How to upgrade to macOS High Sierra the right way

By

The new 4K iMac is Apple's most repairable machine in years.
Elevate your Mac to High Sierra.
Photo: Apple

Apple’s latest update for the Mac finally arrived today in the form of macOS High Sierra, bringing a host of improvements to Mac users. While the update doesn’t contain a ton of outward-facing changes, it’s definitely worth taking the time to upgrade if you want your Mac to be faster and more secure than ever.

Here’s how to do it.

Upgrade to macOS High Sierra

Check that your Mac is compatible

macOS High Sierra is supported by a surprising number of older machines. Yours probably made the cut, but if you’re not sure, here’s the full list:

  • MacBook (Late 2009 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro (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)

Ensure you have enough space

You’ll need at least 8GB of free space on your Mac before making the jump to High Sierra. If you need to make room for the update, try using one of these apps to get some more gigabytes of available storage.

Make sure your hard drive is healthy

Trying to upgrade your Mac when its hard drive has issues can cause serious problems. To prevent this, make sure there aren’t any errors or other potential issues first. Luckily, you can simply use the Disk Utility app built into macOS.

Open Disk Utility by hitting CMD+Space, then typing in Disk Utility. Then select your startup drive from the list. Click the First Aid tab and then click Verify. If you don’t see any problems flagged, you’re good to go.

Back up your Mac

Now that everything looks good to go, you should back up your hard drive just in case. Time Machine makes backing up everything a breeze. All you have to do is open your Mac’s built-in Time Machine app and follow the prompts. If you’ve never used it before, check out our how-to on using Time Machine the right way.

Hit that update button

From here on out, the macOS High Sierra upgrade process is incredibly simple. All you need to do is go to the Updates section in the Mac App Store. macOS High Sierra will be waiting for you. (If it’s not, click on the Featured tab and you’ll find an option to download it in the main section.)

Once you download macOS High Sierra, just hit the update button and your Mac will take you through the rest of the process.

  • MacAdvisor

    Missed a very important step there, Cult. Before even thinking about updating, check to see if all the software you use will be compatible.

  • ilikemac

    Have a LaCie Little Big Disk with dual SanDisk 240g SSD in RAID 0 configuration. High Sierra installer will not install.