25 Jun 2019
macOS version 10.14.0, called "Mojave," was released on 2018-09-24. It is a free update to 10.13 High Sierra. This note describes how to update a computer from an older version of macOS to OS X 10.14 Mojave.
Apple released MacOS 10.14.1 on 30 Oct 2018, fixing security bugs and adding support for Group FaceTime calls, and 70 more emoji.
Apple released MacOS 10.14.2 on 05 Dec 2018, fixing security bugs and a few other bugs.
Apple released MacOS 10.14.3 on 22 Jan 2019, fixing multiple security bugs.
Apple released MacOS 10.14.4 on 25 Mar 2019, fixing bugs and adding features.
Apple released MacOS 10.14.5 on 13 May 2019, fixing security bugs and adding features.
Here is a review of Mojave from Ars Technica .
I have installed Mojave on three computers, and the installations went OK. A fourth 6-year-old computer is too old to run Mojave and is stuck on High Sierra.
Many users have had success installing Mojave.
A friend had an 8-month saga trying to upgrade an iMac with a 3TB fusion drive. It took multiple tries and hours on the phone with Apple support. Finally, erasing and reformatting the disk, followed by a clean install, and then using Migrate to transfer applications and data -— but not computer settings -- succeeded.
Mojave ships with new Macs.
Most of the new features are cosmetic. Some are iPhone related.
Check MacInTouch for the latest status.
A friend reported being unable to upgrade an iMac. His installation failed, leaving him with a bricked computer. He had to restore from backup. (Good thing he had one! See below.) Other users have reported problems installing Mojave, or network failures after installation.
If you have an old Mac Pro, you must turn off FileVault disk encryption.
Not everyone can use the new OS version.
When you decide to install Mojave, do it carefully. You may find that there are issues that affect you: do your homework. Check MacInTouch to see if there are problems with macOS 10.14 that affect you.
Make sure you back up your entire disk before starting to install Mojave. Preferably to more than one place.
Make a list of the hardware you depend on, and search the web to check that each device will work. Older printers and scanners can have issues.
Leave yourself enough time. Upgrading will tie up your computer for a big part of a day. Installing takes an hour or two, but then your computer will be very slow until it re-does the Spotlight index and does a big backup up to Time Machine.
Here is a partial list of minimum program versions needed for Mojave. For other programs, check product websites.
|Aquamacs||3.5 preview||graphics issues|
|Audacity||2.3.0||32-bit app warning OK for now|
|Adobe Acrobat||XI Pro||Support ended in 2017. Seems to work. See below. (32-bit program)|
|Adobe Photoshop||CC||Known problems. See below.|
|Adobe Illustrator||CC||Known problems. See below. (32-bit program)|
|Apple XCode||10.1||free with registration|
|Microsoft Office||2016||See below. (32-bit programs)|
|Quicken||2018||$35/yr. See below.|
FileMaker 13 and 14 users report problems and crashes. FileMaker recommends updating to version 16 or 17.
Adobe no longer sells regular application versions of Photoshop and Illustrator. (Photoshop and Illustrator CS5 seem to work, with some issues. But they are 32-bit programs and won't work on the next macOS.) Instead they rent you a Creative Cloud subscription. Stop paying, the apps stop working. They tell you that one advantage is that you'll get bug fixes and new features whenever they decide to release them. (There are a lot of tricky deals, initial teasers, different bundles. You could pay $20/app/mo or $600/yr for all CC apps. Adobe also sells Photoshop Elements as a non-cloud application for $70 one-time.)
Similar deal for Adobe Acrobat.. Acrobat Pro DC rents for $179/yr, for 2 users. (Acrobat XI Pro appears to still work on Mojave, but there are no more security fixes.) You might be able to buy a lifetime copy for $449. If you search the web for replacement products, there are some listed. PC World suggests Nitro Pro 11, $160 lifetime for up to 10 users.
There are alternatives to Adobe products, such as much less expensive Affinity Photo and Affinity Designer I am trying these out. There are also free programs such as Polarr Photo Editor and GIMP. With any of these replacements, you have to learn how to use new programs, and worry about compatibility: printing services may have trouble with non-Adobe output.
