2009 Mac Pro 4,1 upgrade to Sierra or High Sierra


Dave Hughes

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I need to upgrade my 2009 Mac Pro 4,1 to Sierra or High Sierra. I read a procedure on MacWorld that said there was a problem with wi-fi if there is a Broadcom BCM4321 module, which mine has. Anyone have info on this? I would prefer to keep my El Capitan, but TurboTax requires a later OS.
 
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Cory Cooper

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Hello,

They are probably reporting that issue, since the Mac Pro (Early 2009) isn't officially supported past Mac OS X 10.11.6 El Capitan. It sounds like the "hack" to install Sierra or High Sierra doesn't provide the proper hardware driver for the Broadcom module. I am not a proponent of running versions of OS software beyond the officially supported versions, due to issues like this.

There are a couple of things you could do:

1. Install Sierra or High Sierra on an external hard drive and startup from it. You could then use an Ethernet cable instead of Wi-Fi for Internet connectivity to enable use of the latest TurboTax software.

2. Use the TurboTax Online version, which supports Macs running everything from Mac OS X 10.6.x Snow Leopard or later. It also can be used with an iPad (3rd Gen) running iOS 9 or later.

Hope that helps,

C
 

Dave Hughes

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Thanks, Cory. I would use the TurboTax Online except I do 3 family members tax, and I understand I wouldn't be able to do that with the online version. Right?
 

Cory Cooper

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Ahhh...that sounds correct, but I am not sure. I wonder if it would work with three separate accounts? ;)

Maybe the external drive/Ethernet solution would be better in your situation?

C
 

Dave Hughes

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That might be the best way. I have 3 drives in my Mac; One has OS 10.6.8 so I can run Photoshop CS3, One has OS10.11.6 for the newer stuff, and one for Backup. I'm getting on in years, and not sure how much longer I'll be able to do what I want to do. May have to break down and get a newer model. Thanks for your help.
 

Cory Cooper

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No worries...I hope it works out for you.

Let us know how it goes,

C
 
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Dave Hughes

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Cory, I got a good deal on an iMac (21.5", 2017) so I'll just use it for stuff requiring the newer OS and keep my Mac Pro for my old Photoshop. Thanks for your input.
 

Harry Trent

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I need to upgrade my 2009 Mac Pro 4,1 to Sierra or High Sierra. I read a procedure on MacWorld that said there was a problem with wi-fi if there is a Broadcom BCM4321 module, which mine has. Anyone have info on this? I would prefer to keep my El Capitan, but TurboTax requires a later OS.
One simple and inexpensive solution is to purchase a Mac compatible USB Wife dongle. Just do a search on Amazon or ebay for one that is compatible with the OS X version you wish to run. You may have to install a driver for it to work but they usually provide that on an optical disc. This is what Hackintosh builders do.
 

Allen Davis

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Cory, I got a good deal on an iMac (21.5", 2017) so I'll just use it for stuff requiring the newer OS and keep my Mac Pro for my old Photoshop. Thanks for your input.
Just an FYI here, but I have a 2012 i7 Turbo MacBook Pro 13" and running the newest version of Mojave. I also have Adobe Creative Suite 4, and everything runs fine (although I do get a notification that the software isn't 64-bit and isn't entirely supported by Mojave, and that future versions of macOS won't run the software at all).

I did have to jump through a couple of hoops in Terminal to get it installed, but as I said, it runs fine. Better, in fact, than it did under Yosemite, El Capitan and Sierra (I skipped High Sierra altogether).
 
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ROBERT H. BAUCOM

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I need to upgrade my 2009 Mac Pro 4,1 to Sierra or High Sierra. I read a procedure on MacWorld that said there was a problem with wi-fi if there is a Broadcom BCM4321 module, which mine has. Anyone have info on this? I would prefer to keep my El Capitan, but TurboTax requires a later OS.
I've an early 2009 Apple Pro Tower, that I easily upgraded to 5.1 (AT&T). I've High Sierra OS10.13.6 on it. BUT, that upgrade rendered my HP LaserJet 2035 Printer unusable. I have 2 of them. So, I'll have to put Just Sierra on My 27" imac to use one of my printers. Luckily, bought a Brother HL-L-L2350DW Laser Printer, New, for just $95.00. After the many, many problems I had with a Brother Printer on my QuickSilver ... back in 2002, Swore I'd never buy another Brother Printer ... but this one works fine. Slow, but it prints. My Computer Guru #2 son, told me years ago to never upgrade. I've an HP1160 & the HP2035 (both, now unusable, LaserJets) that have proved the wisdom of his warning.
 

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