Still can't decide whether to stay on EC or downgrade to Mavericks

Discussion in 'OS X El Capitan (10.11)' started by quaresma, Mar 1, 2016.

  1. quaresma macrumors member


    Jan 20, 2013
    Hi guys.

    I have a MacBook Air Early 2014.

    I loved the performance in Mavericks when I first got the MacBook. I'm now on El Cap, and while the performance is not *bad*, it's still not as snappy as Mavericks.

    I may be going back to Mavericks, but first some questions:

    - Is Mavericks as secure as El Capitan? The whole FBI thing is scary, and I want my data to be as private and anonymous as possible. Can I just enable Filevault 2 on Mavericks and be safe?

    - What will I miss if I go back to Mavericks? I don't use all the Apple apps, so using outdated versions on Mavericks don't matter.

    - What is YOUR experience with El Cap on a MacBook air with 4GB ram?

  2. fisherking macrumors 603


    Jul 16, 2010
    ny somewhere
    10.11.4 should be here any day, and...down the line, there will be more incremental updates (with bug fixes, lighter code, enhancements). why not ride it out? personally, i think moving forward makes more sense than moving backwards. but ultimately, you have to decide what works best...for you.
  3. KALLT macrumors 601

    Sep 23, 2008
    I went back to Mavericks and have not regretted it. Security is difficult to say, as Mavericks still receives security updates, but not all fixes are applied to it. This either means that these issues do not affect Mavericks to begin with or are not trivial to patch. That being said, I doubt that you are in a much riskier position.

    What will you miss? Unfortunately, there are some developers who decided to cut the cord when they revamped their applications for Yosemite and it really shows. You can check this in the Mac App Store if you use it, but for me this concerns, for example, 1Password, Reeder and all of Apple's applications in the App Store (e.g. Pages, Keynote). I have to use older versions of these applications. Safari also loses some of the great new additions, such as the new extensions and the favourites view. If you already switched to the Photos application, then that is not available either. You'd have to go back to iPhoto, if available, or find an alternative.
  4. fisherking macrumors 603


    Jul 16, 2010
    ny somewhere
    so, deal with all of that or...keep what he has? seems like an easy answer to me. i mean, what's the benefit? i'd rather be doing my real work, than sorting all that out.

    just hard to understand why some people move backwards. eventually, you'll want a certain app, or you'll get a new mac...and you'll be moving forward one way or another. to each his (or her) own (i guess)...
  5. KALLT macrumors 601

    Sep 23, 2008
    I do not care, I am content with it. Mavericks is just much, much nicer to work with that it outbalances the loss of some functionality in third-party applications. I still keep El Capitan around on an external drive, but whenever I boot into it I feel like something is wrong with my eyesight (and it is not). My MacBook also runs cooler with Mavericks.
  6. fisherking macrumors 603


    Jul 16, 2010
    ny somewhere
  7. Ebenezum macrumors 6502a

    Mar 31, 2015

    1. Mavericks receives security updates so I wouldn't worry about it. Using older OS X version even after Apple stops releasing security updates is relatively safe compared to Windows assuming you don't install Flash or other extensions which have vulnerabilities.

    In theory El Capitan is more secure because of some changes made by Apple (SIP, application security etc.) but in practice its hard to say because El Capitan has been out only a short time.

    2. If you use Photos or Notes switching to other software could be a pain because export functions leave a lot to be desired but all other software should work just fine (assuming you haven't purchased anything that requires 10.10 or 10.11).

    I don't use Macbook Air so I can't comment on that but in my case Mavericks works both faster and more stable than El Capitan in Mac Pro 2009 and iMac 2007. I have no desire to install it again because I got fed up with too many bugs and harmful changes. I am finally productive and unless Apple seriously improves future OS X versions I plan to stay in Mavericks (I only purchase software from developers who support older OS versions so I doubt I need to "upgrade" in several years). :D
  8. Isamilis macrumors 6502a

    Apr 3, 2012
    I also moved back to mavericks. My eyes is much healthier using Mavericks, and its more snappy. I missed the old notes, unfortunately I have upgraded my notes, no way to sync again with the old notes in Mavericks. Other than that, all settled.

