Does Yosemite really work well on older machines?

Discussion in 'OS X Yosemite (10.10)' started by Anorak783, Dec 28, 2014.

  1. Anorak783 macrumors newbie

    Dec 28, 2014

    As I'm on the brink of buying an iPhone and iPad, I was thinking of upgrading my 2007 MacBook Pro (3,1 Intel Core 2 Duo 2.4 GHz 4GB RAM) right the way up from Snow Leopard to Yosemite so I get some kind of compatibility between the three devices (actually, I would have been happier installing Mavericks, but that's no longer available from the App Store).

    Thing is - my Mac is right on the edge of Yosemite compatibility and on the web (including this site) there's a LOT of negative comment about Yosemite on older Macs.

    Should I upgrade? Does anyone have any POSITIVE stories about Yosemite on older machines - I've yet to read one. Or should I wait for some more patches to be released before taking the plunge.

    Thanks in advance for any and all advice offered.
  2. Sirious macrumors 65816


    Jan 2, 2013
    United Kingdom
    You've answered your question yourself :p
  3. dilap macrumors 6502a

    Apr 18, 2014
    London, UK
    I have a MBA 2010 on Yosemite and it works fine, aside from a few standard bugs you would have on any OS
  4. vista980622 macrumors 6502

    Aug 2, 2012
    My 2011 Mac mini (with SSD) runs Yosemite acceptably. But definitely slower than Mavericks.

    If I'm you, I'll just call Apple Support and ask for a redeem code of OS X Mavericks. Or ask my friend who has downloaded Mavericks before.
  5. Duff-Man macrumors 68030


    Dec 26, 2002
    Albuquerque, NM
    Duff-Man says...I'm guessing there has been a thread for "how does Yosemite run" on just about every combination on Mac that is even capable of running the OS officially.

    I've got it on my early '08 MBP with 4GB ram and while it's not my main computer, for what I use it for it does just fine - no worse than 10.9 or even 10.8....oh yeah!
  6. PeterHolbrook macrumors 6502a

    Sep 23, 2009
    I have an unsupported Mac Pro 1,1. The last supported OS it could run was Lion. Even so, this machine has been able to run all later systems (i.e., Mountain Lion, Mavericks and now Yosemite) really well.

    Two things are necessary for it to run these operating systems natively: 1) a supported graphics card; 2) a custom-made boot.efi capable of passing 64-bit calls from the 64-bit kernel to the 32-bit EFI. Once that is achieved and the system is booted, it works as well as it used to when it ran Snow Leopard, or even better. It even has Continuity and Handoff!
  7. Badagri macrumors 6502a

    Aug 9, 2012
    So are people complaining about this on their 2014 Mac's.
  8. robkat macrumors member


    Dec 22, 2008
    Running Yosemite on late 2008 iMac. no problems at all.
  9. KALLT macrumors 601

    Sep 23, 2008
    I run Yosemite on a 2008 aluminium MacBook (13 inch, 2.4 Ghz Intel Core 2 Duo). Now, I can't compare the performance of Snow Leopard with Yosemite, but I strongly suspect that the responsiveness of your system will take a decent hit. I upgraded my RAM to 8 GB and replaced my HD with an SSD a couple of years ago just to gain an acceptable performance. I'm happy with the trade-off I made to keep running the latest software, but if you rely on performance, I would keep a backup in place just in case.
  10. SandboxGeneral Moderator emeritus


    Sep 8, 2010
    FWIW I have an early 2008 iMac, 24", with a 3.06 Ghz C2D and 6 GB of RAM and it's running Yosemite just fine.
  11. nightlong macrumors 6502a


    Jun 16, 2012
    Late 2007 imac with 4GB RAM ... has slowed it down a little, but it is usable. SSD would no doubt improve it, but I don't want to invest in this, it is no longer my main computer and is okay for what I use it for now.
  12. grahamperrin macrumors 601


    Jun 8, 2007
  13. Bkxmnr macrumors regular


    Feb 9, 2009
    Wichita, KS
    Works fine on my Early 2009 MacMini with SSD.
  14. BasicGreatGuy Contributor


    Sep 21, 2012
    In the middle of several books.
    Yosemite put a real strain on the stock HDD 5400 rpm that was in my late 2011 MBP. Lots of app bouncing, beach balls, and even preferences was slow to open a lot of the time. I replaced the stock HDD with a SDD and everything is running smooth again.
  15. PurrBall macrumors 65816


    Oct 25, 2007
    Yosemite is pretty slow on my Early 2009 iMac on a clean install.

