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macOS 10.13 High Sierra
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macOS 10.13 High Sierra Frequently Asked Questions

Article ID = 180
Article Title = macOS 10.13 High Sierra Frequently Asked Questions
Article Author(s) = Graham Needham (BH)
Article Created On = 16th May 2017
Article Last Updated = 28th September 2017
Article URL = http://www.macstrategy.com/article.php?180

Article Brief Description:
Frequently Asked Questions about macOS 10.13 High Sierra

macOS 10.13 High Sierra Frequently Asked Questions

Q. When was macOS 10.13 High Sierra released?
A. High Sierra was released on the 25th September 2017. Buy it now on the Mac App Store
Q. How much will macOS 10.13 High Sierra cost?
A. It is a FREE download via the Mac App Store Buy it now on the Mac App Store
Q. In our family/household/business the different Macs have different iTunes / App Store accounts on them. Do I have to download High Sierra multiple times?
A. No. You can have more than one iTunes / App Store authorisation on a single machine. Use one of the iTunes / App Store accounts to authorise each computer in the family/household/business in turn to download and install High Sierra (in the App Store application click on the "Purchases" tab).
NOTE: Mac App Store authorisations (for consumers) are different to iTunes authorisations. Mac App Store authorisations are unlimited whereas the iTunes authorisation limit is 10.
Q. How do I install High Sierra on multiple computers?
A. There are multiple reports of some people getting a ~20MB stub rather than the normal, full ~5GB installer. If you get the full installer you can do one of the following:
  1. Try to download Sierra individually on each computer at ~5GB in size each time - but there is no guarantee each and every computer you have will download the full installer.
  2. Download the Sierra installer on one computer (at ~5GB in size), quit the installer and copy the installer to each computer's Applications folder that you want to install Sierra on.
  3. Download the Sierra installer on one computer (at ~5GB in size) and obtain the macOS Install Disc Image to use on each computer that you want to install Sierra on.
If you get the ~20MB stub there currently appears to be no way to make a copy/archive of the full installer. With the stub, once you go through the options, including where you want to install macOS High Sierra, it downloads a set of files to a folder called "macOS Install Data" on the target volume instead. You cannot copy/archive these for use on another Mac in the usual way. If you selected your boot drive to upgrade, this folder is hidden. At this time, if you are in this position, we do not know how you can get the full installer. We have, however, eliminated the following as reasons for getting a stub vs full installer:
  • Mac model / age
  • Version of macOS / OS X currently installed
  • Having ever been on the developer / public beta stream
  • Core Storage or not
  • SSD or spinning hard disk
  • Available free space on download volume
  • Whether you have the correct Recovery partition for the OS version you are using to download
  • The Mac being in your Apple ID Device List while booted from the listed OS i.e. the Mac is associated with your Apple ID
  • Speed of internet connection
  • Local network "content caching" or "Software Update" server
We'll update this article when we have more information.
Q. Which Macs can I install High Sierra on?
A. Apple has officially confirmed that the same Macs that supported macOS 10.12 Sierra are compatible with macOS 10.13 High Sierra:
  • MacBook (Late 2009 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro 13" (Mid 2010 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro 15" (Mid 2010 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro 17" (Mid 2010 or newer)
  • MacBook Air (Late 2010 or newer)
  • Mac mini (Mid 2010 or newer)
  • iMac (Late 2009 or newer)
  • Mac Pro (Mid 2010 or newer)
NOTE: You will also need at least OS X 10.8.5 and an Apple ID to be able to obtain High Sierra from the Mac App Store.
Q. How can I check what specifications my computer has or graphics capability it has?
Q. Which Mac do I have?
A. You can check "Processor", "Memory" and macOS/OS X/Mac OS X "Version" by going to Apple menu > About This Mac > Overview tab if necessary (hint - clicking on the version number will give you the "build" number).
A. To check your Mac's "Model Name" go to Apple menu > About This Mac > Overview tab if necessary > check for the computer name in the top line e.g. "MacBook Pro" (this can only be checked with OS X 10.7 or later)
A. To check your Mac's model date version go to Apple menu > About This Mac > Overview tab if necessary > check the details after the Model Name e.g. "Early 2015" (this can only be checked with OS X 10.7 or later) - to be more specific and exact you can check what "Model Identifier" your Mac has by:
  • If you are running Mac OS X 10.6 or earlier go to Apple menu > About This Mac > click the "More Info…" button > (the System Profiler application will open) select "Hardware" in the top left > check what it says for 'Model Identifier' on the right.
