Snow Leopard to El Capitan

Discussion in 'OS X El Capitan (10.11)' started by rosenthalm1, Oct 16, 2015.

  1. rosenthalm1 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2014
    #1
    Hi All,

    I have a 2010 Imac 27" with 4GB Ram and 1 TB of HD space left. I run Snow Leopard and love it, however Itunes and some other things are not able to upgrade anymore unless I upgrade my OS. My question is, will El Capitan run okay on 4GB of Ram? I don't want a major slow down and love the look of Snow Leopard, but I also love new things and am wanting to be able to upgrade my apps and have more compatability with IOS 9. Please advise on your experiences.

    Thanks,
    Matt
     
  2. RobFog macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2012
    #2
    * compatibility

    - You're better off with an SSD instead of a HD.
    - 4GB of RAM is too little, especially in combination with a HD.
     
  3. rosenthalm1 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 20, 2014
    #3
    What is SSD? Every Mac has a Hard Drive. Why do they say 2GB Ram required if 4GB won't run?
     
  4. BrettApple macrumors 65816

    BrettApple

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2010
    Location:
    Heart of the midwest
    #4
    Honestly, if you don't do a heck of a lot on that iMac, it should run just fine.

    I've got over 50 Macs at my workplace that I manage and we have them from 2007 to current.

    I just did an upgrade on one that was used for ProPresenter and lighting to El Capitan and it is a Late 2009 21.5" model with a Core 2 Duo, 4GB RAM, 500GB HDD, and a 9400m.

    Performance is still perfectly acceptable for running Ableton Live 9, ProPresenter, Byron Vista, and general web browsing/MS Office 2016.

    That being said, I would highly recommend an SSD, I've been putting them in a lot of our Macs as the hard drives die (2007-2013 models thus far) and it makes a huge difference. More so than the RAM if you aren't doing heavy multitasking, even then I'd go for an SSD first. They are user installable if you can follow a guide and are careful.
     
  5. Morpheo macrumors 65816

    Morpheo

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2014
    Location:
    Paris/Montreal
    #5
    It's not that it won't run, it's that it will be slow. That's why they call it minimum system requirements ;) 2GB or 4GB is really not much these days.

    As for the SSD (Solid State Drive), the only thing you need to know is that they are much, much faster than regular HDs. If you want more details, have fun with this wiki page: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solid-state_drive :)
     
  6. rosenthalm1 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 20, 2014
  7. Morpheo macrumors 65816

    Morpheo

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    Feb 26, 2014
    Location:
    Paris/Montreal
    #7
  8. rosenthalm1 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 20, 2014
    #8
  9. Ebenezum macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2015
    #9
    It also depends on what kind of software you use. For light use 4 GB could be enough. If you have more demanding needs I recommend at least 8 GB.

    You probably won't enjoy El Capitan without SSD because 10.9 and newer is considerable slower on hard drive compared to Snow Leopard.

    I also recommend waiting 2 or 3 updates to El Capitan before upgrading, I am not saying you will certainly have problems but if you look at El Capitan bug threads in this forum there are serious problems with some software (both Apple and third party).
     
  10. rosenthalm1 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 20, 2014
    #10

    Does SDD replace HD? Do you remove HD to install an SDD? If so can you send a link to purchase one?
     
  11. rosenthalm1 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 20, 2014
    #11
    Would I just get an SSD large enough for the OS or do I need it for all of my files and apps?
     
  12. Ebenezum macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2015
    #12
    Yes SSD replaces HD. You need a 3.5>2.5 adapter because SSD is much smaller and its hard to secure without one. You can find instructions here. Its not exactly trivial so if your not certain it might be better to leave install to professional. Any SATA SSD will work, its up to you which model you want.
     
  13. MacRobert10 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2012
    #13
    You can get by with 4GB of RAM, however you will notice an increase in page out/swapping.

    You might want to try it on either a test volume or an external drive first. El Capitan will seem like a turtle compared to Snow Leopard and you may not be impressed.
     
  14. Toutou macrumors 6502a

    Toutou

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2015
    Location:
    Prague, Czech Republic
    #14
    I have a 4 GB rMBP and i would say (from my experience) that four gigs of RAM in OS X, as of today, is enough for hobby DSLR photo editing (I do that), programming (I do that), web browsing of any kind (I do that a lot), watching 4k video (I've done that) and multitasking with around ten apps open (I use it that way), with memory pressure still in green (I can see that). It works, it isn't slow, it isn't limiting. If this guy needs to ask on Macrumors whether 4 GB is enough, he's not a pro photo/video/audio maker/editor/whatever user who knows his hardware needs.

    To OP: Get an SSD, those things are dirt cheap and make a huuuge difference. Only worry about the RAM if there's a need (or spare cash :D).
     
  15. fessen macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 4, 2011
    #15
    I tested El Capitan beta for a couple of days with my 2009 MacBook Pro running a HDD. (It's a 7500 rpm upgraded HDD, not the original 5400 rpm HDD). I didn't do extensive testing, but for just browsing the web and watching youtube videos, the HDD was just fine for El Capitan.

    I'm not saying don't get an SSD if you want one and can afford one. Just that you won't necessarily be crippled in El Capitan if you only have a HDD. As with anything, it depends on what you will be using the computer to do.

    I'm sticking with Snow Leopard until reliable third-party drivers are available for El Capitan for certain devices I use.
     
  16. leman macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    #16
    It will run fine with 4GB. People tend to have very high expectations nowadays :D I mean, its a 2010 computer after all and it will of course be much slower than a 2015 computer, but it won't be that much slower than it already is with 10.6
     
  17. bmac89 macrumors 6502a

    bmac89

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2014
    #17
    Dirt Cheap!? Am I missing something!!!!?
     
  18. Ebenezum macrumors 6502a

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    Mar 31, 2015
    #18
    In my experience 10.6 is much faster in older Macs with hard drives when compared to 10.9-10.11. I am not saying 10.11 will be too slow for normal use but later OS versions are more demanding and it's likely OP will notice the difference between 10.6 and 10.11 in speed.
     
  19. BrettApple macrumors 65816

    BrettApple

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2010
    Location:
    Heart of the midwest
    #19
    You may have, SSDs have come down a ton in the last few years. I put a 120GB SSD in my 2008 MacBook back in 2011/12 and it was nearly $200. I can get the same size/speed for under/at $50 today. Even 256GB drives are well under $100 for the 850 EVO and MX200/BX100.

    "Cheap" is relative of course, but I'd say under $50 for a major performance boost is pretty cheap. Provided you don't have a lot of media or use external storage.

    [​IMG]
     
  20. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #20
    OP:

    What follows is my opinion only.

    With a 2010 vintage iMac, you may be disappointed with how El Capitan runs from the internal platter-based hard disk drive.
    That's to say, your overall experience may S-L-O-W D-O-W-N somewhat.
    Perhaps a great deal.

    Whether or not one may be bothered by such slowdowns is "a personal thing". What bothers me may not bother you.

    So....

    If you DO decide to try the upgrade, MAKE SURE that you create a BOOTABLE CLONED BACKUP (using either CarbonCopyCloner or SuperDuper) on an external drive BEFORE you install El Capitan.

    If you are unhappy with the upgrade, a bootable cloned backup makes it EASY to "get back to where you once belonged" with your older OS.

    If you skip the above, you may find it very difficult to go back.

    One other thought:
    WIth a 2010 iMac, I would suggest you try OS 10.8.5 "Mountain Lion".
    This will "move you forward" somewhat, but won't clog up the older iMac...

    Again, my opinion only.
    Others will disagree.
    Some will disagree vehemently.
     

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