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macOS 10.15 Catalina

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Ric Ford

MacInTouch
More from Apple Support:
Apple said:
If Final Cut Pro X projects aren't rendered after updating to macOS Catalina
When you first open an existing Final Cut Pro project after updating to macOS Catalina, Final Cut Pro might start rendering again or might not show video thumbnails or audio waveforms. The size of your Final Cut Pro libraries might also be larger after updating.
Apple said:
About incompatible media in iMovie for macOS
As part of the transition to 64-bit technology in macOS, you may see an alert in iMovie about media files that won't be compatible with macOS Catalina.

Before you upgrade to macOS Catalina, you can use iMovie to detect and convert all incompatible media files so they'll be compatible with future versions of macOS. After you upgrade to macOS Catalina, the option to convert the incompatible files will no longer be available.

To make sure new media you create is compatible with macOS Catalina, use cameras and media formats supported by iMovie.

In macOS Catalina, you might see an incompatible media message in the viewer when trying to play incompatible media if you haven't converted it before upgrading to macOS Catalina.
Apple said:
What happened to iTunes?
With macOS Catalina, your iTunes media library is now available in the Apple Music app, Apple TV app, Apple Books app, and Apple Podcasts app. And Finder is where you can manage and sync content on your iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.
 


I would also appreciate your thoughts on running Catalina on an external drive. Does it do anything to firmware or any other aspect that would impact booting back into my internal iMac Mojave drive?
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
I would also appreciate your thoughts on running Catalina on an external drive. Does it do anything to firmware or any other aspect that would impact booting back into my internal iMac Mojave drive?
I can't answer your question directly, but these notes may be helpful, at least:
Eclectic Light Co. said:
Don’t try reverting a T2 to older firmware
There’s been a recent spate of T2-equipped Macs which have suddenly become bricked and unusable. One cause for this has come to light: trying to downgrade the firmware in that Mac, for example when trying to restore Mojave on a Mac which has been running Catalina beta, according to recent tweeted reports by @tperfitt and @eholtam.
Eclectic Light Co. said:
Which EFI firmware should your Mac be using? (version 4)
macOS 10.15 Catalina brings EFI firmware updates for all supported models. This article lists the firmware versions of Macs which have been successfully upgraded to Catalina, or have run a late Catalina beta release.

If your Mac is still running Sierra, High Sierra or Mojave, it won’t (yet) have been updated to the newer version listed here. In that case, please refer to the previous listing of firmware versions. If your Mac is still running an earlier version of macOS, such as El Capitan, then you should refer to version 2 of this list instead.
For my 2015 MacBook Pro 15" production system, for example, macOS Catalina firmware is 195.0.0.0.0, while the current firmware (in macOS Sierra) is 194.0.0.0.0. Could I run Catalina on an external drive and return to Sierra on my internal? Probably. Am I going to try that? No.

#t2 #firmware #bridgeos #catalina
 





I would also appreciate your thoughts on running Catalina on an external drive. Does it do anything to firmware or any other aspect that would impact booting back into my internal iMac Mojave drive?
On my 2017 iMac 5K 27", I have a 1TB internal fusion drive running the latest version of Mojave (12.4.6?), and on my external Thunderbolt 3 drive, I have the newly released Catalina, which I updated from beta yesterday. I can switch between drives, for startup, as I please.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
I use a computer to run applications that are useful to me, not to run operating systems.
Apple and so many people in the tech field seem to have that in reverse.
That's an excellent point, and one that Apple radically blurs with its "integration" spin and blurring of all the lines between media, marketing, OS, apps, devices, and networks.

Of course, Microsoft famously did that first as a way of monopolizing the market.
Wikipedia said:
United States v. Microsoft Corp.
United States v. Microsoft Corporation, 253 F.3d 34 (D.C. Cir. 2001), was a noted American antitrust law case in which the U.S. government accused Microsoft of illegally maintaining its monopoly position in the PC market primarily through the legal and technical restrictions it put on the abilities of PC manufacturers (OEMs) and users to uninstall Internet Explorer and use other programs such as Netscape and Java. At trial, the district court ruled that Microsoft's actions constituted unlawful monopolization under Section 2 of the Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit affirmed most of the district court's judgments.
Then Apple took the concept to new levels....
 


