garage band deployment

Download all of the GarageBand / Logic Pro X Content Loops

Back in November, I had a conversation over Twitter with @TechGrlTweeter about how to capture and deploy the GarageBand loop installers. Now some Mac admins prefer to use network packet capture tools such as “Charles Web Proxy” however the method I suggested uses no additional applications and requires a lower technical skill level to do.

Content Loops?

Ok I may not have started clear enough. A little ago, Apple stopped shipping iLife suite installers for GarageBand, iWeb, iDVD, iPhoto and iMovie and instead utilised the Mac App Store for these products, as well as for Logic Pro X. To minimise the download size of GarageBand and Logic Pro X Applications, the content / music loops were separated.

When these Applications are first launched, they try to download and install the content, with this totally over 10s of GBs of data (especially for Logic)! Additionally, Apple will occasionally release new content packages, which are then downloaded the next time the Application is launched.

In environments that manage their Mac devices (particularly Education departments) they will need to deploy these additional content packages with GarageBand and Logic Pro, otherwise users face a lengthy wait on first launch. Not an ideal user experience!

The question is how to catch and include these content packages. With a monolithic image, this is simple as the loops can be downloaded and included in the image. With a modular image, or if Apple release an updated content package, you need to use another technique.

Capturing all of the Content Packages

In the examples, I have used a fresh version of Mavericks 10.9.5 and an un-launched copy of GarageBand, but the process is almost identical for Logic Pro X and for when Apple releases an additional content package.

1. Launch GarageBand or Logic Pro X. You should either be prompted to download the new content or it will start automatically.
capturing content packages garage band
2. This will take some time, especially with Logic. Go make a cup of tea / coffee and generally leave the Mac to one side. Dependant on the size and number of content packages, and the speed of your connection, it may even be advisable to leave it running overnight.

downloading installing garage band

3. Eventually the progress message under the loading bar will change from an ETA to “Installing…” and an authentication window will appear asking for administration details. DO NOT FILL THIS IN AND DO NOT CLOSE THIS WINDOW!

installing garage band

4. Move the authentication window and the GarageBand / Logic Pro window to one side and go to your Finder application.
5. In Finder, select “Go” then “Go to Folder…”

authenticate garage band

6. In the box that appears, type “/var/folders/” and click “Go”. This path is case sensitive but you can use tab-completion to fill it in.

var folders garage band

7. You will see any number of folders here, all with seemingly random two letter names. We need to organise these by size, which by default you won’t have enabled.

8. In the Finder, click “View” then “Show View Options”.

view options garage band

9. The View Options will now appear. Tick the “Calculate all sizes” check box. To avoid having to do this at each level, I suggest clicking the “Use as Default” button.

calculate all sizes

10. Once we’ve got the views sorted, we are going to need to drill down via the largest directory sizes to find what we’re after. I’ll show you what I had in my example but it will be very unlikely your directories will be named the same so you may need to go solo through this step.

a. My first level was “lq”.

directories garage band lq

b. My next one was “fwf625f54h52zc0vm3htj1yc0000gn”

directories garage band fw

c. Next I had just “C”

directories garage band c

d. Now this is where we should all be in the same location! Find “” (or “…” if you’re grabbing Logic Pro content packages).

directories garage band 10

11. Open this directory and you should see an overly large one, in the example this is called “”. Open this.

directories music apps

12. Inside this there will be a directory called “”. Open this (nearly there…)

directories audio content download

13. Inside this last directory is another called (in the example’s case) “lp10_ms3_content_2013”. Open this.

last directory

14. And hey presto! There are your content packages, all neat and ready to be pushed out.

all content packages

15. Organise it by size (or type) and grab all them all (14 in this case)!

organise by type


Now I have to be honest and say that I did not figure this out myself but rather by ‘standing on the shoulders of giants’. I found the information around a year or two ago and for the life of me, I cannot remember exactly where. Other than it was either:

So if anyone finds out whereabouts it’s mentioned, please comment below and I’ll update the blog.


I hope this help anyone else who has to push out content packages to find and grab these as needed. This has worked for me for Mavericks and Yosemite so looks good so far!

As always, if you have any questions, queries or comments, let us know below and I’ll try to respond to and delve into as many as I can.

