Help Desk

Information Technology

Upgrading to macOS Ventura

Who should upgrade?

MacOS Ventura (13) is generally recommended for everyone at this time. IT staff have tested and confirmed the most commonly used software is compatible with Reed's environment (i.e., Microsoft Office, Zoom, Papercut printing software, Microsoft Remote Desktop, Cisco Anyconnect VPN, Crashplan backups).

Please refer to the list of supported Mac operating systems below. If your computer is running Catalina (10.15) or below, your computer is no longer receiving security updates and must be upgraded. Not sure what OS you're running? Go to the Apple menu > About This Mac

MacOS Supported/Receives Security Updates Notes
Ventura (13) yes See software compatibility notes below
Monterey (12.6) yes
Big Sur (11.7) yes Upgrading to Monterey or Ventura is less critical
Catalina (10.15) no Must upgrade OS; Crashplan backups not supported
Mojave (10.14) and older no Must upgrade OS; Crashplan backups not supported


Note: Wondering about the difference between the terms "update" and "upgrade"? Not sure what your current operating system version is? Visit Reed's supported operating systems page for details.

Ventura Software Compatibility

Most commonly used applications at Reed are compatible with Ventura:

  • Web browsers (Firefox, Chrome, Safari, and others)
  • Microsoft Office (2019 and 365)
  • Microsoft Remote Desktop (MRD)
  • Zoom
  • Cisco AnyConnect VPN
  • CrashPlan backups
  • Papercut printing client
  • ScanSnap scanning software

Some older applications may not run in Ventura and alternatives would need to be found (check the Roaring Apps website for software compatibility). In particular, if you use any Adobe apps, please see their list of known issues in Ventura.

Ventura Changes

Pre-Upgrade Checklist

  • Do you have at least 40GB of free space on your hard drive? If not, do not upgrade, as the upgrade may not complete and data loss may occur. Free up space, or talk with CUS first.
  • Are your backups in a good state? If you’re unsure, please ask CUS for help.
  • Do you use specialty software that may not have been updated to work with Ventura? Check compatibility at the Roaring Apps website.  Specifically, there are some known issues with Adobe software in Ventura. If you're unsure, ask CUS before upgrading!
  • Are you able to take a break from your computer for about an hour after initiating the upgrade?

Upgrade Expectations

For most users the upgrade could take around an hour, but in some circumstances it can take longer. During the upgrade a black screen might appear for several minutes at a time. Don’t panic! It is important that you do not interrupt the upgrade process once it has begun.

We recommend kicking off the upgrade, then checking back regularly to step through any prompts that have popped up.

Apple may present you with numerous security prompts as you begin working in the upgraded OS. Most prompts require interaction, but will be displayed only one time.

I’m Ready, How Do I Upgrade?

To upgrade, go to the Apple menu > System Preferences > Software Update. Alternatively, open the App Store application from your Applications folder. Search for "macOS Ventura", and follow the on screen prompts to download and begin the upgrade. Please note it may take up to half an hour for the installer to download. Once the download is complete, continue to follow the on screen prompts to step through the installation.

If you are on a Reed computer, installers for Big Sur (11.7) and Monterey (12.6) can be found in Self-Service, located in your Applications folder. Once you click "Upgrade" it will take some time to download the installer, after which it should open and prompt you to begin the upgrade.

Upgrading Will Not Fix Existing Problems

Upgrading the OS on an already misbehaving computer (slow to start, spinning beachball, etc.) can actually make matters worse. Contact CUS about any issues before performing an OS upgrade.

If you have questions about your backups or software compatibility, please contact Computer User Services before you upgrade. We’ll answer any questions and help make sure things go as smoothly as possible.