When is Apple going to ship Macs with Catalina?

Hello all: I have read some info on incompatibility or usage with older apps with Catalina. 32 bit vs 64 bit? I am not quite clear on this topic.
I need to buy a new iMac this year.
I don’t want Catalina installed on a new mac because I do use old apps. Does anyone know when Apple is going to have their new macs installed with Catalina?
Thank you

All new Macs will come with Catalina shortly after it’s released, probably between mid-September and the end of October at the latest.

In short, old 32-bit apps won’t launch in Catalina. Scan your drive with Go64 to see which will need to be updated.


Hi Adam: Bummer! Thank you. Will there be any issues to reformat drive to Mojave?

I’m not sure what you mean. Could you mean APFS instead of Mojave? Since Mojave already converts all drives to APFS when you upgrade from older versions of macOS, I presume Catalina will do the same.

Hi Adam: I am not sure, LOL. I was talking about reformatting the hard drive to Mojave IF I buy a new iMac with Catalina. I have some apps that I use that cannot be upgraded. For example, have you heard of iData Pro? It’s such a great floating app that I have handy to add quick info like serial numbers of programs that I install, dates, numbers, etc.

As long as it’s a Mac that originally shipped with Mojave or below, it will simply require that you have a Mojave installer on a bootable external drive, such as a USB thumb drive. You should prepare that now as may be difficult or impossible to do so after Catalina is released.

Thanks Al. I am going to go to the Apple Store and see if the mgr. knows anything tentative shipping Catalina iMacs.

The simplest solution is to just buy the mac you want now if possible. Then you won’t have any fuss, and you’ll have the use of the newer, hopefully niftier, hardware sooner.

If he does, I’m confident that he won’t be able to share that with you, but will certainly help you to by that new Mac now.

Thank you. Silly me. I wanted to wait til my iMac died but it keeps on going. Darn!

Ah! Yes, as Al said, you’ll be able to do that only if the Mac originally shipped with Mojave or earlier. Personally, I wouldn’t recommend it. The writing has been on the wall for 32-bit apps for years, and you’ll need to move on eventually. The longer you wait, the harder it will be.

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Buy it now!

I didn’t want to go beyond Sierra because of video recording app problems. I now have 4 Macs that can run Sierra and my video software. The fifth with High Sierra is only used for playback and streaming. They will die eventually. That’s the way it goes.

Yes, I am working on on finding alternate apps but it is not easy.

Boo! Hoo! I am going to cry. Just kidding. Thank you. John says but it now! Best thing to do. Bite the bullet and CHARGE!

John Burt wrote: “I didn’t want to go beyond Sierra”

I’ve settled on Sierra as my long term primary system too. I have Filemaker 12, Aperture, and a bunch more software that works well enough through Sierra, but gets wonky or fails outright on later systems. Some is too expensive to upgrade/replace, some has no upgrade/replacement available. I also have a bunch of mostly older computers, and rely heavily on monolithic images to swap things around occasionally; that breaks completely on High Sierra and above.

I’ll eventually get a new mini for running a recent system, partly for the better security and partly so I can run current versions of software such as final cut when warranted. But it will basically be divorced from my other stuff. Maybe years from now I’ll have enough new software that whatever system is current at the time will become the primary one but it’s likely to be a long while.

Golden mac versions over the years: 6.3, 7.5, 9.2, 10.4 ppc (tiger + classic), 10.6 (snow leopard), 10.11/10.12 (el cap/sierra, depending on software needs). I still need to get 6.3 and 7.5 set up. I have the hardware but no space to use it.

As others have said, eventually you will need to migrate to software that can run on a current version of Mac OS (and I feel your pain, I need to move away from Aperture :cry:). When you get to that point, I can recommend Tap Forms as an excellent database app.


Reading these stories I wonder if long-term many Mac users will employ some kind of virtualization. Of course we cannot resist the future, but once you have something that works for you, you don’t want to give it up. You want that to work despite you having stepped off into that future. Maybe running FMPro in a virtualized HS is viable even in a post-Catalina world.

Jolin Warren wrote: “As others have said, eventually you will need to migrate to software that can run on a current version of Mac OS”

Nope. I’ll probably need to run a new system at some point to be able to back up new iThings and for improved browsing security, but I certainly don’t need to use it for day to day stuff. Even if my newest mac (last summer’s 27" iMac) breaks, used replacements are pretty easy to come by.

Moving to new software isn’t going to happen except in rare cases. I’ve hit the age where time goes flitting by at ever increasing speed, which means there’s much less usable time in a day than there used to be. I’m not about to waste that in learning how to use new software, then converting decades of old stuff to it. Too much like what I do for work. I’d much rather be hunting insects and staring into microscopes. Or playing around with my ‘new’ 12" powerbook G4, which is a delight running Tiger and Classic. (Fool’s Errand is as nice as I remembered, and Appleworks is such a relief after fighting with Numbers.)

Aperture is a little annoying because it uses the system raw support. I got an Olympus TG-6 a few weeks ago which isn’t supported on Sierra, but importing raw+jpeg then round tripping to Affinity when the jpegs aren’t good enough works out pretty well. If I get the Oly E-M5iii next spring, I may consider Capture One if it still runs on Sierra, otherwise the round tripping thing should do.

It might be worth noting that I’m used to being spread out over multiple mostly old machines, some via screen sharing, some in virtual systems, a couple with their own displays. Whenever I think of trying to have everything all on one computer, even with a few virtual systems, I get claustrophobic. So maybe I’m not the best role model…

True, in theory, it is possible to maintain old software as you say. It just depends on what you consider ‘work’ and ‘hassle’. For me, the effort of maintaining multiple systems and coming up with workarounds (for e.g. new cameras, new websites on old browsers) is far more work and hassle than I have time for. It’s the kind of thing I used to enjoy, tinkering with systems and getting everything working just so. But these days I don’t have the time, and find it simpler to go with the flow as much as I can (though certainly not always). It’s true that it does require occasionally learning new things. But each to their own, and I can certainly understand the attraction of some of the older systems and software (I mourned AppleWorks for several years!)

It all depends on what tasks are being performed and whether the secondary vendors have caught up with Apple’s changes.

My hobby is recording broadcast, cable, and streamed video. Watching it when and how I feel like it. Finally editing and archiving the good stuff I want to watch again. It tends to take the vendors a year or three to catch up - if they are going to at all.

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Jolin Warren wrote: “But these days I don’t have the time, and find it simpler to go with the flow”

Ah, but flow always goes downhill unless a very good pump is involved. I kind of think that Apple’s main pumps are aimed the wrong way, sending the flow ever faster towards rougher rapids than there are already, and maybe a high waterfall. Prevention of third party repairs and hardware upgrades; the inscrutability of how apple IDs and device authorizations work (and too often don’t); advertising at us on our own hardware, including notification ads if you get the apple card and want to be notified of transactions; icloud snatching my data without my permission…

Longish term (unless something changes at apple, which doesn’t seem likely), for me the easy decision is between moving to linux and their sparse, wretched applications, or staying on old macs and old mac systems with many lovely apps and my many decades of sometimes near-impossible to convert data. Any hardware/system fiddling to keep old stuff going and somewhat merged is a mere bagatelle in comparison with the work of floating along, but paddling sideways frantically to grab at chunks of my past life before they vanish. And as a byproduct, I’ve been having fun with Strategic Conquest and Berkeley LOGO again! Can Hypercard be far behind?