Are there any reasons why I should upgrade from El Capitan to Sierra?

The Internet forums are full of unhappy users who upgraded to Sierra, and I am sticking with El Cap for the moment.
I have a very limited understanding of OSX, and would appreciate having the insight from forum users.
Apologies to Peter for a question which is peripheral to KBM
thanks in advance


My personal policy for upgrades is to “wait and see”. :smile:

This means that if I do not have a compelling reason to upgrade, especially a major OS upgrade, then I wait some time (weeks to months) before I even consider making the upgrade, all the while looking for user reports on the upgrade.

Of particular interest to me are the main apps I often use. Before I upgrade I make sure there are no issues with those apps that would materially impact my workflow.

I’m still running macOS El Captian, and expect to be doing so for at least 3-6 months. I waited almost a year before I upgraded from Yosemite to El Capitan.

While macOS Sierra has some cool new features, I do not see a compelling reason to upgrade at this time.


great advice, thanks

No (serious) problems with Sierra, so far. The Finder gets a bit laggy sometimes, I’m still investigating why…

After the public release of an OS usually I wait 2 or 3 days, to see if there are any reports of problems with apps that are crucial for me. But, normally, the heavy things get sorted out during the beta.

The Internet forums are full of unhappy users who upgraded to Sierra

Well, that’s always the same story: Users who have problems are, of course, posting their problems, and from the majority of users who don’t have problems you won’t see many posts.

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a selection bias as they say in statistics. A very good point. thank you

I wish I had never updated to Sierra. I used an external keyboard to control my Keyboard Maestro macros via the USB Device Trigger. This does not work anymore. I’m searching the internet far and wide for a solution. If you can live without Siri on your Mac, do not update to Sierra.

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there is a french expression: the misfortunes of some (your frustrations with Sierra) makes for the opportunities of others (I will avoid Sierra).
sorry to hear that you have so much trouble, and thank you for your advice, which I will follow.

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I’m sorry that you are experiencing problems with Sierra as it relates to Keyboard Maestro, but this is a unique situation and may not be an issue with Sierra, but an issue with Keyboard Maestro not being updated to fully integrate with Sierra.

As far as Ronald’s original question about Sierra I have to say that I personally have not upgraded to it as of yet, but that is because I currently us an older piece of software that ahs not been upgraded to work with Sierra and I don’t know if it will be so I have to decide if I want to find a replacement for that software or stay with El Capitan.
For the most part I agree with JMichaelTX.

I do tech support for Apple and I have to say that this was by far one of the smoothest product releases that we have done.
No major problems, a couple of small issues that have already been corrected with updates. 10.12.1 was just released last week.

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Wait 2 or 3 days? Why not just add your name to the Beta test program? It’s awesome because not only do you get to complain about all of the software problems but you get really good at repeating them. I have a feeling Microsoft was on it for several months with Office after El Capitan was released. But to be fair, that’s only because there was a cue.

If there is no compelling reason to charge in, I would be thankful for everyone else that did.

I agree, I wouldn’t do this again, that is, not with the Mac I use for work. I’ve done it once: with El Capitan I jumped the beta two months before release, because I had a Yosemite problem and expected a cure :wink:. The result was that I had to do a clean install and restore my data from backup, because the installer made my disk unbootable, and later an important Adobe program refused to launch.

Well, nothing disastrous, but it took a day of work. If you wait until release it’s unlikely that you see problems like that. Usually at release date the GM already has been out for a week or more. The “2 or 3 days” I mentioned are an additional safety buffer.

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I notice that you mentioned Adobe. I just learned (the hard way) that pdf annotations using Adobe are proprietary, and not visible with Preview or PDF Expert for example. I was stunned.

Hmm? I see them in Preview. They look a bit different, but they are there. Or do mean you have seen them with El Capitan and you don’t see them with Sierra?

I annotated a series of important documents with Adobe Acrobat a few months ago. Since then, I have dropped Adobe - although I still have a copy - because I find PDF Expert so much much better and much faster.
Readdle, the company behind PDF Expert is also behind the iPad version of PDF Expert, which is outstanding.
When I recently wanted to further edit the documents in PDF Expert, none of the annotations were visible. By not visible, I mean nothing, nada blank, no suggestion that there were ever any annotations. Not a blank page: absent annotations. I contacted PDF Expert to tell them that there is a bug in their app. They answered that Adobe’s annotations are proprietary and not visible in many other PDF Editors. The suggested I looked at the documents in Preview and that I would not see the annotations, and they were right.
So Adobe - for my uses - is an outrageously expensive sloth, and now I am stuck at least keeping a license to be able to access past annotations.

As said, they are there in Preview, and even in Skim (after converting). Maybe you speak of some kind of specific annotations?

I find PDF Expert so much much better and much faster.

I don’t like Acrobat either, but unfortunately it is still indispensable:

  • for properly saving in different PDF standards (PDF/X, PDF/A, etc.)
  • for proper optimizing (some PDF creators, for example LuaTeX, write tons of uncompressed, app-private data to the PDF, which I only can get rid of by optimizing in Acrobat)
  • Proper editing of content
  • forms, especially complicated ones with JavaScript
  • preflight

I shortly tried PDF Expert when it came out for OS X, and was impressed by its feature-poorness. Probably this has changed in the meantime.

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you are right on both counts:

  • PDF expert version 2, not 1
  • annotations: I scanned a form, created fields, and completed them. Those annotations (completed fields) are not visible with Preview of PDF Expert, but they are visible with Skim (I just tested).

OK, I understood “annotations” as ‘comments’. But even the contents of fields I can see in Preview. So I guess, I’m still not getting what you mean.

They answered that Adobe’s annotations are proprietary and not visible in many other PDF Editors

I always believed it was the other way round: that many “third-party” apps don’t comply with PDF standards. After all, Adobe is the “father” of PDF. But of course, this doesn’t rule out that they use non-standard stuff.

I have the impression we’re going slightly off-topic :wink:

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Thank you for your honest response, much appreciated!

I use Photos extensively and it was improved quite a bit in Sierra. They fixed five or six bugs in the Info window, and improved Faces (now called People). None of the other improvements mattered to me, but I haven’t hit any significant problems, so I’m glad I upgraded.