Updating MBP

AceC

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 10, 2013
91
1
So, I haven't updated my MBP in several years (I know, not good).. It's a 2010, and the software is 10.6.8.

As a result, a lot of software doesn't work on it, so I must update it now. When I go to the software update on Finder, it only comes up with the App Store update. What is the best way to update the software, and what should I do about it? Will updating it mess up my mac since it has been so long? Also, how long should it take? I'm just concerned that my mac won't update well since it is older, and I don't want to render it useless, though I probably should upgrade before too long anyway.

Thanks!
 
Last edited:

DeltaMac

macrumors G3
Jul 30, 2003
9,605
2,352
Delaware
If you choose to update - I would have some suggestions.
Decide if you need to upgrade the RAM installed (you can have up to 8GB)
There's really not a downside to adding more RAM (unless you are already at the max 8GB)
And, upgrading all the way to High Sierra from Snow Leopard can be done, but it will usually be a two step process. I would suggest an upgrade to Yosemite first, then upgrade that system to High Sierra.
Finally, and probably should be your first step: if the drive is the original HDD (spinning disk drive), then your best upgrade will be replacing that hard drive with a new SSD (solid state drive). Prices for those continue to drop - you can find 500GB drives every day for less than 70 dollars (US), and the result will be a very noticeable speedup of your MBPro.
(Main reason to change to SSD is that the newer macOS systems are not well optimized for the old hard drives
 

BLUEDOG314

macrumors 6502
Dec 12, 2015
349
86
Like mentioned above going 8GB of ram and a SSD would make the machine a lot more usable. Even if you don't want to do all that, a clean install is probably the way to go. Besides, going from 10.6 to potentially 10.13, I would guess most apps may not work optimally anymore.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors P6
Feb 20, 2009
17,444
5,659
I'd put a cheap SSD into it (no larger than 500gb), and upgrade the OS to Low Sierra (10.12).

When the time comes that you get a new computer, just take out the SSD and "take it with you".

But don't spend money on RAM. It's just getting a bit "too old".
 

Painter2002

macrumors 65816
May 9, 2017
1,083
759
Austin, TX
I agree with what others have posted, without knowing the specs on your computer I’d say upgrade to an SSD and 8GB of RAM if you haven’t already, those are both easy and affordable upgrades on that model year.

As for your questions on the software update itself, if you do the above mentioned upgrades it won’t take long, maybe an hour or two tops for a full fresh reintall of MacOS to the most recent version your machine supports (which I believe is High Sierra). If you have less RAM and an older HDD, it might take longer but not that much, and it certainly won’t break you machine or cause any issues.
 

AceC

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 10, 2013
91
1
If you choose to update - I would have some suggestions.
Decide if you need to upgrade the RAM installed (you can have up to 8GB)
There's really not a downside to adding more RAM (unless you are already at the max 8GB)
And, upgrading all the way to High Sierra from Snow Leopard can be done, but it will usually be a two step process. I would suggest an upgrade to Yosemite first, then upgrade that system to High Sierra.
Finally, and probably should be your first step: if the drive is the original HDD (spinning disk drive), then your best upgrade will be replacing that hard drive with a new SSD (solid state drive). Prices for those continue to drop - you can find 500GB drives every day for less than 70 dollars (US), and the result will be a very noticeable speedup of your MBPro.
(Main reason to change to SSD is that the newer macOS systems are not well optimized for the old hard drives
How exactly do you go about replacing the drive and doing all of that? Or would I have to take it somewhere and have someone do it? It's probably apparent, but I am a bit of a novice. I believe it has 4 GB of ram, however.

Like mentioned above going 8GB of ram and a SSD would make the machine a lot more usable. Even if you don't want to do all that, a clean install is probably the way to go. Besides, going from 10.6 to potentially 10.13, I would guess most apps may not work optimally anymore.
By "clean install," do you mean just simply updating the software? Would a clean install delete everything on the computer?

I agree with what others have posted, without knowing the specs on your computer I’d say upgrade to an SSD and 8GB of RAM if you haven’t already, those are both easy and affordable upgrades on that model year.

As for your questions on the software update itself, if you do the above mentioned upgrades it won’t take long, maybe an hour or two tops for a full fresh reintall of MacOS to the most recent version your machine supports (which I believe is High Sierra). If you have less RAM and an older HDD, it might take longer but not that much, and it certainly won’t break you machine or cause any issues.
Due to my inexperience, I may end up having to try it without upgrading my SSD or RAM.. I will have to investigate further. Thanks though for your reply, and thanks to all of you for your help.
 

DeltaMac

macrumors G3
Jul 30, 2003
9,605
2,352
Delaware
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