Why macOS Catalina is not Apple’s finest moment

After using macOS Catalina for one week, Erik Eckel shares the problems he experienced using the release.


Image: Apple Inc.

Some OS releases are better than others. macOS Catalina? I don’t believe the operating system’s introduction is Apple’s finest moment. Let me count the reasons why not.

In fact, I began encountering trouble even before Catalina, macOS version 10.15, was released October 7, 2019. Apple readied iOS 13 first, which I dutifully loaded upon release September 24, 2019. Subsequently, for two weeks I was presented with recurring errors in which critical Notes and Reminders, updated on various iPads and iPhones, failed to synchronize to my primary Mac. Confusion and frustration resulted, impacting and interrupting daily production, as no practical fix was available until macOS Catalina hit the streets. If I had known the trouble would arise, I would have waited to update my iPhones and iPad.

SEE: Top 20 Apple keyboard shortcuts for business users (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

Problems with the macOS Catalina installation

Even the macOS Catalina installation proved problematic. Sufficiently experienced to recognize one should never interrupt an OS installation or macOS update in progress, or hard reset a Mac installing a new release, I was required to do just that.

After staring at the Setting Up Your Mac screen, and watching the corresponding Setting Up twirling cursor image for hours, I was forced to search for others’ experiences with the same problem. I immediately found I wasn’t alone. Numerous users were complaining online about the same problem, with the only readily identifiable guidance being to interrupt the install by depressing and holding the Mac’s power button. Fortunately, the macOS installation proceeded after doing so, but there were anxious moments wondering whether I was going to have to recover all my data…