Install macOS on Older Unsupported Macs

With the free tool macOS Patcher from dosdude1.com its possible to install a version of macOS that your Mac officially doesn’t support. This is a video that shows you the installation process on a white MacBook from 2010.

After install we test common use cases such as watching youtube, Netflix and surfing the internet. Lets find out how an almost ten year old computer holds up today shall we!

 

Install macOS Mojave on Older Macs

Apple have released macOS Mojave, and if you would like to install it on a unsupported system, check the tool below.

Obviously no warranty or support are given for this tool.

Install macOS Sierra on Older Macs

If you are sitting there with your old Mac feeling left out in the cold there is a way to shoehorn macOS Sierra onto your ageing computer.

Check out the macOS Sierra Patcher Tool for Unsupported Macs. And follow the instructions. This is of course not endorsed or supported by Apple in any way.

Flexgate – a new MacBook Pro Problem?

I don’t like to use that word, but since people are searching for it I guess I have to … flexgate. Apple may have a new big problem on their hands. That said, it could also be blown out of proportions. As it sometimes is with these issues.

The popular teardown site ifixit have recently posted an blog article claiming that the new MacBook Pros flex cables wears out prematurely and it could cause display problems. Especially if the display is opened above a 40 degree angle.

This is where the word flexgate comes from. A stupid word if you ask me, but the «flex» part relates to the cable that connects the display to the logic board. Its a thin and brittle cable that apparently breaks over time. 

flexgate
Image shows flex cable and daughter board included with the display assembly. Image credit: ifixit.com

If you need to fix the display outside of your warranty period you are looking at 600 USD repair (at best) because those cables are integrated into the display assembly and doesn’t come as a single part. If Apple doesn’t release a repair program as they did with the “staingate” issue.

Adding this problem to already existing issues makes you wonder if the radical design-change of the USB-C equipped MacBook Pro really was a smart move?

I know for a fact that a lot of people still hold onto their 15 rMBP. Imagine the performance you could have in those machines today if Apple just kept the same form factor and instead focused their efforts on improving performance.

Apart from flexgate we have the issues below as well:

  • Keyboard / TopCase issues.

Countless reports of keyboards having all sorts of issues with keypresses. Apple happily replace the top-case but the problem re appears after a while. What about those that live in countries with poor consumer protection? In worst case they have to expect an expensive service later down the line. Servicing a premium product already marked up pretty high. And only after one year. 

  • Thermal throttling issues.

These laptops are so thin, the cooling solution just isn’t equipped to remove the heat these CPUs produce. Even if Apple shoehorn a top tier CPUs in these machines it doesn’t matter if the cooling solution isn’t up to the task. This has been demonstrated countless times in many Apple products. Especially when the updated model with an intel i9 CPU hit the market. It did throttle so bad that Apple had to release a firmware fix for it. But not before countless people had reported on the issue.

Do you think this is an issue that is blown out of proportions, or is there some substance to it? Are you affected by this? Leave your thoughts in the comments.

AirPower may Release Soon

It has been a while now since Apple teased their charging mat for devices such as iPhone, Apple Watch and AirPods. The release was anticipated in 2018 but due to issues the release was postponed.

airpower

Airpower is a charging mat that when released is able to charge iPhone, Apple Watch and AirPods simultaneously.

Allegedly sources in Asia says Pegatron is set to produce the charging mat 21. Jan so maybe we will see it in stores soon.

IINA a modern media player for macOS, good VLC alternative

IINA is now available. A modern media player crafted for macOS and a good alternative to VLC. The app is from the ground up developed to make use of modern technologies and frameworks available in macOS such as Force Touch, Touch Bar, and Picture-in-Picture.

Plays anything

Just as the open source alternative VLC, IINA plays almost everything you throw at it. It uses the open source media player mpv and supports youtube-dl, via extensions it supports various one click streaming.

Open source

IINA is under active development using the modern Swift programming language. Its free and open-sourced under the GPLv3 license.

Go check it out yourself here: IINA

Install macOS Cleanly Can Solve Problems

Occasionally a clean install of macOS is the only thing that can solve problems with your Mac. This because it is difficult to pinpoint exactly whats causing issues with your system. In addition: if you have tried the suggestions in the articles below. Its probably time to try this last step: a clean install of macOS. I know the hassle to do this, especially if you have years of data laying around. Still, its probably less work to do a reinstall comparing to sending it off to someone. The positive aspect of doing this is that your system will feel fresh and new again.

