On September 20, 2016, macOS Sierra was released, a new version of the operating system Apple losing its old name (OS X) and you get a lot of cool features, many of which were borrowed from iOS. One of them is Siri, the digital assistant of the iPhone y iPad which finally makes its debut in Mac and allows you to perform many interesting operations, such as searching for information online, controlling iTunes and searching for files on your PC, through voice commands. news de Sierra does not end there!

In macOS 10.12 (this is the "technical" name for Sierra) we also find new features dedicated to iCloud: automatic document and desktop syncing via iCloud Drive, the ability to copy and paste information from one operating system to another (hence from iOS to MacOS and vice versa) and smart disk space management that automatically moves superfluous data to iCloud Drive by removing it from the PC.

In short, as you may have understood, this is not a "revolution" compared to OS X El Capitan, but rather an evolution of its own that presents several interesting new features. At this point I would say don't waste any more time and find out right away. How to install macOS Sierra on all compatible PCs, there are so many! I assure you that it is a much simpler operation than you imagine, so it is 100% free! Enjoy your reading and have fun!

Minimum requirements to install macOS Sierra

guidance on install macOS Sierra You must have a Mac from 2009, OS X 10.7.5 or later, and at least 8.8GB of free disk space. You also need to have your Apple ID details at your fingertips and you need a connection to Internet quite fast (since you will have to download all the files necessary to install the operating system from the Internet). This is the list of all Sierra compatible Macs.

  • MacBook in late 2009 or later
  • MacBook Pro mid 2010 or later
  • MacBook Air in late 2010 or later
  • Mac Mini in mid 2010 or later
  • iMac in late 2009 or later
  • Mac Pro in mid 2010 or later

To find out the exact model of your Mac, click on the apple located in the upper left corner (in the menu bar) and select the item Information about this Mac from the menu that appears.

A window will open with all the data on your PC. More precisely, in the tab overview You can find the exact model of Mac, the version of OS X installed on it, the type of processor it runs on, and the amount of RAM available; in the tab archive you can see the available disk space while you are in the tab the memory You can have a more complete description of the RAM installed in your PC (the amount of memory available, the subdivision of the banks, the frequency and anything else).

Preliminary operations

Before downloading macOS Sierra and installing it on your Mac, be sure to complete the following preliminary operations.

  • Check application compatibility (and update them) - Applications that run on OS X 10.11 El Capitan, in most cases, also work on macOS Sierra. In any case, it is better to be forward-thinking and check the compatibility of all the software that you use most frequently (mainly work). For applications to be compatible with macOS Sierra, you may need to update them. Then open the Mac App Store, select the tab to updates and install all available updates. To update software downloaded outside of the Mac App Store, launch it, click its name in the menu bar (top left) and select the entry for the search for updates from the menu that appears.
  • Backup of your data - Installing macOS Sierra does not imply deleting the data on the PC (unless you decide to do a clean installation, but we will talk about that later). However, before installing a new operating system, it is always a good idea to create a backup of all your files; operation that on Mac can be done comfortably with Time Machine, the backup utility included "standard" in OS X / macOS. To start creating a new backup with time Machine, make sure the target disk is connected to the Mac (or router), click on Time machine icon present in the menu bar (top right) and select the item Go back now from the menu that opens. Wait, therefore, for the backup to complete and the game to finish. If you've never used Time Machine before, read my tutorial on how to backup with Time Machine and configure the utility by following the instructions it contains.
  • Free up disk space (if necessary) - To install macOS Sierra, there must be at least 8,8 GB of free disk space. If you don't have them, try using an application like Daisy Disk to find the bulkiest files on your Mac and delete all the unnecessary ones. For more information on how the software works and other tips on how to clean your Mac, check out the guide I wrote on the subject.

How to upgrade to macOS Sierra

If you would like to install macOS Sierra without losing any data or application, open the Mac App Store (the blue icon with the "A" printed in the center located on the Dock bar), select macOS Sierra from the list of available applications and start the operating system download by clicking the corresponding button. The link to Sierra should be at the top or right sidebar of the Mac App Store, if you can't find it, please click directly on the link I just provided. To begin the download, you may be prompted to enter your Apple ID login credentials.

Once the download starts, you can follow the progress by opening the Launchpad OS X (the gray icon with the space rocket located on the dock bar) and checking the loading bar located below the icon for MacOS Sierra.

At the end of the download, the macOS Sierra setup should start automatically. To start the operating system installation process, click the button continued and accept the terms of use of the software by pressing I agree for two consecutive times

Then select the destination disk to install Sierra click the button install and enter the password for your user account (the one you use to log into macOS). Once this step is done, press the button Add wizard and wait for the files necessary to start installing Sierra to be copied to your PC.

