These tips all refer to the client version. If you are using Mac OS X server, please check: Server forums
for more posts on Mac OS X Server.
10.9 Mavericks, 10.10 Yosemite, unless your Mac came with either/or as well as if you purchased it previously from the Mac App Store. 10.6.8 users can download a version of 10.11 if they don't have 10.12 compatibility.
10.12 is available again, and the above tip on 10.12-10.14 covers how to get it.
Some people who no longer need it, may be able to transfer their license to someone who does. Snow Leopard is available for pre-March 15, 2010 Macs that are compatible with it. Apple minimum hardware requirements are the same for 10.8, 10.9, 10.10. and 10.11. 10.13 high Sierra is available: High Sierra upgrading tip
Apple's original Mavericks system requirements are archived here:
Before updating to 10.7 or later from 10.6.8 or earlier, please read this tip as a lot of software that is compatible with 10.6.8 and earlier is not with 10.7 and later, making the "free" update to 10.9 and 10.10 not so free:
Yosemite was released October 16, 2014 and has the same minimum system requirements and Mavericks. Only download or install Yosemite compatible software said to be Yosemite compatible as of reports after that date.
Note: 10.9.2 fixes a critical security flaw in earlier versions of 10.9. Airplay appears to be problematic with 10.9.2. The reason behind
it is not known. If you have a pre-10.9 machine, ask on the forum how to safely downgrade to a previous version of 10.8.5 or earlier which is safer than 10.9 or 10.9.1 if Airplay is critical. It is not yet known if 10.9.3 or 10.9.4 fixes the Airplay issue. This issue will be updated on: https://discussions.apple.com/docs/DOC-6831
A new solution for Airplay is on the link, as of April 6, 2014, regarding Bluetooth conflict.
A resolution has been found for the Fast User Switching desktop wallpaper and dock redraw issue under Mavericks:
Mavericks has the same hardware requirements from Apple as Mountain Lion, Mac OS X 10.8, which I outline here
See this tip to find your Mac model's age:
Like always, you must backup your data before installation as I describe here
And since there are more programs, which are listed on http://www.apple.com/osx/specs/
there is a chance some software that works in Mountain Lion may not work in Mavericks.
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/os-x-mavericks/ was the direct download link from the U.S. You will want to contact if you have interface or compatibility issues that need to be addressed by Yosemite before downloading Yosemite first to see if an exception can be made to get Mavericks instead:
Non-iCloud based phone and tablet synchronization software has not yet caught up with Mavericks from
If you depend on Blackberry or iSync based services outside of iCloud, hold off on updating to Mavericks until the situation is remedied, or synchronize with Windows on your Mac:
Or use an older operating system if your Mac is older than Mavericks on a separate partition or boot drive.
Caution: the Apple Launchpad App if edited in prior operating systems by third party applications may lose its icons.
Some third party USB 3 cards are not compatible with the installer for Mavericks, and may make external drives disappear,
and some external drives might disappear as well, if their firmware is not updated and connected while the installer does
its installation. Dismount, and disconnect all external drives prior to installation.
Western Digital hard drives that use software from Western Digital may lose data when upgrading to Mavericks. This tip has been
written to discuss the issue.
Third party devices that require sync services such as Markspace's based software will likely not sync until said software has been updated for 10.9.
The Launchpad in the Dock will show you the download file size progress for downloading the App from the App Store if you hover your mouse pointer over it.
Note, this progress is only for the download. The progress for the actual installation is not always apparently precise. It may tell you it is 1 minute from completing one portion of the install, but in reality be over an hour. Once downloaded, it took me two hours to install the operating system on an iMac 11,1 that already had 10.8.5 loaded.
10.9 when it is done loading the file from the App Store, will put a 5.31GB file called "Install OS X Mavericks.app" (without quotes) in your hard drive -> Applications folder.
5.31 GB works out to be approximately 45 billion bits, which at 7 Mbps would take 6400 seconds or 106 minutes, or 1 hour 46 minutes.
If you are running a program in the foreground when the download takes place, it will put the installer screen behind your other windows. Quit all open applications before running the actual installer.
It became available October 22nd, 2013. Macs that are newly released by Apple on the same date or later may not be able to run Mountain Lion or earlier, but should still be able to run earlier versions of Linux and Windows in virtualization the same as Mountain Lion.
Most issues can be resolved if you clone backed up your previous operating system before installinf Mavericks, unless there was some underlying issue not diagnosed before the upgrade.
Canon has made some new printer drivers: http://support.apple.com/kb/dl899
iTunes 10.6.3 was tested by me on Mavericks, and the purchased music would not play, nor authenticate. It is the last version of iTunes I'm aware has coverflow.
Like there is for 10.7 and 10.8, http://roaringapps.com/apps?platform=osx
offers a third party table for software compatibility. Ignore the El Capitan compatibility, as that has not been released yet.
However, once again RoaringApps has taken it upon itself to show compatibility of a not finalized operating system upgrade. In this case of Yosemite.
As Apple could change features before final release, take such compatibility reports for Yosemite with a grain of salt, and ensure that once it is released that the reports are dated after Yosemite's final release.
iTunes/Mac OS/iOS compatibility discusses solutions for people still running 10.9.5 who wish to downgrade to iOS 10 and link their iOS device to their Mac. With iOS 12 already released it pushes the minimum Mac OS X system requirements to 10.11.6 for many.
Apple has a listing of printer and scanner drivers for 10.6 through 10.9:
Any not listed, will have to come from the vendor directly.
Apple provides updates to the printers on that link through these links by vendor:
Third party scanner support exists from:
http://www.ellert.se/twain-sane/ supports these scanners: http://www.sane-project.org/sane-supported-devices.html
RAW photo support is different from 10.8 and 10.7. Here's the 10.9 RAW photo support:
10.9.3 has introduced issues with Fast User Switching according to this thread, which have not been resolved with the 10.9.4 delta update, it is unknown if the combo update will resolve it or not (and that's the one listed below the link to the thread):
10.14 Mojave is available to certain MacBook Air, Mac mini, iMac, Mac Pros and MacBook Pros after upgrading to 10.11 or later from 10.9.
Macs without Air or Pro next to the name need to have shipped with 10.10 or later and updated to 10.11 before installing Mojave.