I would also appreciate your thoughts on running Catalina on an external drive. Does it do anything to firmware or any other aspect that would impact booting back into my internal iMac Mojave drive?
Automatic firmware updates have been happening as early as during the beta phase of Mojave, as far as I can remember. The last firmware update on my 2018 Mac Mini was on Sept. 30, 2019 when I did an upgrade to Catalina beta. I experienced no glitches.

The beta versions of Catalina successfully ran on my system on two external SSDs – the first with a clean install and the second as an upgrade from Mojave, which was cloned from my internal SSD. Both ran smoothly with the bugs naturally expected from a beta version. There were a lot less bugs in 10.15 betas compared to 10.14.

Stability notwithstanding, the issues that you might come across are the iTunes breakup into separate apps and the demise of 32-bit apps. I have a Mojave installation on another external drive that I use to run 32-bit apps when necessary. These apps don’t have to reside in the same drive as Mojave. Mojave can launch 32-bit apps located in your Catalina drive, so do not trash those files yet.
 


Had that problem during the beta but not with final beta/GM.
The music disappeared on my iMac, but then I updated my 2012 MacBook Pro Retina, and it was still there in the iTunes Media folder. Strange. Fortunately doesn't matter. Glad it isn't my actual work that is disappearing.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
Mojave can launch 32-bit apps located in your Catalina drive, so do not trash those files yet.
That's a good point. And it suggests an interesting approach. One could convert a system to Catalina and add a minimal Mojave system as a separate APFS volume on the same drive, then boot into that to run 32-bit apps. (This might or might not be more awkward than setting up a Mojave VM.)

A key concept here is the idea of splitting an APFS Volume Group into multiple bootable volumes to host Mojave side-by-side with Catalina (no matter which one you choose to use for your primary/largest system).

Some related notes from Howard Oakley:
Eclectic Light Co. said:
When should you use APFS Containers, Volumes, and Folders?
... If you want to install more than one bootable system on a single disk, then you can either place them in separate volumes within a single container, or in separate containers. This is because each bootable system consists of three or more different volumes. There are pros and cons as to whether you choose to use separate containers, but separate volumes work perfectly well and don’t require you to give each bootable system a fixed allocation of storage space.
 


Is there a secret Apple download link for Mojave now? ...
Apple seems to provide direct App Store links to all installers since El Capitan here:

I've not tried it myself except to confirm that the Mojave link does indeed open the App Store to a page with the current version of Mojave (10.14.6). So, no need for a combo updater to update (these are still listed at sites such as osxdaily.com).
 





... Is deletion the new standard for user content not purchased from Apple?
I can't say it is a new standard, but it certainly began in earnest when books were transferred out of iTunes, un-announced, as part of a previous OS update. Every bit of metadata was summarily discarded, and all books showed Add Date being the upgrade date. The ability to listen in my chosen order was discarded as part of this.

The current dismantling of iTunes does certainly continue this trend. Playlists are gone for almost all media now.
 


The problem with this is that Apple will constantly hound you to change to zsh every time you start Terminal. Why should Apple care what shell you use is the main question. I've been using bash for many years and have no intention in going with zsh. So I'll have to live with the hounding message for a long time to come, I suppose.
Here ya go:
AddictiveTips said:
How to hide the 'default interactive shell is now zsh' message in Terminal on macOS
The .bash_profile file may be empty, or it might not be. It depends on what changes you’ve made to the profile. Regardless, add the following line to the file, and save the change.

export BASH_SILENCE_DEPRECATION_WARNING=1

The Terminal will no longer show the ‘The default interactive shell is now zsh. To update your account to use zsh, please run chsh -s /bin/zsh’ message at the top.
 


In Software Update for my MacBook Pro 2012, it stated that I have the Catalina update. I was under the impression that 2012 Macs were supported. My 2012 Mac Pro desktop is not showing the Catalina update, so that is the end of the line for Apple support for the great Mac Pro 2012, I suppose.

