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macOS 10.15 Catalina

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I'm hearing grumbling on a listserve by nontechnical authors who have spent hours on the phone with Apple support trying to get their files back and their machines functioning after installing Catalina. I had posted a warning about the perils of installing Catalina, but Apple has been pushing upgrades hard. I don't know how widespread these problems are, but they seem to hit some people hard.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
I'm hearing grumbling on a listserve by nontechnical authors who have spent hours on the phone with Apple support trying to get their files back and their machines functioning after installing Catalina. I had posted a warning about the perils of installing Catalina, but Apple has been pushing upgrades hard. I don't know how widespread these problems are, but they seem to hit some people hard.
That's awfully vague. Could you get a few more specifics (e.g. apps, symptoms, etc.)?
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
More from Howard Oakley:
Eclectic Light Co. said:
Relocated Items in Catalina
When you upgrade to Catalina, one of its more curious habits is leaving a folder in /Users/Shared, with an alias to it on your Desktop, named Relocated Items. This is normally put in place to welcome you when you first log into your newly upgraded system.

According to Apple, when you upgrade “all your files and data are carefully reviewed to ensure they’re valid and authorised, undamaged, and in the correct locations.” This Relocated Items folder is supposed to contain those which “couldn’t be moved to their new locations” on the System and Data volumes, and with them is a PDF document explaining what to do about them.

If you’re really lucky, the same can happen again, during a Catalina update, or when upgrading from a Catalina beta version. If there’s already a Relocated Items folder in the /Users/Shared folder, then you’ll be pleased to know that the existing folder will be renamed Previously Relocated Items, and the newly relocated items placed in a new folder named Relocated Items.

Why are there Relocated Items? ...
 


That's awfully vague. Could you get a few more specifics (e.g. apps, symptoms, etc.)?
One spent three days of back-and-forth with Apple to find his documents. The other had problems with 32-bit applications, and from what she said, I think she clicked on the wrong thing and wound up "upgraded." I asked both for more details, but I'm not sure they understand what happened. Will let you know what I find.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
Here's some perspective from a macOS and iOS developer on Apple's "Catalyst" technology....
James Thomson said:
Catalytic Converter

Catalyst is in some ways a miraculous technology – just click a check box and instantly have a working Mac version of your app....


... The OS releases don’t seem to have gone very smoothly in general, from my outside perspective.

Documentation for Catalyst has been almost non-existent too, which has made things a lot harder than they should be.

From the business side, there is also no way for somebody to get the Catalyst version of the app for free when they buy the iOS version. And no great way to share in-app purchases either if you have a free app. That generally means that somebody will have to pay a second time to get a copy. There is definitely an argument that building a Catalyst version is actual work, work that should be paid for, but I can equally see the side of consumers that have been told it’s just a simple check box. Apple said a shared store will come in two years, but that’s still a way off.

I am hopeful that this is just a 1.0 (if you count the Mojave apps as a public beta), and things will continue to improve. It’s a great foundation, but there’s still a way to go before I could use it for PCalc. The real question is, what will be the state of Catalyst vs the state of Swift UI in future years? If one gains significant traction with developers, will Apple stop investing resources in the other? Time will tell.
 



Does anyone know how to kill the nagger for updating to Catalina? I have a lot of money invested in 32-bit software, much of which is unlikely to be updated, and I have no intention of using Catalina. I also have been progressively more and more disappointed with the direction the macOS has been moving in. This Mac user since 1985 is seriously considering going to Linux or even a PC (shudder).
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
Does anyone know how to kill the nagger for updating to Catalina? I have a lot of money invested in 32-bit software, much of which is unlikely to be updated, and I have no intention of using Catalina. I also have been progressively more and more disappointed with the direction the macOS has been moving in. This Mac user since 1985 is seriously considering going to Linux or even a PC (shudder).
You might want to read these and related notes:
 


Just tried to run macOS Catalina Patcher 1.2.0 to download a fresh copy of the latest macOS Catalina. Unfortunately, the file it downloads for me is Install macOS Catalina Beta (15.0.15). This may be the newest file, but I remember previous versions of the software downloading only the latest official release of macOS. Is anyone else seeing this? I do not see a preference to change, nor do I see a way on dosdude1's web site to contact him to ask.
 


