OS X El Capitan

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OS X 10.11 El Capitan
A version of the macOS operating system
OS X El Capitan logo.svg
OS X El Capitan screenshot.png
OS X El Capitan desktop
Developer Apple Inc.
OS family
Source model Closed source (with open source components)
Released to
manufacturing
September 30, 2015; 2 years ago (2015-09-30)
Latest release 10.11.6 (15G21013) / June 1, 2018; 48 days ago (2018-06-01)
Update method Mac App Store
Platforms x86-64
Kernel type Hybrid (XNU)
License APSL and Apple EULA
Preceded by OS X 10.10 Yosemite
Succeeded by macOS 10.12 Sierra
Official website OS X - Overview - Apple at the Wayback Machine (archived September 2, 2016)
Support status
Security updates and printer drivers only. Extended support to end this year, and iTunes support ends in next year.

OS X El Capitan (/ɛl ˌkæpɪˈtɑːn/ el-KAP-i-TAHN) (version 10.11) is the twelfth major release of OS X (now named macOS), Apple Inc.'s desktop and server operating system for Macintosh computers. It is the successor to OS X Yosemite and focuses mainly on performance, stability and security.[2] Following the Northern California landmark-based naming scheme introduced with OS X Mavericks, El Capitan was named after a rock formation in Yosemite National Park, signifying its goal to be a refined version of Yosemite. El Capitan is the final version to be released under the name OS X; its successor, Sierra, was announced as macOS Sierra. El Capitan received far superior reviews when compared to Yosemite.

The first beta of OS X El Capitan was released to developers shortly following the 2015 WWDC keynote on June 8, 2015.[3] The first public beta was made available on July 9, 2015.[4] There were multiple betas released after the keynote. OS X El Capitan was released to end users on September 30, 2015, as a free upgrade through the Mac App Store.[5]

System requirements[edit]

All Macintosh computers that can run Mountain Lion, Mavericks, or Yosemite can run El Capitan,[6] although not all of its features will work on older computers.[7] For example, Apple notes that the newly available Metal API is available on "all Macs since 2012".[8]

These computers can run El Capitan, provided they have at least 2GB of RAM:[7][9][10]

Of these computers, the following models were equipped with 1GB RAM as the standard option on the base model when they were shipped originally. They can only run OS X El Capitan if they have at least 2GB of RAM.

The following computers support features such as Handoff, Instant Hotspot, AirDrop between Mac computers and iOS devices, as well as the new Metal API:[11]

  • iMac: Late 2012 or newer
  • MacBook: Early 2015 or newer
  • MacBook Air: Mid 2012 or newer
  • MacBook Pro: Mid 2012 or newer
  • Mac Mini: Late 2012 or newer
  • Mac Pro: Late 2013

The upgrade varies in size depending upon which Apple Mac computer it is being installed on, in most scenarios it will require about 6 GB of disk space.[12]

Features[edit]

OS X El Capitan includes features to improve the security, performance, design and usability of OS X. Compared to OS X Yosemite, Apple says that opening PDFs is four times faster, app switching and viewing messages in Mail is twice as fast and launching apps is 40% faster.[13][14] The maximum amount of memory that could be allocated to the graphics processor has been increased from 1024 MB to 1536 MB on Macs with an Intel HD 4000 GPU.[15] OS X El Capitan supports Metal, Apple's graphics API introduced in iOS 8 to speed up performance in games and professional applications.[16] Apple's typeface San Francisco replaces Helvetica Neue as the system typeface.[17] OS X El Capitan also adopts LibreSSL in replacement of OpenSSL used in previous versions.[18]

Window management[edit]

An example of the split screen view in OS X El Capitan

OS X El Capitan introduces new window management features such as creating a full-screen split view by pressing the green button on left upper corner of the window or Control+Cmd+F keyboard shortcut, then snapping any supported other window to that full screen application. This feature is slightly similar to, although less extensive than, the snap-assist feature in Windows 7 (and later) and several Linux desktop environments, such as GNOME.[19] OS X El Capitan improves Mission Control to incorporate this feature across multiple spaces. It also enables users to spot the pointer more easily by enlarging it by shaking the mouse or swiping a finger back and forth on the trackpad.[20]

Applications[edit]

Messages and Mail[edit]

OS X El Capitan adds multi-touch gestures to applications like Mail and Messages that allow a user to delete or mark emails or conversations by swiping a finger on a multi-touch device, such as a trackpad. OS X also analyzes the contents of individual emails in Mail and uses the gathered information in other applications, such as Calendar. For example, an invitation in Mail can automatically be added as a Calendar event.

