OS X Yosemite review: 3 months later

“Three months ago Apple senior vice-president of software engineering, Craig Federighi, stood up on the Town Hall stage and said OS X Yosemite would be available that very day,” Peter Cohen reports for iMore.

“We posted our OS X Yosemite review as soon as it went live, based on almost four months of beta testing,” Cohen reports. “And we’ve had an additional 90 days to live with the final version.”

Cohen reports, “So, what have we grown to love and what has gotten on our nerves? It’s time to check in on Apple’s latest version of the Macintosh operating system, three months later.”

Read more in the full article here.


  1. The banner feature for me is SMS texts on iMessages. Everything else… meh. I don’t use handoff, like ever. I think I’ve answered the phone once from the computer, and it certainly was cool.

    On the downside both my home and my work Macs have locked up and required hard restarts between 2-3 times over the past few months. AT home we have four people logging in and logging out at different times and that system needs to be restarted at least every two weeks. It routinely drops connection to the AppleTV — like at least once a week — and both need to be restarted to reestablish the connection. And the work Mac doesn’t do AirDrop from iOS to Mac because it’s 4 years old, though of course there is no information on any of the AirDrop screens that tells you that, you have to go looking around the internet.

    SO on the whole? On the whole I guess I’d still install if I was on OS X 10.9, but I’m more dissatisfied with the update than I can ever remember being. (I think my first OS was Tiger, to give a sense of context.)

    1. Ditto…..same here the banner feature for me is the SMS texts and also calling and receiving calls on OS X! Also still love Weather, Packages and Stock Widgets that I check constantly through out the day.

      I am running on older Macs like Early 2009 MacBook Pro 17″ and MacPro 2009 and haven’t had much of a problem. Also helped beta test after the first day release. It seems slower at times, but I have an older machine too.

      Been happy here for the most part!

  2. While Messages/Continuity and Mail improvements have all been great, I have to say I generally don’t like the interface changes.

    First, Apple’s making it so there is more hassle customizing simple things like how/where windows open, icon vs. list view, etc … and there always seems to be a point where the system reverts things back to how the system wants it to look, and you’re back to trying to arrange things all over again.

    Second, key apps have been changed for the sake of it, or dropped altogether. iWorks’ interface, except for Keynote, sucks and there are lost features. they way things are done in iTunes12 has been changed a lot, but with no functional or performance benefit I can see. Appeture … ah hell.

    And I just don’t like the icons. Sorry, flat looks childish & unsophisticated. I’m coming to the realization I will never warm to them, iOS or OSX.

    1. Try the FTP server. Internally it works, but a Cisco firewall port forwarding fails from the outside.
      If I point the port forwarding to a Mac with OS X 10.8 running FTP, it works. That is the only bug I have run into on the server side but limited time spent with it.
      Most of my clients are running 10.7.5 Server and have uptime of 6 months to a year.

  3. Graphics drivers are still a problem. I had no issues under Mavericks on my trashcan Mac Pro. But under Yosemite, I still get some flashes and peculiar bits of minor blurring.

  4. -iTunes sync over USB to Lightening is a train wreck.
    -Mail is still out to lunch.
    -The new UI in iTunes sucks like a Dyson.
    -The Firewall routinely forgets that certain apps have been given permission (Eye TV asks me every fucking time it launches) despite having been approved.
    -The Finder is slower to open on my Mac Pro with 6 Internal (4 in the sled and 2 in the lower optical bay) and 4 External (ProBox) HDs. The pinwheel spins before the open Finder launches with apps in the Home Directory- something that did not happen on earlier versions of OS X.
    -OS X periodically renames the device a numbered version of it’s proper name- the sign of Apple’s half baked software development.
    -The phone thing is buggy and inconsistent. I just use the soft phone app (TruPhone for Mac- no longer distributed but still works) that uses OTT for VoIP that I have been using.
    -Still no Living Room interface since Front Row disappeared. Apple should put it in the App store and sell it at bare minimum.

    1. Most users have no problem whatsoever with their Macs running OS X Yosemite. What have you done to yours that you wrecked it? Try using your equipment as it was intended to be used (that is, if you are really a Mac user).

      1. First of all, before accusing someone of being a troll (if you really are a Mac user), why don’t you register with WordPress and come out of the closet.

        Next, since I have used every version of iTunes and every version of OS X I seriously doubt you are the repository of knowledge to lecture me on the proper use of iTunes.

        Why don’t you pick up your Droid and go back to your Xbox and stop trolling serious comments.

