Upgrade to OS X El Capitan

OS X El Capitan remains available for Mac computers that can't upgrade to macOS Sierra, or that need to upgrade to El Capitan first.


Can your Mac use El Capitan?

OS X El Capitan requires one of the following Mac models and versions of OS X. It also requires at least 2GB of memory and 8.8GB of storage space.

  • iMac (Mid 2007 or newer)
  • MacBook (Late 2008 Aluminum, Early 2009, or newer)
  • MacBook Pro (Mid 2007 or newer)
  • MacBook Air (Late 2008 or newer)
  • Mac mini (Early 2009 or newer)
  • Mac Pro (Early 2008 or newer)
  • Xserve (Early 2009)
  • OS X Yosemite v10.10
  • OS X Mavericks v10.9
  • OS X Mountain Lion v10.8
  • OS X Lion v10.7
  • Mac OS X Snow Leopard v10.6.8


To find your model, memory, storage, and macOS version, choose About This Mac from the Apple menu ().

How to get El Capitan

Now that macOS Sierra is available, you should upgrade to Sierra instead of El Capitan. 

After downloading, the El Capitan installer opens automatically. Click Continue and follow the onscreen instructions.

Installer screen

If you quit the installer instead of clicking Continue, you can open it later from your Applications folder, Launchpad, or Spotlight. Look for a file named Install OS X El Capitan. During installation, your Mac might restart several times. It then performs some initial setup tasks in the background. While those tasks are underway, activities such as using Spotlight or Mail might not seem as fast as they were before.

Don't have the Mac App Store?

  • If you're using Leopard, upgrade to Snow Leopard.
  • If you're using Snow Leopard, check for software updates by choosing Software Update from the Apple menu. After installing all Snow Leopard updates, you should have the App Store app.
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