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Apple usually brings a new macOS version every fall, a few months after announcing its release. If you are too eager and cannot wait for the final version, then you can install the beta version and enjoy the upcoming features much sooner. This guide shows you how to install a macOS beta on your Mac and the risks involved in doing so.How to Install macOS Beta With an Apple Developer Account
There are two beta versions of macOS that you can install: developer beta and public beta. The developer beta gets updated more frequently, whereas the public beta is relatively more stable.
The developer beta may include many features that the public beta is yet to get, as the beta version is first released to developers, who give feedback and help stabilize it. Once increasingly stable versions are achieved, they are released as public beta versions. However, for the developer beta, you need to enroll in the Apple Developer Program, which costs $99/year.
Once you’re an Apple Developer, you can follow the steps below to install the latest developer beta.
Head to the Apple Developer website.
Sign in with your Developer account.
Wait for your Mac to restart. Once you’re on the Lock Screen, enter the passcode to sign in.
Again, wait while the macOS beta is being installed on your Mac and sign in with your password or Touch ID.
The Feedback Assistant window will open, and you can close it to start enjoying the new features of macOS before they’re officially released.How to Join the macOS Public Beta Program
If you’re not a developer or don’t want to drop $99 bucks every year, then you can install the macOS public beta for free with the steps below.
Head to the Apple Beta Software Program website.
Sign in to the Apple Beta Software Program with your Apple ID.
Now you can enjoy the latest features of the upcoming macOS version!Is It Safe to Install the macOS Beta?
While it’s safe to install a macOS beta on your Mac, it may not be a smooth ride, and you need to be cautious. For starters, you should never install any beta version of macOS on your primary Mac – even Apple does not recommend it, as the beta version is a work in progress and is bound to have issues.
Installing macOS beta on your primary Mac can disrupt your workflow and even cause data loss.Bugs, Security, and Stability Issues
Be prepared to face bugs and stability issues. Since developers are still working on the beta version, your battery may drain faster, or many apps may freeze when you’re using them. Your Mac may not even perform as well as it used to.
Also, beta versions of all operating systems are playgrounds for hackers. They will dig up any security flaws to exploit vulnerabilities. Usually, Apple releases security patches as soon as any irregularity is discovered, but using the beta version still poses a security threat.Some Apps May Not Work
Since the new macOS comes with many new features, many apps may not be optimized to run alongside them. The stock apps will obviously run without any issues, but third-party developers have to optimize their software for the new macOS.
One thing that you should keep in mind is that you must back up your entire Mac before installing a macOS beta. This way, if you want to revert to the previous macOS version in the future, you will not lose your data.Frequently Asked Questions Do beta users get the final version earlier?
No, but there is also no need to downgrade to the previous stable version macOS or uninstall the beta version before upgrading to the final build.
If you run into trouble with the process, you’ll need to know how to fix a frozen Mac during an update.How can I report a bug to Apple?
If you’ve come across a bug in the macOS beta, you can report it directly to Apple using the Feedback Assistant app. Open the app, select the area where you’re facing the bug, then describe the bug in a single sentence.
Image credit: Unsplash. All screenshots by Hashir Ibrahim.
With over two years of in-depth experience working in technical fields, Hashir is a master content creator who loves writing about Mac and iOS at major tech publications on the internet like MakeUseOf and MakeTechEasier. Hashir spends his free time boxing and designing his business.
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