I've read through/searched the entire Catlina thread here and haven't found anyone mention issues with search in Apple Mail.
I've updated a test system to Catalina and, regardless of what I search for, the results number is always the total number of messages in the inbox at the moment and I never see just those that messages that I should see.
I've done the following:
  • Quit Mail, removed the Envelope Index files, restarted Mail and watched it "Import" the entire message store.
  • Turned Spotlight off, restarted, turned Spotlight back on: sudo mdutil -i off -E /; sudo mdutil -s /; sudo mdutil -i on /; sudo mdutil -s /
  • Disabled Spotlight indexing via System Preferences: drag Macintosh HD to Privacy tab, restart, removed Macintosh HD from Privacy tab.
  • Removed mail account from Internet Accounts, restarted, re-created account in Internet Accounts
Posts in various Apple Discussions show this working for some people (most?), but my message count via IMAP is ~120k and I haven't had any success with the steps outlined above.
Howard Oakley on eclecticlight.co mentions the possibility of a Quarantine flag being set on the files/folders of sandboxed apps (which Mail should be), so I tried removing said flag, to no avail.
Is anyone else having this issue and what have you done to resolve (or not)?
I experienced this issue yesterday (may have been the first time I've searched for a message since upgrading to Catalina. I found this solution elsewhere that worked for me: 1) Quit Mail; 2) Shift-Launch Mail and Quit; 3) Repeat 2; 4) Reboot; 5) Launch Mail normally, and Search function was restored.
 


Just tried to run macOS Catalina Patcher 1.2.0 to download a fresh copy of the latest macOS Catalina. Unfortunately, the file it downloads for me is Install macOS Catalina Beta (15.0.15). This may be the newest file, but I remember previous versions of the software downloading only the latest official release of macOS. Is anyone else seeing this? I do not see a preference to change, nor do I see a way on dosdude1's web site to contact him to ask.
You may want to try unenrolling your Mac from the beta program or otherwise make it forget about betas...
Apple said:
Unenroll Your Devices to Stop Receiving Public Betas
When your device is enrolled in the Apple Beta Software Program, you will automatically receive new versions of the public beta. At any time, you may unenroll your device so that it no longer receives these updates.
 


More iTunes/Music annoyances: I cannot name a new smart playlist or change the clever name Apple has decided to bestow on it. Seems to be based on the selection criteria as parsed by Apple's (almost intelligent) AI (absolute ignorance). Existing smart playlists appear to continue to function. Play counts/dates are updated. Changes applied.

No cloud music here at all; it's all on my Mac and, by extension, my iDevices. No subscription to Apple Music. Or Match. If that matters.

So I'm wondering if this is just me? And, thank god this isn't a production machine. And this isn't production software.
 


I've read through/searched the entire Catlina thread here and haven't found anyone mention issues with search in Apple Mail. I've updated a test system to Catalina and, regardless of what I search for, the results number is always the total number of messages in the inbox at the moment and I never see just those that messages that I should see. I've done the following:
  • Quit Mail, removed the Envelope Index files, restarted Mail and watched it "Import" the entire message store.
  • Turned Spotlight off, restarted, turned Spotlight back on: sudo mdutil -i off -E /; sudo mdutil -s /; sudo mdutil -i on /; sudo mdutil -s /
  • Disabled Spotlight indexing via System Preferences: drag Macintosh HD to Privacy tab, restart, removed Macintosh HD from Privacy tab.
  • Removed mail account from Internet Accounts, restarted, re-created account in Internet Accounts
Posts in various Apple Discussions show this working for some people (most?), but my message count via IMAP is ~120k and I haven't had any success with the steps outlined above.

Howard Oakley on eclecticlight.co mentions the possibility of a Quarantine flag being set on the files/folders of sandboxed apps (which Mail should be), so I tried removing said flag, to no avail.

