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I can't figure out how to install addon from blender 2.73 onto my imac. I go into addons in user pref. I enable addons.
I select /users/me/library/applicationsupport/blender/2.73/scripts/addons/
and then click install from file. And I get:

error! source file is in the addon search path: '/users/moi/library/application support/blender/2.73/scripts/addons/'

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    $\begingroup$ If it's in .../blender/2.73/scripts, that means it's already installed. The error message is saying that it cant install it because it's already there. $\endgroup$ – gandalf3 Jan 21 '15 at 1:21
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Blender searches for addons in three places, one of which is /Users/{user}/Library/Application Support/Blender/2.72/. If your addon is already there, then it is "installed".
The install from file button in the user preferences essentially just copies files into this directory.

If you don't see the addon listed in the user preferences, then there may be something wrong with the addon. Try starting blender from a terminal and see if there are any error messages.

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I was running into the same issue - and although many suggest that you can create a folder and point Blender to it (by going to File > User Preferences... > File and selecting a location for scripts), I wanted to use the default location. I ended up finding this thread. It suggests that you go through the Applications folder and right-click Blender.app for Show Applications Contents.

Using this method, you can navigate to /Applications/Blender.app/Contents/Resources/2.78/scripts/addons and place whatever addon folders you like there! Note: potentially obvious but 2.78 is my version and may be different for you.

The only other gotcha for me was that once I found my custom addon in File > User Preferences... > Add-ons - Disabled and enabled it, I was forgetting to actually save this updated preference at the bottom of the preferences window. If you ask me, ticking a package to enable it should automatically be saved - but that's just an extra 2 cents :)

Hope that helps!

Edit: typo and clarification

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