Fix ‘locking EACCES’ error in npm on OS X

Published on August 5, 2015 in How-tos
Read time: 1 min

You were developing and suddenly got this:

npm WARN locking Error: EACCES, open '/Users/francesco/.npm/_locks/lodash-df494fd4c4f1a084.lock'
npm WARN locking     at Error (native)
npm WARN locking  /Users/francesco/.npm/_locks/lodash-df494fd4c4f1a084.lock failed { [Error: EACCES, open '/Users/francesco/.npm/_locks/lodash-df494fd4c4f1a084.lock']
npm WARN locking   errno: -13,
npm WARN locking   code: 'EACCES',
npm WARN locking   path: '/Users/francesco/.npm/_locks/lodash-df494fd4c4f1a084.lock' }
npm ERR! Darwin 13.4.0
npm ERR! argv "node" "/usr/local/bin/npm" "install" "lodash"
npm ERR! node v0.12.0
npm ERR! npm  v2.5.1

npm ERR! Attempt to unlock /Users/francesco/npmtest/node_modules/lodash, which hasn't been locked
npm ERR!
npm ERR! If you need help, you may report this error at:
npm ERR!     <>

npm ERR! Please include the following file with any support request:
npm ERR!     /Users/francesco/npmtest/npm-debug.log

Quick fix? Just run this:

sudo chmod -R g+w ~/.npm/_locks

But this is not be a permanent fix. If it is not related to an issue with a package you’re trying to install, it usually happens because npm permissions are messed up. Maybe because you installed node from your system package manager.

check if you installed them via macports running

$ port installed | grep node
$ port installed | grep npm

if that is your case, you need to remove those in first place

1 - get a list of globally installed node packages

$ npm -g list --depth=0 > node_installed.txt

2 - remove npm and node

$ sudo port uninstall node@your_version_here
$ sudo port uninstall npm@your_version_here

3 - check for node_modules to be deleted

$ /opt/local/lib/node_modules

then download and install npm and node via the official installer from


You better follow this guide, to get a clean node and npm installation.

Thanks for reading.


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