When to Upgrade Your Mac Operating System: a Practical Guide

One thing that we love about Mac products is that they are always striving for improvement. It’s this high level of improvement that helps make Mac’s the great computers that they are.

One of the reasons is because of the great Mac operating systems that power our machines. These operating systems are always going through changes to improve the performance of the Mac.

So should you always upgrade your Mac operating system?

We’ve put together this guide to help you decide when you should and shouldn’t upgrade your Mac OS system.

We might be tempted to upgrade our operating system as soon as an upgrade is available. But is it always the best idea to do so?

Here’s what you should know:

  1. Do Your Research

Always do your research on the operating system before agreeing to upgrade to it. You want to see what changes are in the new operating system.

For example, if it only adds a few trivial features you may not need or want to upgrade your Mac operating system. But if it fixes bugs and has added security, privacy, and anti-virus features then it’s definitely a great idea to upgrade.

It’s also very likely that others will have upgraded the operating system before you have. You should look on forums, message boards, blogs, etc., to read reviews to see what other Mac users have said. This will give you an idea of whether or not the upgrade has been well-received and if you should go for it.

  1. Consider Your Device

You also need to consider the Mac device that you are using. Are you using a 2020 Macbook Air? Or are you still using that heavy Macbook Pro that’s over a decade old?

While both of these laptops have the ability to upgrade to the latest OS system, it’s very possible that the MacBook Pro may perform slower with the new OS system. You might be better staying with your current OS or upgrading to a new Mac altogether.

You want to learn about the system requirements or recommendations for the operating system before you choose to upgrade to it.

  1. Before You Upgrade

If you do wish to upgrade your operating system, you need to take a few factors into account. Is your Mac able to handle the upgrade process? Does it have the speed and capability to do so?

There might be hardware changes needed to upgrade your Mac OS. For example, you probably have a traditional spinning hard disk to power your Mac. We recommend switching to a solid-state hard disk before upgrading to your next Mac OS.

These types of hard disks are much faster and can handle the upgrading process of the operating system. It can take a few hours and can consume a lot of power when you are upgrading to a new operating system. The new operating system may also take time to boot and run its functions if the hard disk is not up to par.

You also want to consider the memory of your Mac. If your Mac runs out of RAM, it will severely slow down the operations of the operating system. If you find that your RAM is running low, you should go to a Genius Bar or any tech repair to upgrade your RAM.

  1. Maybe You Only Need Software Updates

The most common type of update that Mac users need is software updates. Often if you find that your applications are not functioning well, it could be because they are not updated regularly.

For all of your applications, you should have the setting on that your application is automatically checking for updates. When an update is available, you should update the software. You may find that when all of your applications are updated that your Mac is functioning a lot better.

Even if you do decide to upgrade your operating system, you should update all of your applications first. You also want to check that all your applications will work if the operating system is updated.

  1. Upgrading Might Be the Best Decision

But, of course, it might be that the best decision for your Mac and your other Apple devices to upgrade your operating system.

One of the major advantages of an operating system upgrade is that it usually ensures superior security. Your data, files, and Mac are more protected with the latest operating system. This alone is why many Mac users upgrade their operating system no matter what.

You will also see many great new features with an upgraded operating system. We may have gotten used to the excellent Spotlight feature or Siri or Time Machine. But remember that these are relatively new features that came with upgraded operating systems.

You will also find better synchrony with your other Apple devices. You will find that it syncs better with your iPhone, Apple Watch, and any other Apple product. In fact, if your Apple devices do not use the upgraded operating system then they may not be able to work together properly.

  1. Learn About the Latest Operating System

Let’s return to the first tip. We encourage you to do your research. Every new operating system will be different and you need to know if it is worth it from previous versions.

You need to know about the compatibility requirements for the latest operating system. You want to see what all the features are and compare them with your current system. If it only fixes a few minor bugs, then you may just want to stick to your current system.

But if there is an abundance of new features that may benefit you, then you should go ahead and upgrade. You should also see what features may no longer be available and see if it’s worth it for you.

If you need to know how to update your operating system (if you decide to do so), visit this link: https://setapp.com/how-to/how-to-update-macos

Ready to Upgrade Your Mac Operating System?

Now that you know whether or not to upgrade your Mac operating system, you will be able to make a better decision on whether to go ahead with the upgrade – or just wait!

Be sure to read more great content on technology and your Mac!

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