Apple’s macOS High Sierra is hitting Macs on Monday, and that means users around the globe need to be prepared.
The tech giant is planning to release High Sierra to Mac notebooks and desktops on Monday. The operating system, which was unveiled at this year’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC), comes with only minor design enhancements, but offer a host of under-the-hood upgrades.
Apple (AAPL) has been testing macOS High Sierra over the last several months with beta users, and overall, their reviews of the operating system have been quite good. And most market watchers expect a solid uptick in macOS High Sierra downloads in the coming days.
So if you’re hoping to be one of those prospective users and need more details about the operating system, read on for Fortune‘s guide:
Is Your Mac Compatible?
Any Mac released in mid-2010 or later is compatible with macOS High Sierra. You can also download the operating system on to MacBooks and iMacs that were introduced in late 2009.
If you want to find out if your model is compatible, click here.
Prepare Your Mac
There isn’t much you really need to do to get High Sierra. But if you want the best experience, it’s always worth considering backing up your computer, removing all unnecessary features that slow it down, and then downloading the operating system.
One of the easiest ways to do that is by using the Time Machine feature built into macOS.
From your toolbar at the top of your screen, click on the Time Machine icon and choose its Preferences. From there, you can turn on Time Machine, choose where to back up your Mac, and decide which files should be backed up.
Now that your machine is backed up, you can move forward with the High Sierra download.
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Is macOS High Sierra Free?
Yep. Apple doesn’t charge for new operating systems.
How Will Apple Deploy the Operating System?
Like previous versions, Apple will make macOS High Sierra available as a download through its Mac App Store. Simply click on the icon, choose to download the operating system, and Apple’s software will take it from there.
What Are Some of Its Best New Features?
There aren’t many major upgrades in macOS High Sierra, but arguably its most important is the addition of the new Apple File System.
The feature replaces the old file system Apple used for its computers, and promises much faster (and more secure) performance.
Additionally, macOS High Sierra will support High Efficiency Video Coding, or HEVC, for better video performance across the operating system. Apple has also boosted its software’s graphics features to make High Sierra a better performer with high-end video games and other powerful apps.
Built-in apps like Photos have gotten a makeover, and Siri should be smarter than previous versions of the virtual personal assistant. Apple’s Safari browser also includes some new features that block annoying ads.
As noted, Apple has tested High Sierra over the last several months, and beta users haven’t complained much. However, installing a brand-new operating system can be dangerous, if certain bugs or glitches weren’t discovered.
Apple has a good track record with new software, but be ready for possible problems, if they crop up.
What About New Macs?
Don’t have a Mac but looking to get one? Now that High Sierra is upon us, Apple will pre-install the operating system on all new Macs. So, if you’re getting a new Mac, you’ll have no other option but to run its latest operating system.