Try the suggestions in these articles before you do a clean install. Or jump down to Preparing to install macOS to get started now.

Preparing to install macOS

There are things you should have ready or at least thought about before you embark on a clean install.

  • Backup your data, I suggest use an external hard-drive
  • Check App Compatibility
  • Have Install DVD, USB Stick or Internet Installation ready
  • Mac OS X Compatibility Guide (Supported macOS for your Mac)

Backup your data

This is a given, always backup your data. I assume you read this article because you want to solve a problem with your Mac. Therefore I won’t tell you to use time-machine to create your backup this time. My goal of this article is to get your reinstalled system to be as lean and untouched as possible while retaining as much as possible of your data. Although I recommend using time machine to do your backups. However, if you have a software issue with your system there is a risk that time machine brings that issue over to your new installation with its backup.

When your system is reinstalled, data copied over and made sure is working correctly. Then go ahead and start using Time Machine for your new backups.

For now, I want you to prepare an external hard drive, copy all of your personal data from your user folder (pictures, music, downloads, documents, desktop etc) over to that drive.

Amazon have a huge selection of cheap external hard drives. Make sure to get one with a little more capacity than your Macs drive. Disk utility, a tool in the /Applications/Utilities folder can show you the size of your internal drive. You might as well find it because you are going to use it later on if you follow this article.

In the backup, do not forget things such as browser bookmarks, notes, archived e-mails. Obscure apps you never are able to find again. If you have saved files outside of your user folder, make sure to include that as well.

Some applications are back-up-able by just coping the application file itself from the Applications folder. This usually works with simple apps. Software suites like Adobe or Microsoft Office often need to be re-installed again.

Check App Compatibility

Are you coming from an old version of Mac OS X and use older software you have to make sure the apps you want to use works on the version of macOS you plan to install. This is done with a quick google search. If not, you need to research and find out if there are new versions available. Or maybe there are some good open source alternatives available now.

Make sure you have original installation media for apps you are using, or have a way of getting hold of software before you initiate a clean install of macOS. Its not always as easy as just coping the application over unfortunately.

Install DVD, USB or Internet installation?

If your backup is ready now is the time to figure out how you should install macOS fresh. In my opinion a fresh install includes formatting your hard drive, wiping everything on it and starting the installation.

If your system is somewhat working, or if you have access to another Mac I would download the latest available installation from the App Store. I would close the installer that opens after downloading and create an installation USB stick using the free software: DiskMaker X. You will need an 8GB+ USB stick for this step. We don’t want to install macOS over an already problematic installation. We want to format, and do a clean install.

Make sure to unplug any backup hard drive connected to your Mac! Only connect the USB stick you just created. You don’t want to accidentally delete your backup drive when installing, right?

Restart your Mac while holding the Option (⌥) key down. After a while you should be able to start up from the usb stick you just created.

Erase and repartition your drive

When you are in the installation you should be able to find utilities and disk utility. From there you should create a new partition / wipe your hard drive.

install macOS disk utility

A Warning: Erasing your drive destroys all data on that drive. Make absolutely sure that your backup is alright. Again, remember to have your backup drive disconnected while you do this to prevent accidentally formatting your backup drive.

  • Click on View and select Show All Devices.
  • Click the device in the sidebar you want to format and click erase.
  • Give it a name, for example Macintosh HD.
  • In the map-popup menu select GUID Partition Map.
  • Click erase, then Done.

Exit out of disk utility and you can proceed with the installation of macOS.

Internet Recovery

You can initiate Internet recovery if you don’t have access to a working Mac or are unable to create USB stick. This installation routine will download the macOS version that came shipped with your Mac. Meaning if you want to upgrade to a newer version you will have to do that through App Store after installing via Internet Recovery. You can go ahead and upgrade directly from macOS at this time, after you have made a clean installation it should be fine.

To initiate an internet recovery: Restart, hold down the Command (⌘) Option (⌥)R key combination immediately upon restarting. When you see a spinning globe you can release the keys and let it load, it may take a good while as it has to download several GBs of data. I recommend doing this with an ethernet cable connected to your router if you can. It works on WiFi as well though.

Installation DVDs

You can buy the installation DVDs directly from Apple. As of this writing its still possible to buy Snow Leopard directly from Apple. Go to the online store and search for it. You can get installation DVDs from amazon and probably eBay as well.

To start up from a DVD you hold the key pressed during startup. This tells the Mac to boot from the DVD.

Post Installation Steps

When you have created your user account and are inside a new, freshly installed system. The first thing you should do is to update your system by starting App Store, and let it update.