  9. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    10.10 and 10.11 have introduced a number of very nice improvements on the dev side of things, which dramatically cut time of building software. In one or two years the pre-Yosemite system share will fall below 5-10%, so I would be surprised if many newer apps drop support for 10.9. I understand that some people might disagree with the new design Apple has devised for OS X, but I'm afraid they'll have to upgrade sooner or later or jump ship altogether.
  10. KALLT macrumors 601

    Sep 23, 2008
    Of course, I do not think that anyone denies this. I will see how it goes and once it becomes too annoying, I will consider my options again. But at the moment, I like the fact that my fans are not as noisy as with Yosemite/El Capitan. :)
  11. bobr1952 macrumors 68020


    Jan 21, 2008
    Melbourne, FL
    I guess everyone's experience can be different but my 2012 MacBook Pro is a lot more stable with El Capitan than it ever was with Mavericks. I waited until a month or so ago to upgrade but the upgrade went smoothly and my MacBook has been speedy and rock solid since the upgrade.
  12. Ebenezum macrumors 6502a

    Mar 31, 2015
    Eventually that will happen but I am fairly certain it will take longer, 3-4 years. It is not in developers interest to annoy their customers. Raising requirements that fast would create a lot of bad will and I doubt most established developers would drop support before most of their customers have upgraded to newer OS X...
  13. KALLT macrumors 601

    Sep 23, 2008
    I read about ‘stability’ very often, but what does that even mean? Did applications crash (more) often on Mavericks? Did other weird things happen that do not happen anymore? OS X has always been ‘stable’ for me, but the performance has degraded on my machine.
  14. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    You are right of course, but 10.10 and 10.11 together already account for 80% or more of the install base. In a year it will be 90-95%
  15. Ebenezum macrumors 6502a

    Mar 31, 2015
    While that is likely the case for general population I suspect the numbers vary greatly depending on the developer. Since very few developers publish details about their user base its hard to say for sure. Most of the software I use supports 10.7 as the minimum, some have recently increased requirements to 10.8. I am fairly certain I have no need to upgrade for at least 3 years unless something changes drastically. I will not be updating software unless it provides clear improvements and not just support for new OS...
  16. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    Makes sense. I was specifically talking about new software and smaller developers. It should be quite certain that the big apps will retain compatibility with older versions for quite some time.
  17. garysauctions macrumors member

    Dec 15, 2010
    I just dumped EL CAPITAN and reverted back to YOSEMITE because I want to ......

    DO MY REAL WORK !!!!!

    I had a EL CAPITAN install until one day the iMac refused to boot.
    My external drives with Yosemite booted and worked fine.
    So maybe the internal HDD had died ...... right?
    So I buy a new HDD for external boot and installed EL CAPITAN.
    Well that install died as well ..... on boot up it just shut down.

    I just created a thread here discussing my problems.

    However will all the failed EC installs, my old backup boot drive with Yosemite continues to work.

    So in light of that I just installed Yosemite back onto the internal HDD and will see how it goes after a week.

    Like I said this 2011 iMac is NOT A TOY and I use it for my REAL WORK !!!!

    If this was a hobby toy and I had time to waste on it ...... I would plug away at El Capitan but as of the moment El Capitan is BANNED here !!!!!

    What the hell are " Web Content Failures " anyway ?????

    I saw those messages popup randomly before the death of each install.

    As far as needing to " move forward " ( as you put it ) to get a new app ...... I had to laugh at that. Did I mention I am still rocking my iPad that is of the FIRST GENERATION. Funny thing is that is does everything I bought it to do ...... and more! ( My employer gave me a 2nd Gen iPad when they first came out ...... I did not like the form factor so I sold it and brought my First Gen iPad to work )
    --- Post Merged, Mar 5, 2016 ---

    As one who actually uses my computers for income generation I am 200% in agreement with you.

    I have hard original copies of every piece of software we use here .... so it's not like a web based subscription distribution where you may be forced to upgrade at some point.

    By the time I am forces to upgrade ..... maybe EL CAPITAN will be debugged and useable ..... but by then two newer versions will be released.

    Anyone know what Apple DELETED the RAID option from Disk Utility in El Capitan ...... I know the option is still there but you have to use Terminal to access it. At least in Yosemite setting up a RAID is still in DISK UTILITY !!!

  18. oldmacs macrumors 601


    Sep 14, 2010
    I find it interesting how people's experiences vary. My 10.10 experience was initially great - I installed it over 10.9 and it fixed things, but gradually it got bad. Did a clean install of 10.10 which went very bad, (kernel panics etc), did 10.11 as a clean install and it fixed things up again. Who knows why.

    Mavericks will be getting security updates till 10.12 comes out, so you'll probably get security patches until October 2016, then you're on your own.

