to do with a kext install as part of VMWare Fusion 12 - tools (I tried installing it in a VM on my faster machine rather than on my slower laptop which I currently have the beta on)... the install worked, but because of the lack of tools the resolution and size of the screen ... is very very bad... oh well, will have to wait for GM release to install on this machine I guess -- back to my laptop for beta.
For me, it seems tied to Gatekeeper. If an application or kernel extension needs to be allowed, it often seems to break and give that Security & Privacy error every time I attempt to go in. Clearing out the preferences files (via defaults delete or otherwise) mentioned by others doesn't help -- nor does rebooting or logging in as a different user -- but leaving it alone long enough for Gatekeeper to time out on those allow requests seems to resolve it. Unfortunately, that means you can't open any apps that are prompting for it or add any kexts, it seems.
I have gotten some to be allowed because it doesn't always seem to happen. Hoping they fully fix it in the next beta.