      2. @ wrong: that’s not what most polls indicate. Yosemite is more like Apple’s implementation of Windows 8 — flat, unintutive, ugly, and buggy, introducing features that no one asked for and not improving all the things that users have requested for years.

    2. Oddly, I was having the computer naming issue constantly on one iMac (which I primarily use via ethernet), but not on two other machines. I can’t definitively say if it did anything, but it did seem to coincide, but In Network I duplicated my location, and use that and I’ve not had it happen for 6 weeks. Still a massive bug.

    1. For the folks having problems with Yosemite…

      As a test, you should do a clean install of Yosemite on a separate volume (that can be erase), such as on an external hard drive. You may be able to use a USB flash drive, if it’s fast enough and has at least 16GB (32 or more is better). If your Mac has a built-in high-speed SD card reader, an SDXC card of sufficient capacity also works quite well as a test startup disk (that’s what I used for testing Yosemite beta on my Mac mini – a 64GB “Class 10” SDXC card). Set up the drive using Disk Utility’s Partition tab, so that its partition map scheme is GUID Partition Table (Options button) and format is Mac OS Extended (Journaled). Then, run the latest Yosemite installer and target that “test disk.” After startup, apply any Apple software updates using Mac App Store.

      If your Mac runs fine while starting up from that test disk, you should suspect a problem with your usual internal drive startup disk (not “Yosemite bugs”). Don’t wait until Apple “fixes the bugs” because you’ll be waiting forever. The fix may be to back up your user data, erase (reformat) your internal drive, do a clean install of Yosemite there, and restore your user data.

      If starting up from that test disk causes your Yosemite problems to recur, you may have hardware-related issues. Or it may actually be a problem with Yosemite, although that’s less likely because the vast majority of users are not having such issues.

      For Mac users who tested the Yosemite “public beta” and unwisely installed it over your primary day-to-day system, and then installed the official Yosemite release over that SAME system, THAT may be the cause of Yosemite-related problems. You should not have installed beta software over your working system, and Apple warns NOT to do that unless you are willing and able to erase that system.

      Also (for “public beta” participants), check the following. Go to System Preferences App Store pane. If there is a setting there that says, “Your computer is set to receive pre-release Software Update seeds” (with a Change button), your current system is still getting software updates that are meant for developers and ongoing beta-testers, which is currently for the pre-release version of 10.10.2 (you can also check by selecting About This Mac from the Apple menu). THAT may be the cause of Yosemite-related issues. The official latest release (meant for public consumption) is still 10.10.1. You should change that setting so you are NOT getting the pre-release updates.

      1. Sorry kenw1, but here it is April and Yosemite is still having major stability problems. This is after I replaced my 1yr old system HD with a brand spanking new SSD with a clean install, only to have exactly the same instability issues as I started having the day I installed Yosemite originally.

        The instability I’m talking about here:

        1 – Cannot directly start up from a cold start, as OS X automatically restarts several times before it is “happy” with a boot.

        2 – System Shutdown no longer reliable. Almost always it will now shutdown but not power off, then restart.

        3 – At least once a week I get a random reboot. This happens even if nothing else is going on or even has gone on, for example boot up, log in, get coffee, come back to a system booting up again.

        Yosemite is flat-out the most unstable version of OS X I’ve ever used, and I’ve been using OS X since 2001. I had no issues like the ones I describe above until the very day I installed Yosemite. For a couple weeks I thought maybe it was hardware related, but when I decided to replace the HD with an SSD I also thoroughly cleaned out the case along with reseating all the RAM and cards. By the way, half of the RAM is now brand spanking new as well because I suspected a RAM failure on one of the DIMM pairs.

        After all that and the exact same problems some experimentation showed that with Mavericks it all mysteriously works fine. Boot into Yosemite and the first system shutdown fails to power off.

        Problem is Yosemite. It’s just a bad OS. Apple needs to sit down and take the time to fix things instead of rolling out feature after feature after feature. Get back to a Snow Leopard level of stability and go from there.

  5. Dear Apple: Bring back ALL the title bars, especially in Safari. Dumping them was a STOOOOPID move, one of the stupidest I’ve ever seen you pull. DUH.

