IS&T now supports upgrading to macOS Catalina

November 22, 2019

In October, MIT Information Systems and Technology (IS&T) recommended waiting to update Macs to the newest version of macOS, Catalina, until several known issues were resolved. With this week's release of CrashPlan 7.0.3, the last major issue has been addressed, so IS&T now supports upgrading to macOS Catalina (10.15).

Preparing to Upgrade to Catalina

Before upgrading to Catalina, you should update to CrashPlan 7.0.3 and all other software to supported versions. A list of supported software versions is available on IS&T’s macOS Catalina page. As of this date, the only software listed that does not support Catalina is Spirion.

Also, before performing any upgrade, always back up your computer using CrashPlan or a local Time Machine backup.

Catalina can be downloaded from the App Store.

What’s New

  • macOS Catalina:  
    • iTunes has been replaced by three separate apps: Apple Music, Apple TV, and Apple Podcasts.
    • Apple Sidecar allows you to use your iPad as a second Mac display.
  • 32-bit applications will no longer run in macOS Catalina. Software must be upgraded to a 64-bit version or replacement software will need to be found. You can find out what software is 32-bit by going to “About this Mac,” then “System Report,” then “Applications.” You can then sort the 64-Bit column and search for “No.”
  • Privacy preferences have been extended to the Documents, Desktop, and Download folders; Trash; iCloud drive/other cloud storage providers; and external, removable, and network drives. This means software like CrashPlan and Sophos will not be able to access those files without granting full disk access. For people using the IS&T Jamf service, this step is not necessary.
  • macOS Catalina runs in a dedicated, read-only system volume – which means it is completely separate from all other data and helps improve the reliability of macOS. You will now see two volumes, your OS volume and a data volume with the wording “-data” appended to it.
  • Bash has been replaced by Zsh as the default shell. Bash is still available for now. Bash scripts should be updated to ensure future compatibility.
  • Scripting language runtimes such as Python, Ruby, and Perl are included in macOS for compatibility with legacy software. Future versions of macOS won’t include scripting language runtimes by default.

Upgrade Resources