31 Replies to "Download all of the GarageBand / Logic Pro X Content Loops"

  • Thanks for this post. It’s very relevant to what I am working on at the moment. I have been wondering too if maybe we could build an autopkg library to download and add this stuff to Munki as it seems that it is possible to obtain all of the required links. I think also that there is a plist file someone with all the links.

    Recently I (sadly) but hand used the links on this page: (seems to be down right now) to download every pkg and one by one add them to our Munki repo. That was great students were about to run logic and the content was already there. But with the recent update to Logic Pro X there is new content that students are being prompted to install. So I need to track down those links or maybe use your method above.

    Does this sound plausible though… track down that plist with all the links to the additional content(assuming that this was recently updated)… write and autopkg recipe for each one… and a script to run all 60+ recipes at once?

    • Filip

      need you help for something else, can you help me out with ” How to put a cck.xpi in the Firefox-setup, can you e-mail me ”

  • Filip

    Dear ,Darren Wallace

    I need you help for something else, can you help me out with ” How to put a cck.xpi in the Firefox-setup, can you e-mail me ”


    Filip Stanojevic

  • Darren Wallace

    Hey Morgan.

    Thanks for the reply. I’m glad it helped you out!

    There are a few scripts floating around they can also grab some of the files that are certainly worth looking at (unfortunately I can’t remember where they are). You may be able to incorporate them into an AutoPKG recipe.


  • Nigel Griffiths

    Another method to get to the logic or garageband download folders is to turn on the debug menu in the Appstore using this command in terminal:-

    defaults write ShowDebugMenu -bool true

    Launch the Appstore and in the debug menu there is an option to “Show Download Folder”

    This opens the folder containing and, bypassing steps 4-10d in the process.

    Again, I found this on a site a while ago and can’t remember which one. Probably JAMF Nation 🙂

  • Hi Nigel,

    Although you are correct, this will only grab the GarageBand / Logic Pro X apps but not all of the additional Audio content that will download on first use from within these apps themselves.


  • JakNZ

    There’s an easier way to get into your Temp directory to find the GarageBand content. Run this from Terminal:
    open $TMPDIR/../C

  • Kevin

    Has Anyone been able to deploy these loops to multiple Macs, via Casper or some management ?

    Trying to deploy this loops to Student macs that do not have admin rights for Logic Pro X is a nightmare.

    • Darren Wallace

      Hi Kevin,

      I’ve successfully deployed the loops to Macs using both Munki and Casper at a number of sites.

      The key points are:
      – do not repackage these installers
      – they MUST be deployed on the booted system (e.g. If using Casper Imaging or DeployStudio, they must be configured for a postponed or ‘on restart’ installation)
      – there will be between 2 and 4 ‘batches’ of loops to install. Each batch must be installed in the order they were obtained.
      E.g. First time you launch the app, a batch will download. These are batch 1 and must be installed first. Second time you launch the app, a second lot may be downloaded. These are batch 2 and must be installed 2nd. Lastly, you can go to the menu bar and select ‘download additional loops’. These will be batch 3 and must be installed 3rd.
      – updates to both GarageBand and Logic Pro X have in the past required more loops to be downloaded added so also bare this in mind.

      I hope these additional pointers help!


  • Alan Smith

    HI Darren

    Thanks so much for this post, lots of information for me to consider.

    I have been trying to find a solution to installing Logic Pro X + all Additional Content onto a Lab of Macs. I’ve been using Casper’s Composer app and whenever I deploy the packages, there always seems to be more content to download.

    Is this related to the ‘batches’ of loops to install?

    The most recent attempt saw the additional content installed but then when launched it said they were ‘outdated’!!

    As I said lots to consider and I’m sure I’ll be back with some questions when I head back to work!



    • Darren Wallace

      Hi Alan,

      As I mentioned to Kevin, I can’t recommend strongly enough to not use Composer to capture these loops.

      Composer has its place and this is one of those areas that will cause you more problems then the task already has!

      For Logic especially, there are a huge amount of loops (from memory a few hundred!) that need to be installed.

      If you find it’s not working, you’ve got two options:
      1) Wipe the Mac clean, install Logic, and refollow the steps to get a complete final list with copies of the installers
      2) Use Hannes Juutilainen’s script to download all the loops installers.

