Home > Automator, Mac OS X > Recovering Automator workflows from Automator applications

Recovering Automator workflows from Automator applications

Every so often, source code for an application gets lost, mislaid or not given to a customer. In that case, the application’s user may need to do a lot of work to decompile the application and see if the source code can be recovered from the application itself.

I recently had a colleague ask about a similar situation with an Automator application, where they had the Automator application itself but didn’t have access to the Automator workflow that created it.

After some testing, here’s how we were able to access the workflow using only the compiled application.

1. Save a copy of the Automator application to a convenient location.

Screen Shot 2015 08 01 at 8 16 21 AM

2. Right-click on the application and select Show Package Contents.

Screen Shot 2015 08 01 at 8 16 47 AM

3. Save a copy of Contents/document.wflow to a convenient location.

Screen Shot 2015 08 01 at 8 17 00 AM

4. Rename document.wflow to preferred_file_name_here.workflow.

5. When prompted, confirm that you want to change the extension from .wkflow to .workflow.

Screen Shot 2015 08 01 at 8 17 28 AM

At this point, you should be able to open the newly-renamed .workflow document in Automator and examine the workflow.

Screen Shot 2015 08 01 at 8 17 42 AM

 

Screen Shot 2015 08 01 at 8 17 56 AM

Update 8-1-2015: Steve Hayman pointed out that there’s an even easier way. For details, see below the jump.

Anthony Reimer concurred:

Categories: Automator, Mac OS X
  1. August 1, 2015 at 8:11 pm

    looking for a way to automate daily calendar printing from outlook. curiously tedious using the recorder and clicking around, and im not sure if its the smartest way…brain implant nospaces at outlook dot com if your bored! thanks! and appreciated…

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