Microsoft wants to rent you "Office 365." (Some Office 2011 programs still seem to work.) Again there are multiple deals: for about $70/yr/computer you can get the whole suite. You can also buy non-cloud Office 2019 Home & Student for $150 one-time.
There are alternatives to Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, including Apple's Pages, Numbers, and Keynote; the Google equivalents Docs, Sheets, and Slides; and free software such as Apache OpenOffice. All of these will work for basic usage but may have compatibility issues with other products.
Quicken has moved to a rental model also. Quicken wants to rent you Quicken 2018 for Mac for $35/yr. Quicken 2007 (Lion update) sort of works on Mojave; won't make a backup to an APFS volume. Since this is 32-bit software, it won't run on the macOS scheduled for 2019.
I bought a 2-year subscription to Quicken 2018 and attempted to import my Quicken 2007 data into it. It did not work: transactions after 3/18/18 were not imported, on 3 different credit cards. Spent several hours on this with Quicken support. They said "we don't guarantee that importing will work from Quicken 2007." I got a refund. I am trying Banktivity 7.
Once you are satisfied that your computer works acceptably, and you are going to stay on Mojave, you can make some adjustments.
You will probably want to set up per-user customizations, such as your desktop background and screensaver. After each new OS generation this is something of an adventure; functions get renamed and moved around.
Under Mojave, Spotlight "shows suggestions from the Internet, iTunes, App Store, movie showtimes, locations nearby, and more." To do this, it sends your location and query to Apple servers. You may wish to change this if you are required to keep some information private. Change it in two places: uncheck "allow Spotlight Suggestions" inand uncheck "Safari & Spotlight Suggestions" in .
Some kinds of security certificates are no longer accepted. These are the ones using SHA-1, which is deprecated.
If you use your computer for programming, you'll need to re-install your tools, which may have release dependent parts. The order presented here worked for me.
Word, Excel, and PowerPoint from Microsoft Office 2011 appear to work. They are 32-bit programs though, and so they won't work on macOS 10.15. I bought Office 2019 on Amazon, which sent me to their download page, which had a button to click to fetch the software. I clicked the button and got a Microsoft page, which said I needed a "Microsoft account" to download the software. I clicked "new account" and got the message There's a temporary problem with the service. Please try again. If you continue to get this message, try again later. I tried later, same message. Finally found an old account I could use to register Office 2019. Office 2019 is at least as buggy and inconsistent as Office 2011.
Photoshop CS5 crashes when opening a file or clicking on any menu, unless you openand enable Photoshop to control your computer. (I have observed this setting becoming ineffective: Photoshop returned to crashing, even though the control panel still showed it as ON. Turning it OFF and ON again stopped the crashing.)
Under Mojave, it seems that Save for Web options are not remembered from one use of the program to another: it used to use the last format you saved in, but now it forgets that and creates GIFs. Photoshop CS5 will crash on exit unless you delete /Applications/Adobe Photoshop CS5/Plug-ins/Extensions/ScriptingSupport.plugin. If you get flickering cursors in Photoshop CS5, try viewing and unchecking . (I think I have to replace Photoshop CS5... I don't use CMYK, animated GIFs, text tracking, layer masks, or 3D objects, so perhaps an alterantive product will do.)
Adobe Acrobat Pro XI appears to work but cannot find a software update server... so no security patches.
Illustrator and Acrobat are 32-bit programs and won't work on macOS 10.15.
Contacts exports vCards in the same format as for Sierra and High Sierra.
System Integrity Protection has new security features that restrict what applications can do. Mark Aldritt's blog has an informative article, which pointes out that AppleScript will not support Scripting Additions not provided by Apple, and that applications will need permission to send AppleEvents to other applications.
Some parts of the file system are not accessible by applications unless you grant these apps "Full Disk Access." For instance, you can't do ls ~/Library/Mail from Terminal. This limits the damage a rogue application can do, but it may cause problems for programming tools. You can grant Full Disk Access to Terminal, but it is very coarse grained: all Unix commands, all file system files -- or none.