At the end of the file copy (which will continue for several minutes), the system will restart automatically and the second phase of the macOS Sierra installation will begin, that is, the actual installation of the operating system on the PC. During this phase, you will not have to do anything, you will just have to wait for the copying of the files to complete and for the Mac to restart again to go through the initial setup procedure for macOS Sierra.

The initial setup procedure for macOS is Sierra is really simple. All you have to do is log in to your user account, Then yours Apple ID and accept the operating system terms of use pressing the appropriate button (for two consecutive times).

So you have to choose whether sync files found in Documents and on Desktop with iCloud (operation that could consume a lot of space in iCloud Drive, be careful!), if activated Crab and ready!

How to do a clean install of macOS Sierra

If you want a clean install of macOS Sierrai.e. an operating system installation that involves formatting the disk and deleting all the data present on it, I recommend that you create one pen drive with the Sierra installation files. This way, you can install the operating system on your Mac and other Macs without having to download it again each time from the Internet.

To create a USB stick with the macOS Sierra installation files, you need a common one. USB stick with at least 10 GB of free space (the drive will be formatted so make sure you don't have any important files) from macOS Sierra installation package (to download from the Mac App Store) and a small free application called Install Disk Creator. Here are more details of all the steps you need to take.

  • Download the macOS Sierra installation package from the Mac App Store as explained above. If you already have Sierra installed on your Mac, you need to go to the tab to re-download the operating system buy from the Mac app store;
  • Download the free app Install Disk Creator connecting to their official website and clicking the button Direct download ;
  • install Install Disk Creator on your Mac by dragging its icon to the folder applications from macOS;
  • Connect the USB The one you want to copy to is intended to copy the macOS Sierra installation files to your Mac;
  • starts Install Disk Creator and select the name of your USB stick from the dropdown menu Select the volume to become the installer.. Then make sure it is selected in the center of the window. macOS Sierra installation package (otherwise click the button Select the OS X installer ... and manually select it from the folder applications from your Mac) and start copying the files to the device pressing the button Create installer and typing the password of your user account (the one you use to access the Mac) in the window that opens. The file copy procedure will take 10-15 minutes.

Once you get the key with the macOS Sierra installation files, you need to connect it to the Mac to format and boot from it. To do this, restart your Pc, press and hold the button high of keyboard during startup and select the macOS Sierra USB stick (ex. Install macOS Sierra ) from the menu to choose boot devices.

Now wait a few seconds for the macOS Sierra setup to start, select the Italian from the list of available languages ​​and click the → button. Then the Disk utility from the macOS Sierra start menu and format the disk where you want to install the operating system. If you don't know how to do it, follow the steps below.

  • Select the name of the disk to format (Ex. Apple SSD ) from the left sidebar. Be careful to select the main drive and not one of its partitions, unless you want to install macOS on a specific partition of a previously partitioned disk;
  • Click the button initialize which is at the top;
  • In the window that opens, type the name you want to assign to the unit in the appropriate text field, make sure the options are selected in the drop-down menus below Mac OS Extended (Registered) y GUID partition map and click on the button initialize to start formatting the disk.

Mission accomplished! Now exit Disk Utility, select the item MacOS installation from the macOS Sierra start menu and click the button continued twice in a row Therefore, accept the operating system's terms of use by clicking the button I agree twice in a row and select the disco on which to install Sierra (i.e. the drive you previously formatted).

Finally, click on the button. install and wait for the copying of the first macOS Sierra files to be completed on the PC. The operation should take approximately 10 minutes, at which point the PC will automatically restart.

When the PC is turned back on, the second phase of the Sierra installation will begin automatically; phase that should last about 15-20 minutes. You don't have to do anything, just wait for the loading bar to finish and the Mac to restart again.

After restarting the PC, follow the procedure suggested to complete the initial setup of macOS Sierra.

Then select the country where it is located (eg Italy) and the provision you plan to use for the keyboard (eg Italian), choose do not transfer information from previous backups (in clean installations the use of Time Machine backups is not recommended, it is better to "manually" copy the files you need) and click the button continued.

Then choose whether to activate or not location services on your Mac and log in with yours Apple ID. After completing this step, accept the Sierra terms of use by clicking the button I agree for two consecutive times, taxes Username, password and photos for your user account and click again continued.

To conclude, choose whether or not you want to use iCloud keychain guidance on save passwords, either to enable disk encryption through Firevault (recommended), yes sync documents and desktop with iCloud Drive y if send anonymous statistics to Apple and app developers. Then click the button continued and have fun with your new operating system!