  • If you are running OS X 10.7 or OS X 10.8 go to Apple menu > About This Mac > click the "More Info…" button > (the System Information application will open) select "Hardware" in the top left > check what it says for 'Model Identifier' on the right under 'Hardware Overview'.
  • If you are running OS X 10.9 or later go to Apple menu > About This Mac > click the "Overview" tab in the top left > click the "System Report…" button > (the System Information application will open) select "Hardware" in the top left > check what it says for 'Model Identifier' on the right under 'Hardware Overview'.
A. To check what graphics capability your Mac has:
  • If you are running Mac OS X 10.6 or earlier go to Apple menu > About This Mac > click the "More Info…" button > (the System Profiler application will open) select "Graphics/Displays" under 'Hardware' in the top left (click the triangle down if necessary) > click on the 'Video Card' on the right to see the technical information below.
  • If you are running OS X 10.7 or OS X 10.8 go to Apple menu > About This Mac > click the "More Info…" button > (the System Information application will open) select "Graphics/Displays" under 'Hardware' in the top left (click the triangle down if necessary) > click on the 'Video Card' on the right to see the technical information below.
  • If you are running OS X 10.9 or later go to Apple menu > About This Mac > click the "Overview" tab in the top left > click the "System Report…" button > (the System Information application will open) select "Graphics/Displays" under 'Hardware' in the top left (click the triangle down if necessary) > click on the 'Video Card' on the right to see the technical information below.
A. To check your Mac's "Model Number" it is usually printed/engraved on the outside of the computer somewhere (it usually begins with the letter A or M).
Q. My Mac has the correct type of processor but I don't have enough RAM. What can I do?
A. All the supported Macs can run at least 2GB of RAM so all you need to do is make sure your computer has at least 2GB RAM installed. Most older Macs usually have 2 or 4 memory slots so it is best to upgrade to as much RAM as you can afford the first time. If your Mac supports 8GB or more (like some MacBook Pros / minis do) then upgrade to the maximum - In the UK we recommend Kingston Technology lifetime warranty memory for your Mac. Newer Macs have their RAM soldered on the motherboard and cannot be upgraded but all of these models have at least 4GB in the first place.
Q. I have a compatible Mac but I am running Mac OS X 10.6.x so how do I install High Sierra?
A. You will need to upgrade to a newer operating system first, then upgrade to High Sierra, e.g. install one of the following first:
Q. I have a compatible Mac but I am running OS X 10.7.x so how do I install High Sierra?
A. You will need to upgrade to a newer operating system first, then upgrade to High Sierra, e.g. install one of the following first:
Q. I have a compatible Mac and I am running OS X 10.8.5 or later so how do I download/install High Sierra from the Mac App Store?
A. See this article.
Q. I have OS X 10.8.5 or later but my internet connection is slow. Will this be a problem?
A. No, but be warned, the High Sierra installer is ~5GB in size so it may take some time to download.
Q. I have OS X 10.8.5 or later but I don't have a permanent connection to the internet. Will this be a problem?
A. Yes. The Mac App Store purchase of High Sierra will require an internet connection. See the options listed in answer to the next question.
Q. I have OS X 10.8.5 or later but I have an internet access data cap in place / I cannot download something that is ~5GB in size. What can I do?
A. High Sierra will not be available on optical disc or a USB thumb drive so your options are:
  1. Use a different internet connection to yours that does not have an internet access data cap in place.
  2. Go to an Apple Retail Store where you can install High Sierra from their local server.
Q. If there is no physical High Sierra disc/USB thumb drive and I install High Sierra but run into trouble what can I do?
