macOS Big Sur (11.0)

Overview

macOS Big Sur (11.0) is a version of Apple Inc.'s operating system for Mac hardware released on November 12, 2020.

If you use specialized Academic software, or have installed unique personal software, please verify with the software publisher that it is compatible with macOS Big Sur before upgrading, or contact IT Services for assistance.

 

Important
macOS Big Sur only supports 64-bit applications. If you run 32-bit apps, please check if the software publisher has a 64-bit version available, or contact the Technical Support Center

 

Warning
Before any upgrade, we strongly recommend that you perform a backup of your system..

 

In this article:

 

Requirements

The following requirements must be met in order to install macOS Big Sur. However, some features, such as Sidecar, will only function on some of the newer models of Mac.

 

Hardware Requirements

  • RAM: At least 4 GB
  • Storage Space: 35.5 GB of available disk space

 

Supported Models

  • iMac: Late 2014, and later
  • MacBook: Early 2015, and later
  • MacBook Pro: Late 2013, and later
  • MacBook Air: 2013, and later
  • Mac Mini: 2014, and later
  • Mac Pro: 2013, and later

 

Hardware Incompatibility

With the release of macOS 11 Big Sur, Apple has disabled support of FireWire tethering. FireWire tethering is where a Mac computer, released after 2014, lacking built-in legacy FireWire ports uses a Thunderbolt to FireWire 800 adapter to allow older perherials with FireWire ports to be connected to newer Mac systems via their computer's Thunderbolt port.

This includes such devices as:

  • FireWire cameras
  • FireWire hard drives
  • FireWire scanners

If you still need to use existing FireWire perherials, we suggest disabling auto-update for macOS, and to not upgrade to macOS 11 Big Sur until you have identified, aquired, and validated replacement hardware to replace the legacy FireWire devices critical to your business processes.

 

Software Compatibility

The following software have been verified with macOS Big Sur.

  • Cisco AnyConnect VPN Client v4.9.02028, or later: Individuals must enable the AnyConnect system extension in their macOS Preferences Security & Privacy pane. A restart may be required after manually approving any AnyConnect extension. If you need to install the latest version you can install via one of the following methods:
    • UAA owned Mac device: Please use the UAA Software Portal application available within your Applications folder. If you do not see the UAA Software Portal in your Applications folder, please contact the UAA Technical Support Center for assistance.
    • Personally Owned device: Download the software from the UAA Software Downloads page.
  • Cisco Jabber for Mac v12.9.3, or latter: If you need to install the latest version you can install via one of the following methods:
    • UAA owned Mac device: Please use the UAA Software Portal application available within your Applications folder. If you do not see the UAA Software Portal in your Applications folder, please contact the UAA Technical Support Center for assistance.
    • Personally Owned device: Download the software from the UAA Software Downloads page.
  • Firefox 78.5.0 ESR and 83.0
  • Microsoft Office 2019 build 16.43, or later: UAA employees using UAA owned Mac devices can access the UAA Software Portal application available within your computers Applications folder. If you do not see the UAA Software Portal in your Applications folder, please contact the UAA Technical Support Center for assistance.
  • Microsoft 365 Apps for Enterprise build 16.43, or later: Individuals using personally owned devices are suggested to update to the latest release of Microsoft 365 Apps for enterprise.
  • Microsoft Remote Desktop v10.5.0 (1841), or later: If you need to install the latest version you can install via one of the following methods:
    • UAA owned Mac device: Please use the UAA Software Portal application available within your Applications folder. If you do not see the UAA Software Portal in your Applications folder, please contact the UAA Technical Support Center for assistance.
    • Personally Owned device: Download the software from the Apple App Store.
  • VMware Fusion v12, or later
  • Zoom v5.4.4 (58903.1122), or later: If you need to install the latest version you can install via one of the following methods:
    • UAA owned Mac device: Please use the UAA Software Portal application available within your Applications folder. If you do not see the UAA Software Portal in your Applications folder, please contact the UAA Technical Support Center for assistance.
    • Personally Owned device: Download the software from the Zoom Download Center page.

 

Software Incompatibility

The following software incompatibilities have been identified.