Maps[edit]

Apple Maps in El Capitan shows public transit information similar to Maps in iOS 9.[13] This feature was limited to a handful of cities upon launch: Baltimore, Berlin, Chicago, London, Los Angeles, Mexico City, New York City, Paris, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Shanghai, Toronto and Washington D.C.

Notes[edit]

The Notes application receives an overhaul, similar to Notes in iOS 9. Both applications have more powerful text-processing capabilities, such as to-do lists (like in the Reminders application), inline webpage previews, photos and videos, digital sketches, map locations and other documents and media types. Notes replaces traditional IMAP-based syncing with iCloud, which offers better end-to-end encryption and faster syncing.[21]

Safari[edit]

Safari in El Capitan lets users pin tabs for frequently accessed websites to the tab bar, similar to Firefox and Google Chrome. Users are able to quickly identify and mute tabs that play audio without having to search for individual tabs. Safari supports AirPlay video streaming to an Apple TV without the need to broadcast the entire webpage. Safari extensions are now hosted and signed by Apple as part of the updated Apple Developer program and they received native support for content blocking, allowing developers to block website components (such as advertisements) without JavaScript injection.[22] The app also allows the user to customize the font and background of the Reader mode.[23]

Spotlight[edit]

Spotlight is improved with more contextual information such as the weather, stocks, news and sports scores. It is also able to process queries in natural language. For example, users can type "Show me pictures that I took in Yosemite National Park in July 2014" and Spotlight will use that request to bring up the corresponding info.[24] The app can now be resized and moved across the screen.[25]

Photos[edit]

Photos introduced editing extensions which allows Photos to use editing tools from other apps.[26]

System Integrity Protection[edit]

OS X El Capitan has a new security feature called System Integrity Protection (SIP,[27] sometimes referred to as "rootless"[28][29]) that protects certain system processes, files and folders from being modified or tampered with by other processes even when executed by the root user or by a user with root privileges (sudo). Apple says that the root user can be a significant risk factor to the system's security, especially on systems with a single user account on which that user is also the administrator. System Integrity Protection is enabled by default, but can be disabled.[30][31]

Release history[edit]

Previous release Current release Beta
Version Build Date Darwin Notes Standalone download
10.11 15A284 September 30, 2015 15.0.0 Original Mac App Store release N/A
10.11.1 15B42 October 21, 2015 About the OS X El Capitan v10.11.1 Update OS X El Capitan 10.11.1 Update
10.11.2 15C50 December 8, 2015 15.2.0 About the OS X El Capitan v10.11.2 Update
10.11.3 15D21 January 19, 2016 15.3.0 About the OS X El Capitan v10.11.3 Update
10.11.4 15E65 March 21, 2016 15.4.0 About the OS X El Capitan v10.11.4 Update
10.11.5 15F34 May 16, 2016 15.5.0 About the OS X El Capitan v10.11.5 Update
10.11.6 15G31 July 18, 2016 15.6.0 About the OS X El Capitan v10.11.6 Update
15G1004 September 1, 2016 About the security content of Security Update 2016-001 El Capitan Security Update 2016-001 El Capitan
15G1108 October 24, 2016 About the security content of Security Update 2016-002 El Capitan Security Update 2016-002 El Capitan
15G1212 December 13, 2016 About the security content of Security Update 2016-003 El Capitan Security Update 2016-003 El Capitan
15G1217 January 17, 2017 About the security content of Security Update 2016-003 El Capitan
15G1421 March 27, 2017 About the security content of Security Update 2017-001 El Capitan Security Update 2017-001 El Capitan
15G1510 May 15, 2017 About the security content of Security Update 2017-002 El Capitan Security Update 2017-002 El Capitan
15G1611 July 19, 2017 About the security content of Security Update 2017-003 El Capitan Security Update 2017-003 El Capitan
15G17023 October 31, 2017 About the security content of Security Update 2017-004 El Capitan Security Update 2017-004 El Capitan
15G18013 December 6, 2017 About the security content of Security Update 2017-005 El Capitan Security Update 2017-005 El Capitan
15G19009 January 23, 2018 About the security content of Security Update 2018-001 El Capitan Security Update 2018-001 El Capitan
15G20015 March 29, 2018 About the security content of Security Update 2018-002 El Capitan Security Update 2018-002 El Capitan
15G21013 June 1, 2018 About the security content of Security Update 2018-003 El Capitan Security Update 2018-003 El Capitan
15G22010 July 9, 2018 About the security content of Security Update 2018-004 El Capitan Security Update 2018-004 El Capitan

Reception[edit]

Upon release, OS X El Capitan was met with positive reception from both users and critics, with praise mostly going towards the overall functionality of the new features and improved stability. Dieter Bohn of The Verge awarded the operating system a score of 8.5 out of 10;[32] while Jason Snell of Macworld was also positive, rating it 4.5 out of 5.[33]

