Can't upgrade to El Capitan


DanL

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I'm trying to upgrade a MBP mid-2012 from 10.9.5 to El Capitan. (I only want that, in order to ensure it's consistency with some other machines I have around). I go to https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT206886, select to download it, and it tells me I can't on this machine. Huh??? What am I missing?
 

Cory Cooper

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Unfortunately, that page states:
If you still need OS X El Capitan, use this App Store link: Get El Capitan. To download it, your Mac must be using macOS High Sierra or earlier.
Do you have a Mac running High Sierra, or know of someone that does?

C
 
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DanL

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I don't understand. I'm running Mavericks, which IS High Sierra or earlier. It's a LOT earlier.
 

Cory Cooper

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Ooops...my bad. I read that wrong. Sorry.

Are you getting this error:
2911


If so, try signing out and singing back into the App Store. If you have downloaded it previously, see if it is your Purchased section and you should be able to download it there.

C
 

DanL

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No, what I'm getting is

2913


Which is patently false. If I click on "Learn More", it flings me to a page all about Mavericks. Duh?

If I go to the App store, and search for "El Capitan" all it shows me is a server version and other "learning" junk.

I think I ran into this once before, and ended up just downloading it from a third party (and praying that it was a clean copy). This is really pretty unpleasant. Seems like Apple very carefully wants NO ONE to get old OS versions. I should be able to get an OS without pulling it from a third-party.
 
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Cory Cooper

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Yes, it is strange.

-Did you check the Purchased section of the App Store?
-Maybe try the Purchased section on the other Macs that are running El Capitan and download it there?
-Maybe you could visit an Apple Store near you and they could get it installed?

C
 

DanL

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Thank you. Going to "Purchased" in the App Store gives me the opportunity to download it. We'll see if, once downloaded, I am allowed to install it. Not clear why I have to have purchased it to have it accessible, and not clear why my original route for getting it failed.
 

Cory Cooper

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Not sure why it failed via the website link.

Let us know how it goes,

C
 

honestone

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I understand your frustration, DanL. Apple has been getting more and more "anal" about this. I have always upgraded the OS whenever a new one comes out (but only after 6 of my critical applications have upgrades available for compatibility with the newer OS). After I downloaded Sierra, it subsequently did not appear in my Purchased Items. Same with High Sierra. And when I did it recently with Mojave, now ALL of my OS purchased items are gone! And Mojave is not there either! Fortunately, after I download the newer OS, I first save a copy of it in another location (also goes on my SuperDuper! backup) before I do the clean, fresh installation of the new OS. (I actually still have the installation files for Sierra and High Sierra).

So, it would be best if you save a copy of El Capitan first after you download it.

I assume you have a backup. So, if you want to check to see if your version of El Capitan is OK (assume it is the last version, OS 10.11.6, right?), you can download, install, and run the following programs (in the order listed):

1. Malwarebytes - https://www.malwarebytes.com/mwb-download/

That free program does an admirable job of finding adware/malware.

2. ClamXAV - https://www.clamxav.com/

That excellent program goes "deeper" than Malwarebytes. Note that you can use a free trial of it, and it has full functionality. If you run ClamXAV, let it scan your entire internal drive. That will take some time, but better to be safe than sorry.
 
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DanL

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I have completed my upgrade to ElCap driect through Apple. But, as I said, the only way I could locate it at the AppStore was to look at software I purchased (thank you, Cory, for suggesting that). Now, I sure never shelled out any money for ElCap before, so I have no idea why the AppStore assumed that I "purchased it" nor why it had to be listed that way in order for me to get it. I have to assume that by making it REALLY HARD to install older operating systems, Apple is pushing people pretty hard to upgrade to the latest. Of course, as machines get older, they can't install the newest operating systems, so accessibility of the old ones gets more important.