Is anyone else having this issue and what have you done to resolve (or not)?

Thanks.
Did you try the "Mailbox / Rebuild" menu item?
 


You may want to try unenrolling your Mac from the beta program or otherwise make it forget about betas...
I have never taken part in the beta program in any form. Not for macOS nor iOS.

The instructions seem to be for someone currently in the Catalina beta program. This is an old MacBook Pro not supported by macOS Catalina. It had a copy of Dosdude1's macOS Catalina Patcher 1.1.6, which I had used previously to successfully download a copy of the official release of macOS Catalina 10.15 the day after it was released. That file was archived and removed from the laptop. Yesterday, when I tried to run the same software, I got the beta version of Catalina. I checked and noticed that 1.2.0 had been released, so I updated the software but got the same result.

Was just looking to download the latest copy of macOS Catalina to compare against the prior available version and to archive it for possible future use on the computers I do support. If anyone has suggestions on how one might go about downloading recent macOS releases without going through the Apple Store it would be appreciated. The software from Dosdude1 had always worked in the past when needed. In the meantime, I will download and try his similar software for Mojave and High Sierra to see what it pulls down on this same laptop.
 


Catalina has all but bricked my Epson Photo V500 scanner. The company's long-time Epson Scan utility will not be made compatible with Catalina (at least for this scanner), Epson support tells me, and I'm left with Apple's crude and clumsy Image Capture.
 


If anyone has suggestions on how one might go about downloading recent macOS releases without going through the Apple Store it would be appreciated.
Just want to add that I am aware of the Python script mentioned previously here on MacInTouch. While this is one option, I am looking at other methods as well.
 



Catalina has all but bricked my Epson Photo V500 scanner. The company's long-time Epson Scan utility will not be made compatible with Catalina (at least for this scanner), Epson support tells me, and I'm left with Apple's crude and clumsy Image Capture.
I was about to recommend considering VueScan, but their support for the V500 indicates that it is dependent on 32-bit drivers from Epson, so you can't use the 64-bit version and therefore can't run it on Catalina.

According to their newsletter, they're working on native support (without Epson's drivers), but until then you probably won't have use of the scanner unless you find yourself able to boot an older macOS in a VM and run the software from there.

And it appears that SilverFast has the same problem. They only support the V500 in the 32-bit version. They don't say why but I assume it's due to needing drivers from Epson, which were never ported to 64-bit. They haven't said anything about developing their own (sans-driver) support, but if you want to check up on them from time to time, here's the list of scanners they support in Catalina.

If you are interested in either of these product, please contact them and let them know. They might not bother developing support unless there is sufficient demand to justify the work.
 


Catalina has all but bricked my Epson Photo V500 scanner. The company's long-time Epson Scan utility will not be made compatible with Catalina (at least for this scanner), Epson support tells me, and I'm left with Apple's crude and clumsy Image Capture.
I believe Epson does provide 64-bit drivers for Image Capture for my V750. (I can’t check from my iPhone.) Wouldn’t they also do so for the V500? I also thought about VueScan. Wouldn’t Epson’s Image Capture drivers also support VueScan, etc.?
 


I was about to recommend considering VueScan, but their support for the V500 indicates that it is dependent on 32-bit drivers from Epson, so you can't use the 64-bit version and therefore can't run it on Catalina.
According to their newsletter, they're working on native support (without Epson's drivers), but until then you probably won't have use of the scanner unless you find yourself able to boot an older macOS in a VM and run the software from there.
And it appears that SilverFast has the same problem. They only support the V500 in the 32-bit version. They don't say why but I assume it's due to needing drivers from Epson, which were never ported to 64-bit. They haven't said anything about developing their own (sans-driver) support, but if you want to check up on them from time to time, here's the list of scanners they support in Catalina.

If you are interested in either of these product, please contact them and let them know. They might not bother developing support unless there is sufficient demand to justify the work.
And be patient. VueScan has resurrected many orphaned scanners, including one of mine. When I finally got a new one, I kept using VueScan, although, it came with native software and Silverfast.
 