The "Privacy database" that controls what apps can access certain facilities has been extended in Mojave. The database restricts what apps can reference Location Services, the camera, the microphone, contacts, photos, etc. You will notice alerts asking if various applications can use resources like the camera or microphone, the first time you use the apps. You may also get popups saying that "some app" wants to control "some other app." If you trust the first application, you can say YES.
Some applications crash or fail as a result of new privacy features. Open. If it says "Some system software was blocked from loading", click Allow and check boxes for software you trust and wish to use, and click OK. next, open and choose "Accessibility." If an app having issues is unchecked, and you trust it, check its box.
New Features: The Finder has a new feature called Stacks, which reorganizes the Desktop to make icons that represent multiple files, grouped by Kind, Date Last Modified, Date Modified, Date Created, or Tags. Folders are not included in stacks. Clicking on a stack icon spreads its contents over the desktop, in the position they were in before you checked.
The Finder also has a new Gallery view, useful for looking at a folder full of pictures.
There are three different cases where you enter your password. Their behavior changes in Mojave. (Actually there are probably six cases, three with FileVault on and three with it off. Haven't tried the "off" cases.)
New Feature: This is a new application for Macs, very similar to the iOS application. I tried it out, and then discovered that it would pop up notifications about news, even when the app was not running. I had to go into Notifications preferences and turn this off.
I used it, and its iPhone sibling, for several months and decided I didn't like it.
New Feature: Dark Mode is a new appearance preference for Mojave. White letters on gray in system apps, dark borders on windows. Some people don't like it or can't see it well. Some apps look just the same as always. Some old apps don't work right with it. Light mode is the default when you install Mojave.
I turned Dark Mode ON for a few minutes. Then I opened Terminal and discovered that I had white letters on a white background -- not too useful! I turned Dark Mode back OFF.
New Feature: The system interface has many Animations as you perform various actions. If these make you seasick, you can turn them off by checking "Reduce Motion" in. This switch also turns off video auto-play in the App Store.
Bug: When someone sends me a mail message with an attachment, I often wish to save the message but not the attachment. I used to be able to do ~/Library/Containers/com.apple.mail/Data/Library/Mail Downloads. Not so: in Mojave, even the superuser cannot list that directory unless you boot into Recovery and disable SIP. Turns out that each directory in Mail Downloads has the com.apple.quarantine extended attribute: maybe this is the problem.to do this. In Mojave, that menu choice is grayed out. I thought I would check permissions on
Bug: Sometimes, when I read mail from a POP mailbox with Mail.app, the app gets stuck. In the "Activity" window I can see that the app sits forever showing something like "33 of 49 messages." If I quit Mail and restart it, the download completes.
Bug: Sometimes, when I restart my computer, it hangs during shutdown with a spinning gray pinwheel. Trying to restart, e.g. to boot into recovery, hangs for a long time, more than 10 minutes. (I observed this problem with Sierra and High Sierra. I thought maybe it was associated with MySQL, since I had also observed MySQL taking a long time to stop when told to stop from the Preference pane.) When I installed Mojave and the latest MySQL, I thought the problem was gone; but it's not gone.
Undocumented Change: If you have multiple Terminal windows open, you now switch windows with e.g. cmd-option-2 instead of cmd-2. (Terminal now supports tabs, and cmd-N switches to tab N. I don't use tabs.) You can change this back to the way it used to work by unchecking a box in the preferences.
Undocumented Change: Photos showed me a notification and played a tune, saying "You have a new memory." WTF. I hadn't done anything with Photos for days. When I opened it, it showed a window titled Memories with a picture from 2007. There are new preferences "Show Holiday Notification" and "Show memories Notification." I turned them OFF.
Undocumented Change: I then looked in. A lot of applications were allowed to make sounds. I never turned any of these on, so installing Mojave or the application must have done it. I turned them off. I sure wish there was a way to globally prefer silence.
Bug: A few System Preferences settings did not seem to not carry over from my previous version. Check all your preferences. "Ask to keep changes when closing" was unchecked in. I checked it again.
