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How to install the macOS Catalina public beta

The next version of macOS is called Catalina and today, its first public beta was released. This means that anyone with a Mac can try out the beta version of the upcoming OS. An Apple Developer account is not needed. Here’s how you can install the macOS Catalina public beta.

Install macOS Catalina public beta

If you’re not following this on your Mac, switch over to it before you proceed. Also, it’s a good idea to back up your files first, just in case. This is beta software and things can go wrong.

Visit this page, and sign in with the Apple ID you use on your Mac.

Once you’re signed in, you will have to enroll your Mac into the public beta program. Click the link to proceed.

On the next page, click the ‘Download the macOS Public Beta Access Utility’ button and it will download a package.

Look for it in the Downloads folder, and install it. The package will advise you to back up your Mac if it doesn’t detect a Time Machine back up. It will also tell you that a Feedback Assistant app will be installed on your Mac. There is no way to opt out of installing this app.

The package will install in a few seconds and the Feedback Assistant app will launch. Switch to it first and accept the on-screen agreement. In the background, the Software Update will run and check for an update but if you haven’t accepted the agreement on the Feedback Assistant app, it will fail.

Once you have the Feedback Assistant app set up, check for a software update again the same way that you update macOS.

Once the update has been detected, you can download and install it. Again, it will install like any other macOS update.

The macOS Catalina public beta is fresh right now. Everyone is trying to access it and the website sometimes tells you it’s being updated. You will eventually manage to get the public beta access utility but downloading the Catalina beta through macOS will be slow. It’s a good idea to wait a day or two to get the update.

The update isn’t permanent i.e., you can downgrade back to the stable version of macOS Mojave. Once you’re on the beta version of Catalina, you will continue to get the other public betas that are released. The betas are normally one version behind the developer builds but you will nevertheless get every single beta released leading up to the final, stable release, and all subsequent public betas for it.

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