1. Update Windows Operating System
  2. Upgrade Mac Operating System From High Sierra

MacOS Big Sur elevates the most advanced desktop operating system in the world to a new level of power and beauty. Experience Mac to the fullest with a refined new design. Enjoy the biggest Safari update ever. Discover new features for Maps and Messages. And get even more transparency around your privacy. Updates to macOS — the operating system on your Mac — might add new features to your computer, improve the power efficiency, or fix problematic software bugs. But alongside the operating system, it’s also important to update the apps on your Mac to ensure everything is working as it should be. MacOS Big Sur elevates the most advanced desktop operating system in the world to a new level of power and beauty. Experience Mac to the fullest with a refined new design. Enjoy the biggest Safari update ever. Discover new features for Maps and Messages. Get even more transparency around your privacy. Whether you use a PC or Mac, you can set it up to automatically install updates. With a Windows PC, you simply click on Start, then control panel. Go to Automatic Updates and turn it to Automatic. With a Mac, go into System Preferences and click on Software Update. At the bottom of the window, click on Download Important Updates Automatically.

© Apple It should only take a few clicks to update your Mac. Apple
  • To update your Mac, open the System Preferences app, which has its own 'Software Update' menu.
  • You can also check for updates through the 'About This Mac' menu, which can be found by clicking the Apple logo in the top-left corner of your screen.
  • If your Mac is still running macOS High Sierra or earlier, however, you'll need to go through the App Store.
  • With the new macOS Big Sur release, you should update your Mac as soon as you can.
  • Visit Business Insider's Tech Reference library for more stories.

In many ways, Macs are built for convenience: They have backlit keyboards, there's a variety of ways to take and save screenshots, and they come with a wide assortment of shortcuts that can speed up your work.

But like all devices, they also require updates from time to time. And although updates can be annoying and time-consuming — Who hasn't put off an update until the very last moment? — they're also incredibly important.

An outdated Mac is more susceptible to bugs, crashes, and even viruses (yes, Macs can get them too). And if you leave updates waiting for too long, your favorite apps might stop working altogether.

In November 2020, Apple released macOS Big Sur, the latest version of its famous operating system. And if you're currently working on a Mac, now is a good time to update your computer.

How to update your Mac computer

There are two major ways to update your Mac, and which one you use will depend on what macOS version you're currently running. For information on how to check which macOS version you currently have, read our article, 'How to check which version of macOS your Mac computer is running and check for new updates.'

Before going forward with updates, it's a good idea to backup your computer to ensure no data is lost in the process. You'll also need to be connected to the internet.

After that, keep in mind that the updates may take several minutes to install, depending on how many of your apps are due for updates.

How to update a Mac running macOS Mojave or later

If you've bought or updated your Mac since 2018, chances are that you're in this category.

1. In the top-right corner of your screen, click the Apple icon to open a drop-down menu.

2. There are two menus here that you can use to check for updates. Click either 'System Preferences' or 'About This Mac...'

3. No matter which one you pick, in the menu that opens, click 'Software Update.'

© William Antonelli/Business Insider There are multiple ways to reach the updating screen. William Antonelli/Business Insider

3. Wait a few moments for your Mac to connect to the internet and check for updates. If an update is available, you'll be shown what it's called — just click 'Update Now' to install it.

You can also choose to enable automatic updates from this screen by checking the 'Automatically keep my Mac up to date' box. This will ensure that whenever a new update is available, you'll be told without having to open this screen.

© Apple; Business Insider Click 'Update Now' to update, and check the box pictured to enable automatic updates. Apple; Business Insider

Update Windows Operating System

How to update a Mac running macOS High Sierra or earlier

High Sierra was released in late 2017. If you haven't updated since then, you should be sure to update as soon as you can to keep your computer safe.

Operating

1. Click the Apple icon in the top-left corner of your screen.

2. Select 'App Store…'

© Devon Delfino/Business Insider Open the App Store. Devon Delfino/Business Insider

3. Click 'Updates' in the left sidebar of the App Store.

Macbook© Devon Delfino/Business Insider Navigate to the Updates page. Devon Delfino/Business Insider

From the above screen, you'll be given the option to update your Mac. Any Mac computer released in 2012 or later should be able to update to at least macOS Catalina. If your Mac is so old that it can't even do that, it might be time to buy a new model.

Upgrade Mac Operating System From High Sierra

And, for future reference, don't worry about accepting an update and then having your computer unexpectedly restart — you'll be notified beforehand if a restart is required.

Related coverage from Tech Reference:

Jul 05, 2021 • Filed to: Solve Mac Problems • Proven solutions

Mac users get new software updates and versions more frequently than the other operating systems. That's both the blessing and curse for the Mac users. The latest software makes your Mac device compatible with the new technological developments. Still, it also makes the existing OS obsolete. That's why most Mac users with old devices try to update their Mac to OS X El Capitan. However, you can't update your Mac to El Capitan 10.11 if your Mac runs on software later than Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard.

Is OS X El Capitan Still Available for Your Mac?

OS X El Capitan (10.11) was launched on 25 September 2015, and it is an improved version of OS X Yosemite (10.10). Improved window management, quick and responsive interface, spotlight search, and enhanced graphics were the prerequisites of El Capitan OS. However, if you are planning to update your Mac to OS X El Capitan, your device must fulfill the following requirements.

Space Requirements

You can't install OS X El Capitan unless your Mac has a free space of 8.8 GB. However, that's the space you need to install El Capitan on your Mac. You might have to free more space to run your Mac more smoothly because low space slows down system performance.

Hardware Compatibility

Most of the Mac models can install and run OS X El Capitan, but in some devices, you can't use full features of this OS due to hardware limitations. For instance, you can't use AirDrop on your Mac if you don't have a WiFi network compatible with PAN. The followings are devices that are compatible with OS X El Capitan.