    Oh and thank you for ignoring all the other time’s I’ve chastised you for this DUH manoeuvre as a beta tester. 😛

  6. Are your kidding me? What are these fools smoking? And some idiot at Apple Care told me Apple listens to its customers? Really? Apparently Apple only reads comments that blow sunshine up their arse! My daughter has already dumped her MacAir and iPhone. After using Macs since the late 1980s, I may be right behind her. If Apple thinks Yosemite is a wonderful OS, this says a lot about the future of Apple software. iWorks is a bone fide disaster, mail just doesn’t work properly, and on and on. Numerous tech articles and complaints on blogs aren’t wrong. If the apologists for Apple keep telling us “their equipment is just honky-dory” and “they have no problems”, Apple will keep turning out crap software, the legacy that will be left behind by Tim Cook, Apple’s version of Steve Ballmer.

    1. I recently watched my brother use his windows computer. He had iCloud installed and was accessing everything from MS Outlook. I have to say it was superior in every way to what Apple is offering on OS X. I’m a huge Apple supporter but what I saw on Windows really showed me how far Apple has fallen.

  7. I think YOSEMITE sucks as an OS. I will probably change my mind once they get the damn bugs out of it. I wish I was running 10.8.x on my 27″ iMac with Retina Display. But then again, it probably wouldn’t work! And IMO we don’t need a new Mac/iOS every damn year. I say maybe every two years. Just my opinion though……

  8. My first Mac ran Panther and today I have two macs – a Mac Pro and a MacBook Air, both running Yosemite. The only new feature I use is the ability to send sms messages from my Mac. Handoff never worked and I turned off the annoying feature which made both my macs and my iPad ring when my phone rang… And keep ringing even after I answered the phone. Stupid idea and badly executed. I would go back to Mavericks if I could.

    I hate spotlight. It used to be great for finding files but I am back using finder which doesn’t clutter the results with stuff I don’t want. And Spotlight always seems to obscure what I am working on and the results disappear as soon as I click elsewhere.

    iTunes has been a mess for years and it has never been any use for classical music.

    The Mac Pro is a triumph of design over functionality. It looks great when there is nothing connected but mine is a mess of cables and attached devices and I am always accidentally disconnecting things when I have to rotate the Pro to find the elusive power button at the rear. It gets hot too and I have to sit it on a pile of coasters which makes it unstable.

    But it’s the instability which kills it for me. I have to reboot constantly because things just stop working. Right now the Pro is constantly rebooting itself and I can’t find out why because crash reporter doesn’t work. A glance at the error log suggests that many apps are using features which have been deprecated – even OneDrive which I had to turn to because icloud doesn’t support my older Adobe software or other non apple apps.

    I have had to subscribe to office365 because numbers and pages are missing key functionality.

    I gave up using my Apple TV because I can never reliably connect a wireless keyboard to it and the connection via my Apple AirPort Extreme is jerky so watching movies is horrible.

    Spaces doesn’t work properly either – my desktop background image always disappears so I am stuck with the pic of Yosemite. I never worked out what it was really for – there is only one desktop and since I use my desktop to keep things I use all the time these icons populate every one of the “spaces”. I have too many apps to use the launchpad so my dock is huge. Separate desktops with individual docks and desktops would be useful – otherwise its just annoying when apps suddenly disappear into one of the other spaces.

    In the battle of design versus function it is functionality which has become the poor brother.

    Today my Mac just doesn’t work.

  9. This review makes me wonder how much these people actually use their Mac for anything besides browsing the Internet.

    My clients are much more in agreement with “GregDav” and “SpeedPlay”.

    As of two weeks ago the most recent 400 app store reviews were over 60% negative.

    Many have told me Apple changed all the wrong interface elements with Yosemite. Here are the features they are wanting:

    A larger font option in the App Store.

    An optional larger font for the menu bar and pulldown menus.

    Ability to select the color of the dock and the side panels.

    The ability to choose which items of the interface are transparent and not transparent.

    The choice of how the maximize button works. Click the link to see an excellent suggestion by another Mac user.


    An option to request that an app open in full screen or (Maximized in the Microsoft Windows way.) Switchers really miss this feature!!

    The increase contrast option should only increase the contrast for the buttons it should not turn the sidebar and the dock into an ugly dreary gray punishment for selecting readability.

    These ideas are free of charge for Apple to use. If they so choose that will make a lot of people very happy.

  10. I always found it workable, though a bit glitchy (weird graphics artifacts in Safari were probably the worse of the quirks I encountered).

    Which was the whole point of signing up for the beta. I don’t have a new iMac, and wanted to see that the issues I encountered were at least considered for fixing.’

    I am glad I did because he “quirks” seem just about gone, and Yosemite just works in a most Mac-like fashion.

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