Musicians and producers who are using Macs should not even think of updating to Catalina until the music software companies have decided what to do about the new OS. Universal Audio, Native Instruments, PSP Audio, WAVES Audio – actually too many to name – have all recommended not upgrading to the Catalina OS.
 


I am interested in the impact of Catalina, so I opened Parallels and created a new Macintosh hard disk VM by using the recovery disk to install Mojave. Then after installing Mojave on the VM, I upgraded to Catalina.

Next step is to use my CCC backup hard disk with Migration Assistant to haul in my current Mojave files and see what happens. I will let you know what happens. Certainly easy to create a VM.
 


In Software Update for my MacBook Pro 2012, it stated that I have the Catalina update. I was under the impression that 2012 Macs were supported. My 2012 Mac Pro desktop is not showing the Catalina update, so that is the end of the line for Apple support for the great Mac Pro 2012, I suppose.
Well, it's the end when Apple stops providing security updates for Mojave and your app vendors stop shipping their updates. Until then, it just means you can't run Catalina. That's not likely to be an immediate problem, although it may be in a year or two.

Musicians and producers who are using Macs should not even think of updating to Catalina until the music software companies have decided what to do about the new OS. Universal Audio, Native Instruments, PSP Audio, WAVES Audio – actually too many to name – have all recommended not upgrading to the Catalina OS.
This is important advice for anyone who uses a computer in a production environment. Major OS releases (and this includes Windows and Linux as well as macOS) always end up breaking stuff. If you need the computer for your business, then don't upgrade it until you're certain that all the apps you need to run are compatible.

If you can afford the extra hardware, then I would recommend installing the upgrades on a sacrificial system. Test absolutely everything you need to do. If important apps don't work, then don't upgrade anything else until you figure out how to make them work (which may involve waiting for updates from the app vendor). Only after you're sure all your key apps work should you go ahead and upgrade your production systems (or allow your employees to upgrade their systems).

The alternative is to end up with a system that can't run the software you need for your job and no easy way to go back to the old system. Even if you can revert to the old system, it's a time consuming process.

Oh, and if anyone from Apple is reading, Microsoft has an incredibly wonderful feature in this arena. After any major Windows 10 upgrade (e.g. Anniversary edition to Creators), you have time (30 days, if I remember correctly) during which you can uninstall the update and revert your system. It takes a few hours for the revert to complete, and the backed-up system files consume a lot of storage, but it is a life saver if you upgrade prematurely and realize that you have to go back in order to keep working.
 



Apple has turned iTunes into a huge interactive advertisement for Apple Music. They have made it useless for anyone who doesn't like or doesn't want Apple Music.

The first thing I noticed was that streaming radio stations have been eliminated. Even searching for them yielded no results. Today, searching works, but crankily, because the entire goal is to sell Apple Music, which is totally oriented to pop/rock and thus useless to me.

Transferring music I purchased from Apple to a CD seems not possible, and no 64-bit alternatives are available.

iTunes has always been ignorant of the ways musicians think about and identify music, and now Apple Music wants only customers willing to pay the fee.
 


I would also appreciate your thoughts on running Catalina on an external drive. Does it do anything to firmware or any other aspect that would impact booting back into my internal iMac Mojave drive?
I have been running Catalina on a external Thunderbolt 2 SSD since the first public beta with no issues to my Mac Pro (late 2013) booting Mojave internally. I didn't check my firmware before installing Catalina, but it is now 133.0.0.0. According to Eclectic Light, it should have been 132.0.0.0 as of 10/31/2018, so Catalina must have updated it at some point.
 


The first thing I noticed was that streaming radio stations have been eliminated. ...
Transferring music I purchased from Apple to a CD seems not possible, and no 64-bit alternatives are available.
There are several different apps/sites for Internet/streaming radio, although none are (In my opinion) as convenient as what used to be in iTunes. A few I know about are:
  • iHeart Radio. The basic service is free. They also offer paid subscriptions with additional features that sort of mimic what you get from Spotify and Apple Music. On a desktop computer, it streams through a web browser. They have apps for mobile devices, cars and streamboxes.
  • TuneIn Radio. The basic service is free. They also offer a paid subscription service that adds live sports and commercial-free news stations. Like iHeart, they stream via a web page on desktop systems and use an app for mobile devices.
There are almost certainly other apps, but those are the two I have used.

