OS X El Capitan
|A version of the macOS operating system|
OS X El Capitan desktop
|Source model||Closed source (with open source components)|
|Released to |
|September 30, 2015|
|Latest release||10.11.6 (15G21013) / June 1, 2018|
|Update method||Mac App Store|
|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)|
|Security updates and printer drivers only. Extended support to end this year, and iTunes support ends in next year.|
|Part of a series on|
OS X El Capitan (/
The first beta of OS X El Capitan was released to developers shortly following the 2015 WWDC keynote on June 8, 2015. The first public beta was made available on July 9, 2015. 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.
All Macintosh computers that can run Mountain Lion, Mavericks, or Yosemite can run El Capitan, although not all of its features will work on older computers. For example, Apple notes that the newly available Metal API is available on "all Macs since 2012".
- iMac: Mid 2007 or newer
- Aluminum MacBook: Late 2008
- MacBook White/Black: Early 2009 or newer
- MacBook (12-inch): All
- MacBook Air: Late 2008 or newer
- MacBook Pro: 13-inch: Mid 2009 or newer
- MacBook Pro: 15-inch: Mid 2007 or newer
- MacBook Pro: 17-inch: Mid 2007 or newer, Late 2007 or newer
- Mac Mini: Early 2009 or newer
- Mac Pro: Early 2008 or newer
- Xserve: Early 2009
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.
- 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.
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. 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. OS X El Capitan supports Metal, Apple's graphics API introduced in iOS 8 to speed up performance in games and professional applications. Apple's typeface San Francisco replaces Helvetica Neue as the system typeface. OS X El Capitan also adopts LibreSSL in replacement of OpenSSL used in previous versions.
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. 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.
Messages and Mail
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.
Apple Maps in El Capitan shows public transit information similar to Maps in iOS 9. 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.
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.
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. The app can now be resized and moved across the screen.
System Integrity Protection
OS X El Capitan has a new security feature called System Integrity Protection (SIP, sometimes referred to as "rootless") 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.
|Previous release||Current release||Beta|
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (October 2015)
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; while Jason Snell of Macworld was also positive, rating it 4.5 out of 5.
After the 10.11.4 update, many users started reporting that their MacBooks were freezing, requiring a hard reboot. This issue mostly affects Early 2015 MacBook Pro computers, although many others have reported freezes in other models. Several users created videos in YouTube which showed the freezes. 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.
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. 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. 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.
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OS X 10.11 ships with LibreSSL.
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- 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.
- 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.
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- WannaKnowMyName (2016-04-21), 10.11.4 freeze, retrieved 2016-05-14
- Patrick Bright (2016-04-27), Early 2015 Macbook Pro 10.11.4 Safari/System Freeze, retrieved 2016-05-14
- 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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- "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.
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OS X 10.10
| OS X 10.11