To follow up on my earlier comments, one woman says that updating to Catalina cost her the use of InDesign, a 32-bit app, which she needs because she edits a magazine, so she "lost" all her InDesign files. The update changed her fonts on Apple Mail, and left her unable to change the fonts in Mail. She also reports, "I find the computer moves very slowly. Just scrolling down a page or attaching a document takes a long time."
 


You might want to read these and related notes:
I wanted to get rid of it and I found a method mentioned on a link from post 22269. People reported varying results from setting AttentionPrefBundleIDs, but someone described removing System Prefs from the Dock, making an alias of the app and putting the alias into the dock. When I did this the red blob was no longer there - no clue yet if this blocks all system update notice blobs. They still appear on the System Prefs window when open.
 


Some positive Catalina news: I've been running it for about a week, and everything I have used (Apple first-party apps, Parallels and VMWare virtual machines, development tools, third-party utilities) has worked great in Catalina. It also seems smoother and more responsive than previous versions of macOS, especially when launching applications.

Hardware that I've upgraded to Catalina includes a 2016 MacBook Pro (frequently connected to a CalDigit TS3+ dock and lots of legacy and non-Apple hardware), and a 2017 iMac 5K.
 


Has anyone tried USB Overdrive with Catalina? (It's only specified to work through macOS 10.14 Mojave.)
Yes.

As well as I can recall, I installed USB Overdrive on 10.15 Beta 1 or 2. I use it only to kill the scroll button action and set Back and Forward shortcuts for the left and right side buttons on my Microsoft™ Comfort Mouse 4500. It is still working on 10.15.1 Beta 3.

I have been using USB Overdrive since Microsoft abandoned their Intellimouse software. Alessandro was quite helpful to me when I encountered the changed kext approval process in High Sierra.
 


As well as I can recall, I installed USB Overdrive on 10.15 Beta 1 or 2. I use it only to kill the scroll button action and set Back and Forward shortcuts for the left and right side buttons on my Microsoft™ Comfort Mouse 4500. It is still working on 10.15.1 Beta 3.
I just installed USB Overdrive on an iMac 13,2 running macOS 10.15.1 Beta 3. This machine had no previous install of USB Overdrive. No problems installing (except to be careful as I jumped through the hoops)and it works fine as described previously.
 


I have to ask, is anyone up here really using Catalina? All through the public beta, I had Catalina running on two volumes, a "clean" volume, and a volume that is a clone of my "working" volume. There have been gross differences in the function between the two volumes with different things breaking between each.

On the "working" volume with the release of Catalina, the Dock will not display; although, checking Activity Monitor, it is running. "Killall Dock" will cause it to display. When I click on the Mail icon in the Dock, only the Activity window opens. A second click on the icon will open the main Mail window.

In the 10.15.1 betas, the Dock is fixed, Mail is not, and menu items randomly get overwritten by a strange display mode, unlike how they are usually displayed, and do not function.

I find it hard to believe that Apple would have shipped a release with the Dock broken for most users, so I am trying to figure what is going on with my system. I've removed all startup login items, and used LaunchControl to disable all processes that don't belong to Apple, with no luck. The Dock issue will clear up when "Safe"-booted but returns at the next boot. Nothing jumped out from the console logs.

I wondered about the kernel linking issues that the Carbon Copy Cloner folks mentioned. I tried rebuilding the kernel from Recovery with no luck; finally turned SIP off – nada.

Anyone have any idea what is going on?
Thanks!
 



To follow up on my earlier comments, one woman says that updating to Catalina cost her the use of InDesign, a 32-bit app, which she needs because she edits a magazine, so she "lost" all her InDesign files. The update changed her fonts on Apple Mail, and left her unable to change the fonts in Mail. She also reports, "I find the computer moves very slowly. Just scrolling down a page or attaching a document takes a long time."
I should have added: does anyone have any suggestions for her? Is there any Catalina replacement for InDesign? Is there a reasonable way back to Mojave?
 


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