Regarding playing your purchases elsewhere, if the music is not DRM'd, there are many software packages that can play them, some commercial and some free. Here's one list if you want a starting point.

If your files are DRM'd (content purchased in the early days of the iTunes store was, but more recent content is not), then you may be forced to play them using Apple's software. You used to be able to work around this by burning the songs to a CD and ripping them back. If that doesn't work anymore, then you may have to use an older Mac to do this. (There are also tools to break the FairPlay DRM so the tracks can be played with any AAC player. I don't have any experience with them, and they are technically illegal, so I'm not going to recommend any.)
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
More from Adobe re Catalina:
Adobe said:
Why don't my Adobe apps work in macOS Catalina?
macOS Catalina doesn't support 32-bit apps. Nearly all current Adobe products are 64-bit apps. If you are not using the latest update, you could receive an error. Most older, unsupported versions of Adobe apps are not available using 64-bit architecture.
Adobe said:
Known issues with Creative Cloud packages on macOS 10.15 Catalina
Issue with quarantine bits in downloaded package
When you create a package on the Admin Console, a zip archive of the package is downloaded to your computer. In the Admin Console, the zip file is created on-the-fly and then downloaded. Since it is created dynamically, a zip file downloaded on a macOS machine has the com.apple.quarantine bits associated with it. This is the case for zip files downloaded on any macOS machine. However, in the case of a machine that is running macOS 10.15, you will be unable to extract and deploy the associated package that has the com.apple.quarantine bits associated with it.
Adobe said:
Photoshop and macOS Catalina (10.15)
Photoshop 20.0.6 and later versions work with macOS 10.15 (Catalina) but have these known compatibility issues. You may want to remain on your current version of macOS until these issues have been resolved. Adobe strongly recommends that customers do their own testing on a non-production partition to ensure that new operating systems work with their current hardware and drivers (printing, and so forth). If you do encounter issues not already documented here, feel free to report them on our feedback site.
Adobe said:
Lightroom Classic and macOS Catalina (10.15)
Lightroom Classic 8.4.1 work with macOS 10.15 (Catalina) but have these known compatibility issues. You may want to remain on your current version of macOS until these issues have been resolved.
Adobe said:
Lightroom and macOS Catalina (10.15)
Lightroom 2.4.1 and later versions work with macOS 10.15 (Catalina) but have these known compatibility issues. You may want to remain on your current version of macOS until these issues have been resolved.
 


I installed Catalina into VMware 11.5 on my Late 2012 iMac 21.5" which is Catalina-capable. as are my 2013 MacBook Pro and MacBook Air. I won't install to an external until others verify that the firmware updates for these latter models don't cause issues.

I set up Catalina with my AppleID. The VMware Tools install didn't give me the ability to change the screen resolution from 1024x768. Using advice on the 'net, I tried re-installing, un-installing, and re-installing multiple times. Finally, I found the command
/Library /Application Support/VMware Tools/vmware-resolutionSet
I still don't have all possible resolutions, just some very weird choices (800x480).

In System Preferences > Mouse I turned off Natural Scrolling. It's still Natural in spite of several restarts (the checkbox has remained unchecked).

When restarting, I unchecked "Reopen windows..." Each time I restarted, it was checked again, even though I keep unchecking it.

That's two System Preferences that are dysfunctional.

I opened the App Store. It showed I was signed in. I went to My Account, and there were no purchases visible. The App Store finally asked for my AppleID password. After entering it, it immediately asked for it again (no typo message). Still no purchased apps showing. I signed out and signed back in - still no purchases. I restarted - still no purchases. To be sure it wasn't my account, I checked in Mojave's App Store - all my purchases appear. I installed Xcode and waited an hour or two. Still no purchases showing.

Enough Apple dystopia for one day.
 



In the all-new, all-singing, all-dancing Music app in macOS 10.15 (Music 1.0.0.426), "Radio" is the third item in the sidebar. You need to scroll down to the bottom of the pane to the right, since you've selected Radio to get the genres (currently 19 choices). But none of it is actual streaming radio sources – instead, they're all Apple Music-curated playlists.
 


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