Issues[edit]

After the 10.11.4 update, many users started reporting that their MacBooks were freezing, requiring a hard reboot.[34] This issue mostly affects Early 2015 MacBook Pro computers, although many others have reported freezes in other models.[35] Several users created videos in YouTube which showed the freezes.[36][37][38] Soon after this, Apple released the 10.11.5 update, which contained stability improvements. Apple later acknowledged these problems, recommending their users to update to the last point release.[39]

After the December 13, 2016 release of Security Update 2016-003, users reported problems with the WindowServer process becoming unresponsive, causing the GUI to freeze and sometimes necessitating a hard reboot to fix.[40] In response, on January 17, 2017, Apple released Security Update 2016-003 Supplemental (10.11.6) to fix "a kernel issue that may cause your Mac to occasionally become unresponsive" and at the same time released an updated version of Security Update 2016-003 which includes the fix released in the supplemental.[41] Users who have not previously installed Security Update 2016-003 are advised to install the updated version to reach build 15G1217, while users who have already installed the December 13, 2016 Security Update 2016-003 only need to install the supplemental update.

References[edit]

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  2. ^ Bonnie Cha. "Apple Announces OS X El Capitan, With Focus on Performance, Experience". Re/code. Archived from the original on June 9, 2015. 
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  4. ^ Andrew Cunningham (July 9, 2015). "The OS X El Capitan public beta arrives: Where to get it and how to install it". Ars Technica. Archived from the original on May 25, 2017. 
  5. ^ Benjamin Mayo (September 30, 2015). "Apple releases OS X El Capitan, featuring full-screen Split View, new Notes, revamped Spotlight Search, Safari 9 and more". 9to5Mac. Archived from the original on October 1, 2015. 
  6. ^ Keizer, Gregg (June 14, 2016). "Apple strikes older Macs from macOS Sierra list". Computerworld. Archived from the original on June 15, 2016. Retrieved June 14, 2016. 
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  15. ^ Intel HD Graphics 4000 GPU搭載のMacをOS X 10.11 El CapitanにアップデートするとVRAMの割り当て分が増加。 [Increase in VRAM allocation for Intel HD Graphics 4000 GPU in Mac OS X 10.11 El Capitan] (in Japanese). Appleちゃんねる. October 5, 2015. Archived from the original on November 25, 2015. 
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  25. ^ "10 tiny features I love about OS X El Capitan". iMore. Archived from the original on January 3, 2017. Retrieved January 2, 2017. 
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  28. ^ Cunningham, Andrew (June 17, 2015). "First look: OS X El Capitan brings a little Snow Leopard to Yosemite". Ars Technica. Archived from the original on June 19, 2015. Retrieved June 18, 2015. 
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  31. ^ "What's New in OS X". Mac Developer Library. Apple. June 8, 2015. At section OS X v10.11. Archived from the original on June 11, 2015. Retrieved June 18, 2015. 
  32. ^ Bohn, Dieter (September 29, 2015). "OS X El Capitan review: Everyone's an expert". The Verge. Archived from the original on October 1, 2015. Retrieved October 2, 2015. 
  33. ^ Snell, Jason (September 29, 2015). "OS X El Capitan review: Mac upgrade that's as solid as a rock". Macworld. Archived from the original on October 1, 2015. Retrieved October 2, 2015. 
  34. ^ Hardwick, Tim. "Mac Users Reporting Widespread System Freezes With OS X El Capitan 10.11.4 Update". Archived from the original on May 16, 2016. Retrieved May 14, 2016. 
  35. ^ "Macbook Pro 2015 with OSX El Capitan 10.11.4 system wide freeze". MacRumors Forums. Archived from the original on May 16, 2016. Retrieved May 14, 2016. 
  36. ^ WannaKnowMyName (2016-04-21), 10.11.4 freeze, retrieved 2016-05-14 
  37. ^ Patrick Bright (2016-04-27), Early 2015 Macbook Pro 10.11.4 Safari/System Freeze, retrieved 2016-05-14 
  38. ^ mey han (April 5, 2016), Macbook air early 2015 screen freeze problem with el capitan, archived from the original on April 8, 2017, retrieved May 14, 2016 
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  40. ^ "Avoid Security Update 2016-003 for OS X El Capitan 10.11.6 - Jamf Nation". www.jamf.com. Archived from the original on March 30, 2017. Retrieved March 30, 2017. 
  41. ^ "Apple fixes El Capitan kernel issue in supplemental security update". AppleInsider. Archived from the original on March 30, 2017. Retrieved March 30, 2017. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
OS X 10.10
OS X 10.11
2015
Succeeded by
macOS 10.12