    I personally had a huge number of issues with Mavericks, and wouldn't ever go back to it. Have you tried a clean install of El Cap?
  19. garysauctions, Mar 5, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2016

    garysauctions macrumors member

    Dec 15, 2010
    Personally all I ever do is clean installs ..... never upgrade, not since that debacle with MS Win95. No sir, no more upgrading .... clean installs only.

    My last attempt at 10.11 went like this .......

    1) Disconnected and/removed ALL HDD's and thumb drives from my Mid2011 iMac
    2) Connected iMac to router via ethernet
    3) Turned on iMac and over the net it began the 10.11 install
    (At this point I should not this is the first time I installed over the internet.)
    4) Install finished I began to test/chck the install and almost immediately began seeing issues.
    5) Realizing that I needed to do some REAL WORK and not play with the computer I shut down and did a clean reinstall of 10.10

    When I say a 'clean install' I mean really clean in that I reparation/reformat the target HDD with several partition configs to make sure nothing remains.

    EDIT: I may take this iMac into Apple tomorrow to let them have a look at it ..... could be a problem lurks inside and it only manifests itself when 10.11 is installed. But really, how likely is that ???

  20. fisherking macrumors 603


    Jul 16, 2010
    ny somewhere


    lots of us use our macs for our work, and, for many, el capitan is a good thing. check out these very forums; lots of people hated yosemite,'re happy with it.

    we all have different experiences, and they're all valuable. unless EVERYONE is having the same's something on your mac, with your hardware, or apps, or... whatever. it's not simply the OS.

    going to apple is a good idea (should be more useful that just ranting). :D
  21. garysauctions macrumors member

    Dec 15, 2010

    It's human nature to resist change .... many of those early haters were doing just that.

    I on the other hand am not like that.

    Reverting to a known working solution is also a good idea.

    I for have never been one to complain about issues with a OS revision, until now.

    These issues make no sense .... the only one common element to all of the failures is OS X 10.11

    OSX 10.10 has been installed, shut down and rebooted 8 times over the last 4 hours in an effort to duplicate issues experienced with 10.11.

    Has been running for the last 90 minutes ...... without issue.

    In comparison the last clean install of 10.11 lasted ..... well, the problems began to manifest themselves on the first boot.

    I have yet to find a clear, definitive answer to those warnings about " Web Content Failure " I get under 10.11.

    But something is definitely trashing the HDD's under 10.11

    I am now running 10.10 on the internal HDD in the iMac ..... the very drive that first failed under 10.11.

    I am not a neophyte .... so Apple better have some real good explanations and reasons for their recommendations. I can hear it now " Your iMac is almost 5 years old ..... time to buy a new one! " :D
  22. fisherking macrumors 603


    Jul 16, 2010
    ny somewhere
    seriously, my point is: this isn't an issue EVERYONE is having, so it's not 'simply' that the OS is flawed. something is happening for you, and, glad you have a workaround (the earlier OS). and hope apple does in fact do more than tell you your mac is old!
  23. garysauctions macrumors member

    Dec 15, 2010
    Yeah, I do to.

    It seems as though something is trashing the file system on the boot drive.

    I suspected it might be an installed app, I did have MS Office 2011 installed on it ... but the symptoms began to appear on a fresh clean install with no apps installed other than the OS.

    Heck as I was trying a thread here with only the OS installed it was having " Web Content Failure " errors wiping out all I had typed.

    This is the first time since I made the switch to OS X that I have been plagued by problems ..... and I go back to the times before the switch to Intel CPU's.

    I loved my old G4 Powerbook and G5 Mac Pro ...... they are both still in the family and running fine.
  24. Alameda macrumors 6502a


    Jun 22, 2012
    This is an important question. The answer is both Yes and No.
    FileVault encrypts the contents of your hard drive. This is very important physical protection: Without FileVault, if someone gains physical access to your computer, they can either remove the SSD or they can boot from a USB stick and read everything from your SSD drive. It requires no skill at all. So File Vault is very important.

    But FileVault is not enough:
    1) If you choose a weak password, they can get right in anyway.
    2) If you choose to send a recovery key to Apple, the government can obtain the recovery key if they obtain a search warrant (not something I worry about).
    3) If a hacker gains control of your system over the Net, through malware, virus, etc, they can access your data, because the disk is unlocked while you're using it.
  25. MultiFinder17 macrumors 68000


    Jan 8, 2008
    Tampa, Florida
    Responding to the OP, I have El Capitan on my 2011 Air with 2GB RAM, and it runs just fine.

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