Apple’s developers have now been introduced to the company’s new Developer ID program, and have been asked to ready their applications in anticipation of the program’s launch. For those unaware, the Developer ID program comes alongside OS X Mountain Lion’s new Gatekeeper security feature that prevents users from launching apps that haven’t been signed by identified developers or installed through the Mac App Store. The Developer ID system allows Apple to distribute certificates to registered developers which they can sign their apps with in order to avoid being blocked by Gatekeeper.
Until OS X Mountain Lion arrives, we’ll all still be able to run apps that haven’t been signed or installed via the Mac App Store by default, and even when it does get here we can always go into System Preferences > Security & Privacy and change the default settings to allow all apps (signed or not) to launch. While some people may choose to leave Gatekeeper’s default settings as they are, I’d assume most will be altering them to allow unsigned apps as well (as I certainly will when the time comes). While Gatekeeper is meant as a method of preventing malware from launching on a user’s Mac, it gives Apple a bit too much control for my liking.
Developers hoping to get their apps properly signed in time for Mountain Lion should follow Apple’s instructions for registering in the Developer ID program. The company also provided an introductory tutorial that developers should check out in case of any questions or concerns.