Bugs:actually invokes a program called System Information. It can show some summary windows about your Mac's status and usage. One window is called : it shows recommendations about how to use iCloud to store things you don't have room for, and summarizes all the storage on your system. I keep a lot of .jpg files and web pages.. but System Information lumps all of my storage into "System." (No, I don't have 209 GB of files in /system, I only have 6GB.) The other thing System Information does is to produce the very detailed , which has many subdivisions. One of these is "Legacy Software" which lets you find 32-bit programs. Unfortunately, this report section lists programs that have been deleted, and there is no way to make the System Report look again. I mean, there is a menu item called , but it doesn't do anything.
Some old fonts may look different on non-Retina Macs, because Mojave disables "sub-pixel aliasing." You can turn it back on. Ensure thathas "Use LCD font smoothing when available" checked. You may also have to do
defaults write -g CGFontRenderingFontSmoothingDisabled -bool NO
.. and then restart your Mac.
Bug: The GraphViz site says to get GraphViz for macOS from MacPorts, and also says that it won't build for Mojave due to API changes. I was able to run the Sierra version of GraphViz after upgrading to Mojave. So I'm going to hope that I don't need to rebuild it.
Bug: Aquamacs version 3.4 seemed to work fine for me on Mojave. The web page said I should install the nightly build of version 3.5 for use with Mojave, so I did. Menus like "File" and "Edit" required two clicks to cause them to drop down. Jamie Taylor pointed me toward the answer: I had to quit Aquamacs, and then visit and uncheck and re-check the box for Aquamacs, and restart the editor.
Several macOS features were removed. Even more will be removed in 10.15.
The next macOS version, macOS 10.15 "Catalina", will release in Fall 2019. It will run on any machine that can run Mojave. It will have much more integration between macOS and other Apple devices.
iTunes will disappear and be replaced by 3 programs: Music, Apple Podcasts, and Apple TV. Device synchronization with other Apple devices will be supported by the Finder. Find My iPhone and Find My Friends will be replaced by a new Find My app. Photos, Reminders, Notes, and Safari will be updated.
There will be new security and integrity features, and these may affect the way your backup program works.
Keep a list of the software and devices you use and depend on, so you can check that they are supported.
Apple has announced that Catalina won't support 32-bit execution at all. Start planning. To list the 32-bit programs on your system, there is a section in the System Profiler that lists Legacy Programs.
32-bit programs from Apple that won't work on 10.15: Aperture 1 and 2, iWork 09 apps, old tools included with Final Cut Studio and Logic Studio, Final Cut Pro X 10.3.4, Motion 5.3.2, Compressor 4.3.2, Logic Pro X 10.3.1, MainStage 3.3. I don't use any of these.
32-bit programs from third parties that won't work on 10.15: Microsoft Office 2011, Adobe Illustrator CS5, Adobe InDesign CS5, Adobe Acrobat Pro 9.
Sony's PlayMemories software (support for a camera I have) is 32-bit. I found a web page that said that PlayMemories would be replaced by Imaging Edge . I installed Imaging Edge for the Mac, but it won't let me register an account, and anyway its documentation does not show the wireless importer function.
|Adobe||/Applications/Adobe Illustrator CS5/Adobe Illustrator.app/Contents/MacOS/Adobe Illustrator|
|Adobe||/Applications/Adobe Acrobat XI Pro/Adobe Acrobat Pro.app/Contents/MacOS/AdobeAcrobat|
|Adobe||/Applications/Utilities/Adobe Application Manager/UWA/UpdaterStartupUtility|
|Adobe||/Applications/Utilities/Adobe Application Manager/P6/adobe_licutil.app/Contents/MacOS/adobe_licutil|
|free software, latest version does not run||/usr/local/bin/gpg|
|Sony||/Library/Application Support/Sony Application Launcher/SonyAutoLauncher.app/Contents/MacOS/SonyAutoLauncher|
|Sony||/Library/Application Support/PMH Mac/PMHAnnounce.app/Contents/MacOS/PMHAnnounce|
|/Applications/Google Earth Pro.app/Contents/Library/Spotlight/Google Earth.mdimporter/Contents/MacOS/Google Earth|
Apple software to play QuickTime 7 files is 32-bit only. I don't have any old iMovie, Final Cut Pro, Avid, etc files, but if I did I would be converting them now. Supposedly VLC will continue to be able to play them.