Q&A: Safari crashes when opening

Q Whenever I try to open Safari, I see an alert informing me that it quit unexpectedly while using the librooksbas.dylib.plug-in. I cannot seem to find any way of getting Safari to get past that. Do I need to re-install it, and if so, how?

A This error is most probably because you use, or have used, Internet banking. Many such services install the Trusteer Rapport plugin to try to improve security; however that plugin is not without its problems, in this case needing updating before it will allow Safari to run properly.

If you still use Internet banking, removing Rapport would both disable it and block your banking service, so you will need to update the plugin through this page. During the update the old broken version should be removed, enabling Safari to run properly again. Some online banking services may also provide their own updates for registered users.

If you do not need the plugin any more, Trusteer details its removal here. Afterwards you may also like to check that it has gone from the folders at ~/Library/Internet Plug-Ins, ~/Library/Safari/Extensions, and /Library/Internet Plug-Ins.

Comments Normally you can control Safari’s plugins and extensions from its Preferences dialog. However when a plugin is crashing Safari like this, you are unable to get to that dialog to control it. You can then either remove the plugin manually from one of the folders listed above, or use an uninstaller to remove existing files for that extension.

If you are unsuccessful with these, restarting your Mac in Safe mode, with the Shift key held down, should also disable all extensions. Some third party utilities allow you to control Safari plugins and extensions, or you can enter the following in Terminal’s command line:
defaults write com.apple.Safari ExtensionsEnabled 0

If you have an iPhone or iPad, you may find it simpler to download and install your bank’s mobile app(s), as they usually cause fewer problems.

Updated from the original, which was first published in MacUser volume 30 issue 06, 2014.