Catalina ... is it time to install yet?

Catalina was released several months ago, and was reportedly buggy as “all get out”, and therefore I’ve waited to upgrade from Mojave. I’m sure that I’m not the only one. Most all of my favorite apps have been upgrade to 64-bit, save just a few that I rarely use.

So is it now time to upgrade? Any reason not to just yet? Thoughts? Suggestions?

If you don’t need some specific Catalina feature, I would hold off. Besides the rough install(and re-install) that I went through, Catalina has been one of my least favorite Mac OS releases since OS9.

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Very interesting! Why do you say that?

I finally upgraded my 2016 MBP about two weeks ago and have had zero problems whatsoever.

The only issue I have is that my favorite comic reader app, Simple Comic, supposedly should work on Catalina but it actually doesn’t and now I don’t have a working 64-bit quicklook for CBR/CBZ files, which is annoying but hardly the end of the world. There are other comic reader apps, after all. And the source for Simple Comic has been forked on github and there’s an effort to bring it up to date so there’s hope for the future!


The 10.15.3 beta2 was released nine days ago. If you want to get onboard you might want to wait for the final version.

Me? I’m waiting until 10.15.4

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I just bought a 16" MBP that came with Catalina and had trouble with a number of Apps that I expected to work. And then there are the 32-bit apps, some of which I have no replacement for. Other Macs here are still running Mojave or older. I see no reason to upgrade any of them at this time.


It could just be a hangover from my first experience installing Catalina on a 15" MBP that I was already unhappy with. It didn’t take, and I had to wipe it and reinstall from scratch. I can’t remember the last time that I’ve had to do that. I traded the 15" for a 16" and there are a few bugs, but things have been better.

The main feature that I was looking forward to was Sidecar for the iPad, but I’ve found that I don’t really use it that much. I didn’t use iTunes and don’t use the apps that were split out of it. I like dark mode on my phone, but can’t stand it on the Mac.

The thing that bugs me the most are the new security features. I open an app to do a thing, just like always, and then I have to dismiss a dialog box to let it use my Documents folder, and then another one to let it access a hard drive, and then go to the system prefs and type in my password and click a box to let it use the accessibility features. And then, somehow all of that gets screwed up and I have to do it again. I would swear that I’ve had to let some apps access my Documents folder three or four times.

Maybe I’d feel better about it if I had skipped the year 2019. My hardware dissatisfaction was compounded with software troubles which left me with bad feelings that are starting to even out a bit.


I upgrade my iMac about a month after Catalina was released. The only issues were 32-bit apps not working, but I knew that was going to happen.

No problems here. I have four out of five macs in the house on Catalina and that fifth is only because I’ve been lazy. My main work system has been on it since release with no problems.

I updated at 10.15.2.

My iOS devices got the new Reminders and Notes format with iOS 13. It was getting too painful that those two apps would not sync.

No problems.

Unless there is some specific feature you are really looking for, I would suggest waiting – I still see lots of small bugs arising (and there’s the bigger, unforgivable one IMO, of messages disappearing in Mail).

I have decided I will not upgrade until Apple has straightened this mess out – possibly not until 10.16.

Not upgrading anytime soon. There’s some latest bug about screen brightness being pushed to 100% every log-in, or even wake from sleep.

Seems easier to live with the devil*-you-know.


If you are waiting for a perfect release, it is not going to happen. I cleaned out all of my 32 bit apps and a lot of crude off my hard drive. I installed Catalina after 10.15.2 and I have had no issues. I have no regrets about updating.

I’m quite happy with Catalina. There are several new changes that I like:

  • The TV app
  • Device management in Finder
  • Sidecar (iPad as second display without a third party app)
  • Find My and the new mesh finder thing (which I haven’t had to use yet, thankfully)
  • All the additional security settings - yes, the initial deluge of permissions is annoying but it was worth being presented with what all this auto-launching software was doing.

We aren’t able to upgrade at work yet because a critical app is still 32-bit, which is entirely their fault and not Apple’s (their bread and butter is this macOS app and we pay a few hundred dollars a year per user to use it. Come on!) Once that’s fixed, we’ll update there too.

Looks like the mail issue may be fixed in latest developer beta:

I wouldn’t touch it until that’s released.

I am on a late 2014 iMac, and have held off upgrading. The real headline feature I wanted was sidecar, but it seems that won’t work on a Mac as old as mine. Secondly is the lack of support for 32-bit apps. Almost none of my steam games will work. If I do upgrade it is likely I will need to install bootcamp.

Third 10.15.3 beta just released to developers. According to a dev I spoke with, apps launch very fast on this version.

As long as you are ok with loosing 32bit apps and plugins I see no problem.

I have upgraded a bunch of machines without trouble.

Installing a new macOS is no panacea for a system with trouble. Make sure the machine works well before you upgrade.

  1. Always have a backup before you start
  2. Update the current macOS
  3. Tune up the current MacOS (Onyx / Cleanmymac)
  4. Restart the Mac
  5. Start upgrade

No Mail issues? I’d like to get a sense of how common and recoverable these have been.


Nope at least not with well known email providers.

You will have to authenticate again, just follow the prompts and say yes to everything.