      One last point, make sure that all of the loops are set to a postponed / at reboot install, otherwise you’ll have other issues.

      Hope these points help!


  • Thomas Way


    This info is still evergreen and I’m glad I found it. Previously, I tried simply copying the Garageband folder in Library/Application Support and the prefs/container files I found in my Home folder from my original installation to the new installation, but that didn’t work.

    I tried your method in the blog post above and everything works but I’m stuck at the final step, number 15.

    Now that I have all the Garageband files, I want to install them on another computer that has Garageband installed (but which has not been launched for the first time) so that I can avoid the long wait. I am in a rural area with DSL only so downlaods are particularly slow.

    Where do you put the download pkg files? Is one of them a meta installer or do you have to install them one by one?

    I’m probably missing the obvious solution staring me in the face, but any help would be greatly appreciated.

    One final question: there is also a secondary 14gb mega download of extra loops, etc. Does this same method work for that?

    • Darren Wallace

      Hi Thomas,

      Thanks for your message and I’m glad you’ve got good use out of it.

      Typically, I’d load these into a Mac Management solution to push these installers out. It sounds like you’re a home user (not that there’s anything wrong with that!), so what you’ll have to do is run each installer one at a time in the order you obtained them. Once complete, this should then work (as long as there are no new loops released since you grabbed your ones).

      For your second question, the same method should work for any further loops packages that are needed.

      Good Luck!


    • Darren Wallace

      Hi Asparagus,

      Thanks for your comment, I’m afraid I don’t understand what you mean.

      The next steps would be 6 onwards.

      If you can explain a bit more how you are stuck I should be able to help.

      Otherwise sign up for the free Mac Admins Slack and we can chat better on there (I’m daz_wallace).



  • Michael

    This is useful, but in my case, I already have everything installed (including the additional 30Gb). Now I have another mac with Logic in it. Is there a way to transfer these additional sound loops so that Logic can identify them as I don’t have fast internet.

    Thanks as I await you reply

    • Darren Wallace

      Hi Michael,

      Thanks for your comment. To be honest, this guide is aimed more at Mac Administrators managing multiple devices rather than single users.

      You could try copying around the related files and folders in /Libray but to be honest, that’s asking for trouble / things to break.

      I’m afraid I can only suggest kicking the download off overnight, or visit another location of someone with faster internet!

      Good Luck!


  • Juan Faerman

    Hi Darren.
    This may sound a little bit off-topic, but not thaaat much (to tell the truth: you seem to be the only one in the whole web to know how to solve this problem):

    I have downloaded (and installed) all the Garageband and Logic Pro libraries, plus a couple of Jam Packs.
    They all work well, but the Garageband instrument library tree it shows 15 categories, being the last one “Legacy Content” (or something like that, as my home language is Spanish), which splits in two (Logic and Garageband) and each one of those in several others (which isn’t big deal and maybe natural).

    As I said, let’s suppose having a “Logic” folder isn’t a problem, but under Legacy/Garageband things get nastier: as I have almost every instrument category folder duplicated… but with different instruments inside.
    That is, under Legacy –> Garageband –> I have almost instrument group twice.
    In brief: counting “root” level, I have 4 folders of each instrument (e.g. “bass”).
    Is there a way to organize this so as to have just one folder for each instrument category?
    Once again: priority is merging the duplicate folders under Legacy/Garageband/

    Many many many thanks in advance and sorry for all the mess.



    • Darren Wallace

      Hi Juan,

      Thanks for your comment. I’m afraid I don’t think you can re-organise those items as those a categories provided direct from Apple. The only method I can suggest for clearing them up is to uninstall the ‘Legacy’ loops from within GarageBand (if indeed you can).

      I’m afraid to say that I actually very rarely use GarageBand / Logic, only deploy it for customers, so there may indeed be methods for this that I am unaware of.

      Good Luck!


  • Jake

    Hi Darren,
    Is there a way to get the packages for all the available sounds?


    • Darren Wallace

      Hi Jake,

      Thanks for the comment. I’m afraid I don’t understand your question as this post outlines exactly how to obtain the installer packages for the music loops for Garageband and Logic?



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