  • MacBook introduced in 2009 or later, plus MacBook (13-inch, Aluminum, Late 2008)
  • MacBook Air introduced in late 2008 or later
  • MacBook Pro introduced in mid-2007 or later
  • Mac mini introduced in early 2009 or later
  • iMac introduced in mid-2007 or later
  • Mac Pro introduced in early 2008 or later
  • Xserve models introduced in early 2009

RAM Compatibility

RAM is the temporary memory that supports the system to run apps and programs efficiently. Without enough RAM, trust me, you can't even run your native operating system smoothly. Similarly, you can't install El Capitan unless you have 2 GB RAM on your Mac.

Operating System Compatibility

Operating systems play a critical role in creating an operational environment for both the software and the hardware. If you have decided to update your Mac PC, you have to make sure that your device doesn't run the OS later than Mac OS X Snow Leopard 10. 6. 8.

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After you are done with checking the compatibility of your Mac device, it's time to follow some pre rituals to prepare your device for Mac OS X El Capitan 10.11. These steps are mandatory for the successful installation of El Capitan OS into your Mac, and Apple also suggests them.

Get Your Mac Ready for El Capitan Update

Unprepared installation of a new operating system can result in disappointment. Remember that you are going to get a relatively new OS for your older Mac. To increase the hardware compatibility of your Mac, you must go through a checklist for successful installation of OS X El Capitan.

Macbook update operating system on macbook air

Space in your Mac: This includes freeing space both on RAM and Disk drive. 2 GB RAM and 8.8 GB of disk space are mandatory because the installer would not proceed without the fulfillment of these hardware requirements.

Minimum battery requirement: During the OS update, a computer consumes battery quicker than the regular operations. Your Mac needs to have at least 45% battery to pass through the El Capitan installation.

Active Internet Connection: You can't proceed with any OS installation without an active internet connection. Along with the installation package, your Mac would also need some side installations throughout the update. Without the support of these plugins and drivers, you would be back to square one. So, an active connection is a must.

Update Apps: Outdated apps can halt the process of updating your Mac. As soon as the installation of Mac OS X El Capitan completes, you face a software crisis. Most of your apps would stop working, leaving you with a headache. That's why don't forget to update your apps before starting the update.

Backup Your Data: There's a high chance that you would lose your data during Mac OS X EI Capitan update because the new OS makes changes in every nook and corner of your PC. To prevent the possible data loss, make a double back up—one in the Time Machine and other in the external storage device. If there is any file missing after the El Capitan update, check how to recover files after OS X update.

Begin Update Process

Your device is ready to embrace Mac OS X El Capitan 10.11 after going through the steps mentioned earlier. Now it's time for some real action.

Step 1Visit the official Mac App Store and search for Mac OS X El Capitan. Your search result would Stake you to the El Capitan page. You can also download El Capitan without the App Store by the following links.

Step 2From the official El Capitan page, you can download your required version.

Step 3Once the download is done, the El Capitan installer will pop up on your screen.

Step 4Press the 'Continue' button and wait for the installation to begin. You can proceed with the installation by following the instructions of the installer.

Step 5The installation process does not take a long time. Once the installation is done, you can restore your data from Time Machine or external drive.

Recover Lost Files After OS X El Capitan Update

Do you remember those pre-installation steps? Those steps were taken to minimize the chances of data loss during the Mac OS X El Capitan installation. Despite these precautions, you are still at the risk of unprecedented data loss. You can lose data due to the following reasons.

Data loss due to corrupted files: If your Mac contains corrupted files, you will lose your data. During installation, the new OS tries to fix or delete corrupted files. These overwritten or deleted files would not appear after installation.

Nature of Mac OS X El Capitan's update: You will replace your older OS with a new version that is not tailor-made for your Mac. That's a significant shift in the environment of your Mac. Such kinds of major updates come with uncertainty, and you can't predict whether you are going to lose your data or not.

Hardware specifications: 2 GB RAM and 8.8 GB disk space is a standard requirement for El Capitan's update. But it takes a lot more from a Mac device to adapt to a newly enforced environment. A slight incompatibility can make you lose your data without any notice.

Lost Your Data After Mac OS X El Capitan: What's Next?

Data loss is one of the anticipated drawbacks of the installation of Mac OS X El Capitan. If you have lost your data after while updating your Mac and don't know what's next, it's time to get expert help.

Recoverit Data Recovery can be used for getting your documents, audio clips, videos, and photos back after Mac OS update. It uses high-tech codecs that are compatible with more than a thousand formats of files. Here are all the good reasons to trust Recoverit Data Recovery.

  • Junk free installation for the data security of their users;
  • High compatibility with Mac on different versions;
  • Works effectively with every storage device: hard drive, USB drive, SD card, etc.;
  • Deep scanning feature;
  • Straightforward interface and quick data recovery.

Mac users can retrieve their lost data after OS X El Capitan Update by following these steps.

Step 1Download Recoverit and tap on its icon to launch it on your Mac
(If you can't find the Recoverit icon on your desktop, you can use Finder to search it.)

Step 2After running Recoverit successfully on your Mac, now choose the following options.

Step 3Select the location of the drive you want to recover files.

Step 4Use the 'Start' button to scan it. Scan retrieves all the data of your selected drive.

Step 5Using the option to 'Preview and Recover,' you can choose the files that you want to recover, and you are done.

Wrap Up

New updates always come with uncertainty for the old devices. However, you can reverse your loss of data by taking the precautionary steps. Despite these steps, you might lose a few of your files. But don't worry, an ace software like Recoverit can recover your data.

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