How to prepare your Mac for upgrading to OS X Yosemite

BY Jason

Published 15 Oct 2014

OS X Yosemite logo

OS X Yosemite was unveiled at WWDC in June this year, and since then we’ve seen several developer previews and public betas of the OS, it will finally be publicly released this week, and here’s how to prepare your Mac for the update.

Is your Mac compatible?

The first thing to do is, of course, ensure that your Mac is compatible with OS X Yosemite. Apple has said that these Macs will support OS X 10.10 Yosemite:

  • iMac (Mid-2007 or newer)
  • MacBook (13-inch Aluminum, Late 2008), (13-inch, Early 2009 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Mid-2009 or newer), (15-inch, Mid / Late 2007 or newer), (17-inch, Late 2007 or newer)
  • MacBook Air (Late 2008 or newer)
  • Mac Mini (Early 2009 or newer)
  • Mac Pro (Early 2008 or newer)
  • Xserve (Early 2009)

Should you update?

If your Mac is compatible, the next thing to think about is whether you should update to OS X Yosemite. The update comes with a ton of new features, including a fresh new coat of paint, Continuity and Handoff, improvements to Mail, Messages, Widgets, Action Extensions, Markup and more.

➤ Today Widgets in Notification Center

➤ Best new features in Messages

➤ A look at the New features in Mail

➤ New features in Safari

➤ AirDrop finally works across iOS and Mac

➤ Make and receive phone calls, send SMS from your Mac or iPad

One reason to possibly wait is the bugs that come with every x.0 release. We saw this with OS X Mavericks last year, iOS 8 this year, but we hope that the extensive public beta testing Apple did helps the company push a bug-free release.

Install Updates

If you have any pending system software updates, then you should go ahead and install those:

  • Click on the  Apple menu at the top right of the display.
  • Choose Software Update. If you have pending updates, you’ll see them listed in the Updates tab of the Mac App Store. Tap on the Update button for these updates.

Perform Cleanup

It’s a good idea to delete unwanted files, videos, photos and apps before updating your OS. You can use tools like CleanMyMac, CCleaner etc. to perform this cleanup. If there are any apps that you’ve not used since sometime, you can uninstall them. Similarly, transfer large files to an external disk, delete unwanted files, especially if you’re low on free space, as an upgrade requires space.

Back Up you Mac

Although Apple promises the update process to be smooth, things can go south. To avoid even the remote risk of losing your data, make sure that you have backed up your Mac using Time Machine or other third-party solutions.

Are you excited to update to OS X Yosemite? What’s the feature you’re most looking forward to? Let us know in the comments.