macOS 11 Big Sur Primer
Apple released its latest version of macOS in November: macOS 11 Big Sur. We have been looking forward to Big Sur (and running it in beta) ever since Apple debuted it at the Apple World Wide Developer Conference in June. Big Sur brings some great security enhancements to your computers but also will bring a lot of changes and some of your hardware/software may no longer work. Be Prepared!
Certain computers that supported Catalina (many 2012 Macs) are not Big Sur compatible. You will require on of the following:
32 bit Software
Like Catalina before it, Big Sur does not support any 32-bit applications. 32-bit applications have been around a long time. Ever since macOS 10.13, High Sierra, you may have seen a notification on your computer about a particular app saying something like "This app is not optimized for your Mac". But in Catalina those apps will no longer even launch:
St Clair Software has great utility called Go64 that does a convenient scan of your system for all 32-bit software. And Precursor Support Plan clients can self-serve install G064 from the Precursor Managed Software Center.
A Partial List
A list of apps that support the new Apple Silicon Macs introduced in November 2020 is maintained here:
A partial list to watch out for
MSC = available in the (may require subscription purchase to activate)
Once macOS Big Sur is installed, software updates begin in the background and complete faster than before — so it’s easier than ever to keep your Mac up to date and secure.
New Control Center
Now designed just for Mac, the new Control Center consolidates your favorite menu bar items into a single place to give you instant access to the controls you use most. Just click the Control Center icon in the menu bar and adjust Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, AirDrop, and other settings — without opening System Preferences.
Privacy information on the App Store
A new section on each app’s page on the App Store will help you understand the privacy practices of the app before you download it.9 It’s similar to the way nutrition labels help you understand what’s in food before you buy it.
AirPods automatic device switching
AirPods automatically switch between your active devices paired to the same iCloud account — making it even easier to use them with your Apple devices.
Deeper web knowledge for Siri
Siri can now help you find answers to a broader set of questions by leveraging information from across the web. Ask questions like “How do hybrid cars work?” or “What causes seasons?” and Siri helps you find the answer you’re looking for.
When will Precursor do upgrades?
We plan on moving our clients to Big Sur depending on hardware and software compatibility.
If you feel you need to have Big Sur on your computer before that time comes you can request an upgrade by choosing the "Schedule an OS Upgrade" option from the Precursor Contact menu (the little blue "P" icon) in the menubar at the top of your Mac's screen.
There are a number of online articles regarding upgrading to Big Sur - all better written than mine. Here's one from Mr. Macintosh
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