Honestone, I assume your suggestion of ad/malware detectors was to check on the cleanliness of a third party copy. That's a good idea, and I use Malwarebytes anyway, but in principle, at an OS-level, people can do really nasty stuff that those detectors won't be sensitive to. If you own the OS, you can do ANYTHING. Interesting suggestion about saving the installation files, but if you get it from the AppStore, I don't think you get any such files. The AppStore just does all the installation work.
 
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Cory Cooper

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The reason it was listed in your Purchased section, is that all apps/software that are free/purchased and downloaded from the App Store are shown there.

Glad you got it completed.

C
 

honestone

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I have completed my upgrade to ElCap driect through Apple. But, as I said, the only way I could locate it at the AppStore was to look at software I purchased (thank you, Cory, for suggesting that). Now, I sure never shelled out any money for ElCap before, so I have no idea why the AppStore assumed that I "purchased it" nor why it had to be listed that way in order for me to get it. I have to assume that by making it REALLY HARD to install older operating systems, Apple is pushing people pretty hard to upgrade to the latest. Of course, as machines get older, they can't install the newest operating systems, so accessibility of the old ones gets more important.

Honestone, I assume your suggestion of ad/malware detectors was to check on the cleanliness of a third party copy. That's a good idea, and I use Malwarebytes anyway, but in principle, at an OS-level, people can do really nasty stuff that those detectors won't be sensitive to. If you own the OS, you can do ANYTHING. Interesting suggestion about saving the installation files, but if you get it from the AppStore, I don't think you get any such files. The AppStore just does all the installation work.
First, when you download the latest full version of the Mac OS from the App Store, at the end of the download, it asks if you want to proceed with the installation. You can just not do that. There will then be a file entitled "install macOS Sierra" (for example) inside your Applications folder. You can then make a copy of it somewhere else. If you do let the installation process continue, at the end of that, that "install macOS whatever" file is deleted. Hence, that is why it's a good idea to make a copy of it somewhere else first.

As for checking out the Mac OS you downloaded, maybe Malwarebytes is not robust enough, but ClamXAV certainly is. So maybe just run it.
 

DanL

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Hmm. Interesting about the install file that is hiding in my applications folder. I'm still not clear why Apple makes it so hard to get. Now, I'm not worried about the OS I downoaded from Apple not being clean. But if I download it from MacUpdate, or Tom's, goodness knows what might be hiding in it.
 

honestone

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I always thought MacUpdate was to be trusted. Also, when one downloads a file via their site, it either typically "takes" you to the applicable site for the download, or downloads the file from that same site without issues. Don't know what Tom's is.

Again, though, you should run ClamXAV. It is actually quite a capable virus detection program that also catches adware/malware. I run it every so often, and I downloaded the latest Mojave Installer from the App Store.
 

DanL

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Well, I can cross my fingers and always think that anyone can be trusted. No reason to do so, however. I HAVE to trust Apple. MalwareBytes works for me, and it is free. It never has really found anything so I don't think I'm a risk-prone user.
 

honestone

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Downloading the Mac OS from the App Store is fine, and thus the file should be clean. Yes, Malwarebytes is a good program, but there have been a couple of instances where ClamXAV found some nefarious "stuff" that Malwarebytes did not "see". IT can't hurt to download and run it, but it's up to you. I'd rather be safe than sorry.
 

DanL

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I did the Free Trial for ClamXAV, and yes, it found Smokyashan garbage that MalwareByes didn't. Not clear if that justifies paying $30/year for it, though. Not clear which application was using it, but it seemed to have been emplaced on my machine two years ago. Now, very strangely, MalwareBytes SAYS that it gets rid of Smokyashan, though that may just be the app and redirect. I just had a plist from it which, in itself, is unlikely to hurt anything.
 
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honestone

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It would still be best to get rid of that questionable plist file. As for the $30/year for ClamXAV, initially I had the same thoughts as you, but when it found some stuff that Malwarebytes did not "see", I felt it was worth the $30/year. And the way things are these days, anything can "sneak" onto one's machine no matter how careful one is.
 

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