How to reinstall macOS Sierra

If you would like to reinstall macOS Sierra On a PC that has already been installed, you can follow several procedures.

  • Clean recovery facility - if you want to reinstall MacOS by formatting the Mac drive (thus deleting all the files it contains), start the Mac in recovery mode (by holding down the keys cmd + r on the keyboard during the PC boot phase) and format the target disk of the operating system using Disk utility. Then select the article MacOS reinstallation from the recovery menu and select the disk that you have formatted as the Sierra destination drive. This procedure involves downloading MacOS directly from the Internet, which is time consuming.
  • Clean installation of the flash drive USB - If you want to avoid downloading macOS Sierra, you can perform a clean installation of the operating system via a USB key as explained in the previous chapter of this tutorial.
  • MacOS recovery without data deletion - if you want to reinstall macOS without losing your data (which I advise you to save as a precaution in a backup), restart your Mac in recovery mode (by holding down the keys cmd + r on the keyboard during the PC startup phase) and select the item MacOS reinstallation from the menu that appears.
  • Restore from Time Machine - Another way to reinstall macOS without deleting data is to restore the operating system from a TimeMachine backup. To perform this task, all you have to do is select the appropriate item from the Recovery menu or from the flash drive's home screen and choose one of the available backups.

Frequent problems and first steps with macOS Sierra

Have you just installed macOS Sierra on your PC but can't take advantage of some of the features included in the new Apple operating system? We try to find out the reason for these malfunctions and, if possible, solve the problem.

  • Siri for Mac - to use Siri on your Mac, go to System preferences, select the icon Crab and make sure there is a check mark next to the item Enable Siri. If there isn't, put it on and click the button Enable Siri to confirm activation of the Apple Digital Assistant. Then adjust Siri settings using the appropriate dropdown menus: in the dropdown menu Keyboard shortcut You can select the key combination that will be used to call Siri (eg. cmd + space o Fn + space ), through the drop-down menu Siri voice you can choose to use Siri with a female or male voice, while using the dropdown menu language you can choose which language to use Siri.
  • Sharing the clipboard between MacOS and iOS - One of the new functions of macOS Sierra is to share the clipboard with iOS, thanks to which all the elements that are copied in one operating system can be pasted in the other thanks to the intermediation of iCloud. However, this feature is not available on all Macs. To exploit it, you must use an iPhone / iPad equipped with iOS 8 or higher and one of the following Mac models (making sure Bluetooth and Wi-Fi are active on both devices ).
    • MacBook from 2015 or later
    • MacBook Pro 2012 or later
    • MacBook Air 2012 or later
    • Mac Mini 2012 or later
    • iMac 2012 or later
    • Mac Pro in late 2013 or later
  • Sync desktop and documents with iCloud - Another iCloud feature that was introduced in macOS Sierra is syncing desktops and documents across multiple devices. To enable it, go to System Preferences> iCloud, Click the button Options placed next to the icon of iCloud Drive and if not, put the check mark next to the option Document folder and desktop.
  • Free up disk space - As mentioned at the beginning of the post, macOS Sierra includes a new feature that frees up disk space in a "smart" way. This means that files that are considered superfluous are stored in iCloud and then deleted from the PC (assuming there is enough space in your iCloud Drive account), that the recycle bin is emptied automatically every 30 days (only if the user activates the special function) and that it is possible to easily locate the largest files on the Mac (to delete the ones that are no longer needed). To take advantage of the new system to free up disk space, click the icon apple located in the menu bar (top left) and select the item Information about this Mac from the menu that appears. In the window that opens, select the tab archive, Click the button manage next to the icon of the HDD Mac and select one of the tools to free up disk space: Store in iCloud to delete unnecessary files by moving them to iCloud, Empty trash automatically to activate automatic emptying of garbage, etc.
  • Auto Unlock Mac with Apple Watch - macOS Sierra offers the ability to unlock your Mac with a Apple Watch. For the automatic unlock feature to work, it must be enabled in System Preferences, two-factor authentication must be enabled for the Apple account associated with the two devices, and obviously an Apple Watch and Mac that support this feature must be used. . . MacOS Automatic Unlock is available on all Mac products starting in 2013 and on Apple Watch equipped with watchOS 3.x (which must be connected to the same Apple ID). To enable automatic MacOS unlock, go to System Preferences> Security and Privacy> General, unlock the configuration changes by clicking on the icon padlock at the bottom left and place the check mark next to the item Allow Apple Watch to unlock Mac. If the option isn't present, make sure you've turned on two-factor authentication for your Apple ID (which is different from two-step verification) and / or try repeating pairing your Apple Watch with iPhone.

For more information on macOS Sierra and its features, see the Apple website.