  • Big Sur does not support legacy System/Kernel Extensions (KEXTs)
  • Big Sur does not support 32-bit Applications
  • Big Sur does not support legacy media formats
  • Big Sur removes support for hosting shares using Apple File Protocol (AFP): Apple switched in 2013 from AFP to the more common Server Message Block (SMB) protocol; however, AFP has hung around in a deprecated state since then. As of Big Sur AFP hosted file share support has been removed entirely from the operating system. You can still connect to servers hosting AFP shares, you simply cannot host an AFP share from a system running Big Sur.
  • Safari in Big Sur does not support the following:
    • Legacy NPAPI browser plug-ins including Adobe Flash.
    • Older Safari Extensions packaged as .safariextz
  • Big Sur has an operating system (OS) version number of 11.x instead of 10.x - this could affect some older software installers and scripts if they check the OS version and expect to see 10.x format.
  • Big Sur does not support Dashboard applications/widgets
  • Big Sur has a dedicated and "signed" system volume - third party backup/cloning/disk repair software should be checked and updated/upgraded if necessary to work with this version of macOS.
  • Big Sur does not support Rosetta [1]/PowerPC software.
  • Adobe Acrobat X (10): Running Acrobat Pro 2015 or earlier is a high security risk.
  • Adobe Creative Suite (CS) 6: Several applications, such as Dreamweaver CS6 and InDesign CS6 are 32-bit applications; additionally, components of Adobe CS 6 may (appear) to require Apple Java v6. Unfortunately, Apple Java 6 was end-of-life in February 2013 and hasn't been updated since October 2013 which posses a security risk. Considering Adobe released CS 6 in April 2012, and it has been superseded by the Adobe Creative Cloud since June 2013, IT Services strongly recommends no longer using this version of the Adobe CS software.
  • Apple QuickTime Player 7: You can use QuickTime Player 10 included with macOS; however, it doesn't support all the video codecs/features that QuickTime 7 does.
  • Bare Bones BBedit v11/v12: Update to version 13.5.2 or later.
  • Bare Bones TextWrangler: Upgrade to BBedit 13.5.2 or later.
  • Cisco AnyConnect VPN Client (32-bit): If your AnyConnect client is no longer working after updating to macOS Big Sur, please uninstall it, and download the latest installer from the UAA Software Downloads page.
  • Fetch 5.7.6 and earlier: Individuals are suggested to update to the latest release of Fetch.
  • FileMaker Pro: Update to v19.1.3 or later.
  • Google Drive: Upgrade to Backup and Sync v3.36 or later, or Drive File Stream.
  • Microsoft Office 2011 and Office 2016: Individuals are suggested to update to the latest release of Microsoft Office 2019, or Microsoft 365 Apps for enterprise.
  • Parallels: Update to v16 or later.
  • VMware Fusion 11 and earlier: Individuals are suggested to update to VMware Fusion 12 or later.
  • Wacom tablets: Update driver to v6.3.41-2 or later.

 

Checking Which Installed Applications are 32-Bit

macOS 10.14, or later

If you are running macOS 10.14, or later, you can check to see which applications are 32-bit as follows. This can take a few minutes if you have a lot of applications installed.

  1. Click the Apple menu.
  2. Click About This Mac.
  3. Click the System Report... button.
    • The System Information application will open.
  4. In the left column scroll down to the Software section, and click on Legacy Software.
    • No information found: If this is displayed, you have no software installed that is incompatible with Big Sur.

 

macOS 10.13, and earlier

If you are running macOS 10.13, or earlier, you can check to see which applications are 32-bit as follows. This can take a few minutes if you have a lot of applications installed.

  1. Click the Apple menu.
  2. Click About This Mac.
  3. Click the System Report... button.
    • The System Information application will open.
  4. In the left column scroll down to the Software section, and click on Applications.
  5. In the right panel click on the 64-Bit (Intel) column to group applications.
  6. Check for items listed as No.
    • Some of the items listed may be system software that will be updated when the a new Operating System is installed. You'll want to look for third-party software (e.g. Microsoft Office, Fetch, Cisco AnyConnect, etc.) that you use that have a no in this column.

 

Need additional help or have issues

For additional assistance contact the IT Services Technical Support Center via phone at (907) 786-4646, toll-free at (877) 633-3888, email us at uaa.techsupport@alaska.edu, or you can use the Seawolf Tech Portal to submit a support ticket.

Details

Article ID: 386
Created
Thu 11/12/20 1:32 PM
Modified
Tue 7/26/22 4:05 PM