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macos notarization status


Hi folks!

Apple is changing how the lack of notarization looks like to users on
Catalina starting tomorrow.  It is not clear what will happen when
folks download new versions of KiCad after tonight.

For the past two months I've been working hard--I've got a tech demo
locally here that has signatures and notarization on macOS, but it's
not ready for primetime.  For instance, I have removed the other .apps
and just have kicad.app.  There's changes I made to kicad that
probably belong in kicad-mac-builder--and, well, let's just say it's a
tech demo :)

The main things that remain are:
1) Figure out a good solution for the symlinked .apps.  Our current
strategy of symlinking into the kicad.app bundle does not work with
macOS signing.  I think the current contender is to copy instead of
symlink.  I am not sure how much extra space that will take up but
it's a good try.  This is definitely something I can do, but since
it's something that can be done on its own, it's a prime contender for
someone looking to help out.

2) Another issue is that there are strict rules about where in the
bundle code, data, and executable non-Mach-O files live.  For
instance, one of the signing blockers is ngspice, because it mingles
scripts and Mach-O binaries and then we put them in Contents/Plugins.
For more details, see
The big change for KiCad itself is where the Python scripts are
stored--I've fixed this in my branch, but now I have to go through and
audit and fixup our partner packages, like OCE/OCC and ngspice.  If
you want to help with this, it's going to be a big job but I'm willing
to put in the time to teach if you're willing to put in the time to
learn :)

I was really hoping I could get this done before Apple turned up the
enforcement on notarization, but that's going to happen.  After
tomorrow, it'll be clearer what Apple is doing.  There might be some
quick changes to make that will improve things for our users without
getting all of this done.

Adam Wolf

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