If your system is older, click the Apple symbol  in the menubar and update from there.

When everything is up to date, and your system is running alright my recommendation is that you try using it for a while before copying over your backup. If things are running smoothly then you can go ahead and copy over your personal files and the data you backed up earlier.

Check again if you can access and use everything. If thats the case I recommend formatting the external drive you used, and configure it as a Time Machine backup drive instead.

When you have a new system up and running I recommend checking out the articles below:

iPad Pro 2018 may Come with A Slight Bend

If you notice a slight bend in your iPad Pro you should embrace it. The little bend adds to the character of the device and is an result of Apples highly advanced manufacturing process. According to Apple this slight bend is to be expected.

The company that prides on sleek design, lines / corners / edges in perfection and an unbox experience unlike any other. Expects you to accept imperfections straight from the box. After paying premium for this product.

2018 11-Inch Bent iPad Pro
2018 11-Inch Bent iPad Pro – Image Source: The Verge

As Steve Jobs said a few years ago: «We just don’t ship junk»

Apple doesn’t often comment, but they have said that this bend is normal and not a defect. The reason it bends is apparently a side effect of a (problematic?) manufacturing process.

That said, it seems like the people that have complained about this have mostly been able to get the device replaced. But how will Apple handle this in the years to come?

What if your iPad have another issue

Lets say your iPad suddenly starts to unexpectedly restart, and an restore with iTunes gives you an error message. You google a little and attempt a DFU restore without it helping. Your device still has its 1-year warranty and you bring it in to an Apple store to get the issue with unexpected restarts fixed.

What could happen then is that Apple takes out a ruler to measure the bend and then tells you the device is ineligible for repair due to accidental damage.

Do you think a slight bend in a design oriented and premium product like this is something you should accept? Would this possible affect other issues forcing you to pay for repair? Or is this blown out of proportions?

It would be nice by Apple to clarify this.

Leave your thoughts in the comments.

Intels Sunny Cove Architecture may come to a Mac near you

Intel released their new 10nm-based architecture called ‘Sunny Cove’ today. This could be new CPU candidates for upcoming unreleased 2019 MacBooks from Apple.

As with every new generation Intel claim these chips will offer even greater performance with reduced power loads. Machine learning, AI and cryptography will also be faster on these CPUs. We have heard talks about the 10nm architecture since 2015, but manufacturing problems have prevented release until now.

The current generation (late 2018) MacBook Pros use 8th Generation Intel Core CPUs with a 14 nm-based architecture.

This doesn’t confirm that Apple will use sunny cove in new Macs, but its a likely choice. We could see the end of Intel CPUs in at least Apples lower end laptop products. Considering Apples own A12 Bionic chip shows impressive performance numbers even outnumber some laptops today.

Qualcomm and Apple isn’t exactly friends

Qualcomm was recently granted an injunction on iPhone 6s through iPhone X in China. The Fuzhou Intermediate People’s Court have decided that Apple violates two of Qualcomms patents. This could result in the iPhone models getting unavailable to buy in China.

Apple however have stated that Qualcomms effort to ban iPhone models is a desperate move from the company. And that all iPhone models are available for customers in China.

The two companies obviously disagree on this and have to solve their differences in court.

This doesn’t apply on models running iOS12, and it could be a reason why Apple says that all iPhones still are available for people in China.

Rumors say that this is an attempt to settle a dispute the two companies have had for a long time. It could also be political, due to the recent trade war with China.

This isn’t the first time Apple is in court and we will follow this case as it unravels.

watchOS 5.1.2 for Apple Watch with ECG app now available

As promised Apple have released a new version of watchOS supporting their new ECG feature.

ECG App

Currently the ECG app is only available in United States, Puerto Rico, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

The ECG app can record your heartbeat and rhythm using the electrical heart sensor on Apple Watch Series 4 and then check the recording for atrial fibrillation (AFib), a form of irregular rhythm.

May already have saved lives!

A user on reddit have an interesting story to tell. He was going to try out the new app and the results came back as AFib. Thinking this was only a glitch he tried several times, and on both arms. Still AFib.

When his wife woke up he tried on her arm, thinking the watch had an error somehow. Her readings came back Normal.

So he went to the doctor to get it checked by professionals and sure enough AFib was the results there as well. Doctor telling him this may have saved his life.

This is not the only story about Apple Watch contributing to saving lives. Just make sure to not blindly trust the technology, but go to the doctor if you get irregular readings from your watch.