A. If you downloaded High Sierra from the Mac App Store: A. If your Mac came with macOS 10.13 High Sierra:
Q. What new features does High Sierra have?
A. See Apple's official macOS High Sierra web page. MacStrategy's recommended features to note are:
  • Photos
    • Expanded/persistent sidebar - better navigation/viewing options with 5 sections: Library, Devices, Shared, Albums, Projects
    • Organise/filter photos quickly and easily
    • Improved editing tools
    • Improved Live Photos
    • 12+ new "Memories" categories
    • Edits made in third‑party photo editing apps automatically saved back to your Photos library
    • Improved face recognition
    • Face recognition syncs across devices (iCloud Photo Library required)
    • Animated GIF support
    • Import history
  • Safari
    • Speed improvements
    • Intelligent tracking prevention
    • Audio/video "autoplay" blocking
    • Tailor individual websites with Reader, content blocking, page zoom and Auto-Play settings
    • Third-party printing and books options
  • Siri
    • Personal DJ (Apple Music subscription required)
    • More expressive - new natural sounding male/female voices
  • Notes
    • "Pin" important notes to the top
    • Tables in Notes
  • Messages
    • Message history saved to iCloud
    • Person to person Apple Pay
  • Express installation setup (bypass customised Siri, Location Services and Apple Analytics settings)
  • New Apple File System (APFS) - WARNING: your software may not work with APFS, read our article for more details!
  • HEVC (High Efficiency Video Coding aka H.265)
  • Advanced File Sharing from macOS Server
  • Time Machine server from macOS Server
  • Content Caching from macOS Server
  • Metal 2
  • Airplay 2
  • Compressed Mail storage
  • Mail full-screen Split View
  • iCloud Drive - share files with a link
  • Apple Pay "Cash"
  • FaceTime Live Photos - both participants receive a notification that the photo was taken
  • External GPU support (planned for spring 2018)
  • Bilingual English/Japanese input
  • Hindi system langauge
  • New "Lock Screen" option on the Apple menu + keyboard shortcut
NOTE: For the minimum system requirements of various new features see the relevant Q&A further down this page.
Q. What's this about Content Caching from macOS Server?
Apple has moved the content "caching" feature of macOS Server to the client OS. It's accessible via Apple menu > System Preferences > Sharing > Content Caching. One or more Macs on your nertwork can now act as a caching server. This cached content can be stored on any volume of your choosing on the caching Mac(s). Apple has some technical articles all about this feature:
Q. Sierra appears to rely on iCloud a lot. Do I have to have an iCloud account (Apple ID) to install/use High Sierra?
A. You will need an Apple ID to use the Mac App Store to purchase High Sierra in the first place but once it is installed you may not need to use iCloud. An Apple ID can be your iTunes account if you have one.
macOS 10.13 High Sierra - go to Apple menu > System Preferences > iCloud. You have control over:
  • iCloud Drive - with individual control over "Desktop & Documents Folders" + individual application storage
  • Photos†
  • Mail†
  • Contacts
  • Calendars
  • Reminders†
  • Safari†
  • Notes† - requires "upgraded" Notes with iOS 9 or later, OS X 10.11 or later
  • Keychain (in the cloud)†
  • Back To My Mac
  • Find My Mac
† - This information can only be synchronised across multiple iOS devices/Mac computers if you have an iCloud account (Apple ID) - you cannot synchronise these types of data via USB/iTunes.
Q. Does High Sierra use Core Storage?
A. Yes. Disk Utility (in Macintosh HD > Applications > Utilities folder) gives you access to some Core Storage features and formatting.
Q. What does Express Set Up bypass?
A. After the installation and during the setup process you will get an "Express Set Up" screen. Clicking straight through will bypass the setup of Siri, Location Services and Apple Analytics. Siri will be on by default, Location Services will be on by default, and all Apple Analytics options will be on by default - some of these could be a privacy concern so if you are not sure, at this stage of the install, click "customise settings".
Q. Which Macs support HEVC/H.265?
A. To be confirmed…
Q. Which Macs support HEVC 4K video?
A. The playback of 4K HEVC content requires a Mac with a sixth‑generation Intel Core processor or newer i.e.
  • iMac (Mid 2017 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro 13" (2xTB3 ports Late 2016 2.4GHz i7-6660U model only)
  • MacBook Pro 13" (Touch Bar Late 2016 3.3GHz i7-6567U model only)
  • MacBook Pro 13" (Mid 2017 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro 15" (Late 2016 or newer)
Q. Which Macs support the Metal 2 graphics engine?
A. To be confirmed…
Q. Which Macs support AirPlay 2?
A. To be confirmed…
Q. Which Macs support external GPUs?
A. To be confirmed…
Q. Which Macs support Handoff, Instant Hotspot, and Universal Clipboard?
A. Apple has officially confirmed that the following Macs are compatible with Handoff, Instant Hotspot, and Universal Clipboard:
  • MacBook (Early 2015 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro 13" (2012 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro 15" (2012 or newer)
  • MacBook Air (2012 or newer)
  • Mac mini (2012 or newer)
  • iMac (2012 or newer)
  • Mac Pro (Late 2013 or newer)
NOTE: No MacBook Pro 17" model supports these features.
