In the ever-changing world of technology, it is important to stay up to date both to protect against vulnerabilities in older software, and to ensure compatibility with new technologies. Apple has a more rapid release and end-of-life cycle than is common, releasing a new OSX version most years, and supporting only the two most recent versions at any given time. Versions 10.5 and 10.6 are now outdated (the current version is 10.8 and 10.9 is imminent) and those campus computers still using them need to be updated. As we have done with past updates, we want to offer those still using OS X on College computers an opportunity to choose a time to upgrade between now and February 1, 2014.
Contact the Help Desk (x7440, email@example.com) to request an appointment with a technician to discuss your upgrade.
Please note: if you are currently using 10.7 (Lion) or 10.8 (Mountain Lion), or your computer is due for a replacement in the summer/fall of 2013, you do not need to act. If you are unsure what version of OS X you have, open "About this Mac" from your Apple menu or contact us (x7440, firstname.lastname@example.org) for assistance.
If you have additional computers in your lab or your department which are running 10.5 or 10.6, it is also time to address these; please plan a time to talk with a technician about whether these can be moved and how to go about it. In most cases, both hardware and software which operated in the earlier versions will work properly in 10.8.
Why is this change necessary?
Keeping current means that computers will be able to receive new security updates, be compliant with new software, and conform with new network needs. Several upcoming projects and service offerings will be able to take advantage of new operating system features, and the new versions are better suited to support common tools and Internet use.
As noted previously, Apple has a more rapid release and end-of-life cycle than is common, releasing a new OSX version most years, and supporting only the two most recent versions at any given time. Versions 10.5 and 10.6 are now outdated (the current version is 10.8 and 10.9 is imminent) and those campus computers still using them need to be updated. Apple has already ceased updates to these versions, resulting in emerging vulnerabilities.
What OS X version will I get?
At the time of this posting, we are moving to Mountain Lion (10.8), but may begin implementing Mavericks (10.9) in the late fall or early spring if it is released in early fall as expected.
What's different about Mountain Lion?
Some things look different, but major functions are the same. Take a look at Apple's What's New for details.
How will the upgrade work?
A technician will meet with you and understand your software and configuration. Next, your data will be carefully backed up, and a new Mac OS X configuration will be installed on your computer. The technician will then restore your data and your programs, allowing you to continue to work. This process may take up to several hours, so please ensure that you choose a time that allows for you to be without your computer. You will need to be present at the beginning and end of the process, but need not be present throughout. If you have any specific concerns, please be sure to discuss them with your technician before the upgrade process begins.