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How to install the macOS Big Sur public beta

Following the release of the iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 public betas, Apple is now following through with public access to the macOS Big Sur beta. This next big update for macOS is the jump to 11.0, and with it comes several big changes. The most noticeable difference, though not necessarily the most notable, is the revised design. Everything looks a little cleaner, with a look that’s really starting to resemble iOS.

In this article, we’re going to walk you through what’s new and how to get the beta onto your computer, should you want it. Once you install the beta, it will likely receive several updates between now and the final release, which we expect to happen later in 2020.

First, the usual warning: you should think twice, or even three times, before installing this software on your machine. If you rely on your computer to meet deadlines or other important work, using a beta might not be the best idea. Apple’s betas are usually fairly polished, but there’s always a chance of app incompatibilities, degraded performance, and data loss.

There’s a way to avoid some of this possible drama. If you’re using a machine with macOS High Sierra or later, you can use built-in tools to partition your hard drive so the beta can live in isolation. This way, you can test out the new features, then boot into your stable macOS partition with the rest of your data when you’re done. We’ll walk through that below as well.

Second, ensure that you have around 20GB of free space available on your hard drive before trying to install. The first public beta is 12.3GB.


Devices that support macOS Big Sur

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