NOTE: Handoff requires an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch with a Lightning connector and iOS 8 or later. Instant Hotspot requires an iPhone or iPad with cellular connectivity with a Lightning connector and iOS 8.1 or later. Requires Personal Hotspot service through your carrier.
Q. Which Macs support Auto Unlock?
A. All 2013 models or later - requires an Apple Watch with watchOS 3 and an iPhone 5 or later.
Q. Which Macs support Apple Pay on the Web?
A. Apple has officially confirmed that the following Macs support Apple Pay on the Web:
  • MacBook (Early 2015 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro 13" (2012 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro 15" (2012 or newer)
  • MacBook Air (2012 or newer)
  • Mac mini (2012 or newer)
  • iMac (2012 or newer)
  • Mac Pro (Late 2013 or newer)
NOTE: Apple Pay on the Web requires an iPhone 6 or later with iOS 10 or later or an Apple Watch with watchOS 3.
Q. Which Macs support AirDrop?
A. Apple has officially confirmed that the following Macs support AirDrop:
  • MacBook (Early 2015 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro 13" (2012 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro 15" (2012 or newer)
  • MacBook Air (2012 or newer)
  • Mac mini (2012 or newer)
  • iMac (2012 or newer)
  • Mac Pro (Late 2013 or newer)
NOTE: AirDrop to iOS devices requires an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch with a Lightning connector and iOS 7 or later or an Apple Watch with watchOS 3.
NOTE: AirDrop between two Mac computers is supported by the following Mac models:
  • MacBook (Late 2008 Aluminum or newer)
  • MacBook Pro 13" (Late 2008 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro 15" (Late 2008 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro 17" (Late 2008 or newer)
  • MacBook Air (Late 2010 or newer)
  • Mac mini (Mid 2010 or newer)
  • iMac (Early 2009 or newer)
  • Mac Pro (Early 2009 with AirPort Extreme card, or Mid 2010 or newer)
Q. Which Macs support Power Nap?
A. Apple has officially confirmed that the following Macs support Power Nap:
  • MacBook (Early 2015 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro 13" with Retina display (Mid 2012 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro 15" with Retina display (Mid 2012 or newer)
  • Mac mini (Late 2012 or newer)
  • iMac (Late 2012 or newer)
  • Mac Pro (Late 2013 or newer)
Q. I've heard High Sierra includes something called System Integrity Protection (SIP). Will this stop me installing and using older software?
A. Possibly. See our separate article all about System Integrity Protection (SIP).
Q. I've heard High Sierra includes something called Gatekeeper. Will this stop me installing and using older software?
A. No. You can configure Gatekeeper in one of two different ways:
  1. Mac App Store = only software downloaded and installed from the Mac App Store will run (highest security)
  2. Mac App Store and identified developers = only software downloaded and installed from the Mac App Store or that have been digitally signed by an authorised developer will run (medium security - default)
Q. Does High Sierra have Rosetta? Does it run PowerPC applications/software?
A. Just like OS X 10.7 Lion and later, High Sierra does not include Rosetta.
Q. Does High Sierra include X11?
A. No. X11 on High Sierra now uses install on demand. When you first launch an app that requires X11 libraries, you are directed to a download location for the most up-to-date version of X11 for Mac e.g. XQuartz.
Q. Does High Sierra include Personal Web Sharing?
A. Sort of. Apple have removed the easy configuration of this feature (from System Preferences > Sharing) but the underlying software needed (Apache) is still included in macOS. You can either purchase Apple's own macOS Server 5.4 (£19.99), install/purchase third party products e.g. MAMP, VirtualHostX, etc, or get jiggy with Terminal commands for free.
Q. Does High Sierra include Xgrid Sharing?
A. No. Just like OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion and later it has been removed.
Q. Does High Sierra include Java?
A. No. Java is available to download from Oracle - see our Java article for more information and download links to obtain the latest free Java software.
Q. If I install macOS 10.13 High Sierra and don't like it can I easily downgrade back to 10.12/10.11/10.10./10.9/10.8?
A. Unfortunately, depending on your Mac model it may not be very easy. We're working on an article about that - check back soon.
Q. What should I do to prepare and be ready for installing High Sierra?
A. See this article.

Article Keywords: macOS 1013 High Sierra Frequently Asked Questions FAQ

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