Sign up for macOS High Sierra beta

Karen Haslam ex­plains how to get your hands on Ap­ple’s beta

Macworld - - Contents -

The fi­nal re­lease of macOS 10.13 High Sierra will be avail­able in Septem­ber or Oc­to­ber, but the first de­vel­oper beta is avail­able now.

It’s not just de­vel­op­ers who get a look in, though. Back at WWDC 2015 Ap­ple an­nounced it would al­low mem­bers of the public to test the up­com­ing OS as part of a new, free beta pro­gram. This will let you down­load and run be­tas of the lat­est ver­sion of op­er­at­ing sys­tem. Those who reg­is­ter for the Beta Seed Pro­gram can down­load the soft­ware and of­fer

feed­back to help Ap­ple per­fect the up­date be­fore it’s re­leased to the public in the au­tumn. If you want to be a Public beta tester, you can sign up to join the Ap­ple Beta Soft­ware Pro­gram at­fuwnz.


Ap­ple sug­gests you should run the pre-re­lease soft­ware on a ded­i­cated Mac, not your main ma­chine. There’s also the mat­ter of pri­vacy. By agree­ing to test the macOS beta soft­ware you’re es­sen­tially giv­ing Ap­ple per­mis­sion to col­lect di­ag­nos­tic, tech­ni­cal and us­age data from you, un­less you go through the process of opt­ing out.

What does be­ing a beta tester in­volve?

The pur­pose of the beta pro­gram is to pro­vide Ap­ple with feed­back. If you ex­pe­ri­ence bugs or other is­sues, re­port them to Ap­ple us­ing the Feed­back As­sis­tant app. And don’t just say some­thing crashed, ex­plain ex­actly what you were do­ing when the crash hap­pened and try and re­pro­duce the crash to see if you can iden­tify what steps lead to it. Don’t just tell Ap­ple that you don’t like the ‘flat’ look of the user in­ter­face. Your pur­pose as a beta tester is to pro­vide feed­back on bugs, not try and as­sume Jony Ive’s role.

De­vel­op­ers Sign up for the Beta Seed pro­gram

Reg­is­tered Ap­ple De­vel­op­ers are able to down­load pre-re­lease ver­sions of most of Ap­ple’s soft­ware too, but it costs £99 per year to reg­is­ter as a de­vel­oper. To reg­is­ter, go to the Ap­ple De­vel­oper Pro­gram

reg­is­tra­tion page ( and click En­rol. Reg­is­ter­ing as an Ap­ple de­vel­oper will give you ac­cess to sup­port ma­te­ri­als, and en­able you to reg­is­ter Macs and iOS de­vices with Ap­ple, so you can use them to run your soft­ware.

You can sign in with your own Ap­ple ID (rec­om­mended if you’re a sin­gle de­vel­oper), or you can cre­ate an Ap­ple ID just for the de­vel­oper ac­count (rec­om­mended if you are de­vel­op­ing for a com­pany).

You don’t have to pay Ap­ple to reg­is­ter as a de­vel­oper. You can sign up and gain ac­cess to all the de­vel­oper tools. The ba­sic reg­is­tra­tion is fine for de­vel­op­ing and test­ing an app, although you will need to sign up with Ap­ple for mem­ber­ship (£69 per year) if you want to down­load the de­vel­oper pre­views.

Down­load and in­stall the beta

• Be­fore you do any­thing else, back up your Mac • Go to de­vel­oper.ap­ • Click on De­velop • Click on Down­loads • Log in to your De­vel­oper ac­count • Click the Down­load but­ton be­side macOS 10.13 • You will find macOS High Sierra De­vel­oper Beta Ac­cess Util­ity – macOSSier­raDevel­op­erBe­taAc­cessUtil­ity.pkg – in your Down­loads folder. Dou­ble-click it and the in­staller will run. You need this be­fore you can ac­cess the de­vel­oper be­tas on the Mac App Store • The Mac App Store should au­to­mat­i­cally open in the Up­dates tab. If it doesn’t, open the Mac App Store and go to Up­dates • Click on Up­date be­side the de­vel­oper beta soft­ware ver­sion and it will down­load and in­stall • Fi­nally your Mac will restart • The soft­ware has down­loaded but you still need to in­stall it • Click Con­tinue • Agree to the Terms and Con­di­tions • Click In­stall • The wizard will help you in­stall the beta soft­ware • Once it’s fin­ished in­stalling, click on Con­tinue • Sign in with your Ap­ple ID and pass­word

Public Sign up for the Beta Seed pro­gram

If you are a mem­ber of the public you will have to wait a lit­tle longer to get your hands on the first beta, as

Ap­ple will make a public macOS High Sierra beta avail­able later this sum­mer.

In the mean­time, sign up. First, you’ll need to go to the macOS Beta Seed Pro­gram web­site ( pkm­buxz). You must be aged 18 or older with a valid Ap­ple ID, and you’ll also need to be will­ing to ac­cept the Con­fi­den­tial­ity Agree­ment, which means you agree not to share in­for­ma­tion or screen­shots of the up­date.

By click­ing Join Now and then Get Started, you’ll be taken to the Sign In page. If you don’t al­ready have an Ap­ple ID, you can cre­ate one by click­ing ‘cre­ate one now’ in the grey box on the left. If you do have one, you can go ahead and sign in us­ing the pass­word you nor­mally use for your iTunes and other Ap­ple ser­vices.

You’ll then be taken to the macOS Beta Seed and Con­fi­den­tial­ity Agree­ment. You’ll need to read this (you can view it as a PDF if you pre­fer by click­ing the link be­neath the scroll link) and then click ac­cept.

Once you are reg­is­tered for the Ap­ple Beta Soft­ware Pro­gram you will need to en­rol your Mac here in order to be able to get the up­dates from the Mac App Store. You will have to re-en­rol your Mac if you had pre­vi­ously been a tester.

You will find a down­load link and you re­demp­tion code on that page. Click on the link and en­ter your code to down­load the lat­est beta.

Down­load and in­stall the beta

For the public beta, the in­stal­la­tion process will be sim­i­lar to that above. You have to in­stall the Beta Ac­cess app in order to ac­cess fu­ture beta ver­sions, once you have it you will see if any up­dates are avail­able when you open the Mac App Store.

Any up­dates that are part of the macOS Beta Seed Pro­gram will be la­belled ‘Pre-re­lease’. You can click up­date to in­stall those pre-re­lease ver­sions of soft­ware. You just need to click Up­date to in­stall the most cur­rent ver­sion of the macOS Public Beta.

With each new re­lease, the lat­est macOS Public Beta will au­to­mat­i­cally ap­pear in the Mac App Store and you’ll re­ceive a No­ti­fi­ca­tion when it is avail­able.

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