    It works great on my 2011 MBP 15" with an SSD, but that should be a given since it's still faster than the latest 13" retina.
  16. grahamperrin macrumors 601


    Jun 8, 2007
    Yosemite compared to what?

    Compared to what – Mavericks, or something less?
  17. TonyK macrumors 6502a


    May 24, 2009
    Installed 10.10 on both a late 2007 MBP (17") with 4GB memory and a 2009 Mac Mini. Both have long boot times but after that are good to go. No complaints so far.
  18. Morpheo macrumors 65816


    Feb 26, 2014
    Installed Yosemite on my 1,1 MacPro and 2009 Macmini (supported) the day it came out. Flawless upgrade on both machines (MacPro was already running Mavericks so I knew the procedure in order to install Yosemite). Since then Yosemite has been running perfectly. I liked Mavericks but I'm more than fine (and dare I say, still "at home" despite the UI changes...) with Yosemite.
  19. BasicGreatGuy Contributor


    Sep 21, 2012
    In the middle of several books.
    My system came with Lion, which ran well. With Mavericks, I started seeing beach balls, more pronounced bouncing, and a slight slow down compared to Lion. Yosemite magnified all of those symptoms on my machine.
  20. grahamperrin macrumors 601


    Jun 8, 2007

    Given enough detail, there'll be logical explanations for each of those things. I don't wish to go off-topic here so please see, for example: – Observable icon services
  21. Anorak783 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 28, 2014
    Thanks for the advice everyone.

    For the time being, I think I'll download Mavericks from a friend's AppStore account (with his knowledge, of course!) and wait until the next upgrade for Yosemite comes out.
  22. NT1440 macrumors G4


    May 18, 2008
    Running Yosemite on a 2008 iMac here at work with no problems.
  23. afsnyder macrumors 65816

    Jan 7, 2014
    All my friends that have OS X Yosemite installed on their Macbook Pros have seen less graphical lag than on my newer Retina Macbook Pro... It's kinda sad. Your lucky may vary.
  24. interstella macrumors regular


    Sep 29, 2013
    Suffolk, England
    Yosemite doesn't really work well on modern machines so it's something of a miracle if it works on computers that are several years old. Yosemite = Windows Vista. Can't be bothered to go into detail at this time of night but so many bugs that it really should not have been let loose on an unsuspecting public.

    Still better than Windows 8 but you can't say " it just works". It's a case of "it works, just"!

    Awaiting incoming flack from the fanbois!
  25. addictive macrumors regular

    Jul 6, 2008
    Not worth it for a 2008 Macbook Unibody

    I have a truly wonderful 2008 aluminium MacBook (13 inch, 2.4 Ghz Intel Core 2 Duo), its getting old now and heavy (who needs an optical drive?) and battery life sucks. I upgraded my machine to 8GB RAM and a 256 Crucial SSD. Amazing how much difference a couple of alterations can make.

    I've updated each OSX iteration and all have worked very well.

    I enjoyed Mavericks the most, everything seemed to work so well together, efficient and fast.

    The day Yosemite was released I upgraded to that. I've struggled for more than two months with it. I spend all day on Safari but I was getting the spinning beachball much of the time despite 8GB RAM.

    My computer began to crawl at the things it used to be able to do in its stride. It crashed a fair few times compared to never crashing on previous OSX versions.

    Finally yesterday, I had experienced too much stress with it that I backed up my Time Machine and went back to using Mavericks and the last 24 hours have taken me back to how good the Mac can be as a computer.

    I will miss the receiving calls feature on my desktop and I quite liked the look of Yosemite but it felt half finished.

    I'm keeping Mavericks on this 2008 Macbook until I purchase a new Mac probably in 2016 after the successor to Yosemite.

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