Mac users in no big rush to adopt OS X El Capitan

“Adoption of Apple’s OS X 10.11, aka El Capitan, continues to lag behind its two predecessors, new data released this week showed,” Gregg Keizer reports for Computerworld.

“One measurement put El Capitan’s uptake at just 75% of its forerunner, 2014’s Yosemite, according to statistics from U.S.-based analytics vendor Net Application,” Keizer reports. “In the 153 days between its Sept. 30, 2015 launch and Feb. 29, 2016, El Capitan’s user share of all OS X editions grew to 47.9%, or approximately 0.31 percentage points per day. On a per-day basis — from its Oct. 16, 2014, debut until Feb. 28, 2015 — Yosemite accumulated an average of 0.4 percentage points of growth.”

Keizer reports, “Even 2013’s OS X 10.9, better known as Mavericks — and the first upgrade that Apple offered free of charge — was more quickly adopted on an average daily basis than El Capitan: During the 130 days between its release and the end of February 2014, Mavericks grew by 0.38 percentage points per day.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Much ado about nothing.

Keizer reported on Feb 2, 2016:

Four months after Apple launched El Capitan, the OS powered 44.8% of all Macs, according to numbers published Monday by U.S.-based analytics firm Net Applications. El Capitan’s 45% — of all OS X versions, not all personal computers — was a smaller share than predecessors like 2013’s Mavericks and 2014’s Yosemite accumulated by the end of their fourth full month. By that point, Mavericks had garnered 45.3% and Yosemite an even more impressive 51.4%.

The comparisons have some wiggle room, however. El Capitan debuted on the last day of September, while Mavericks and Yosemite were released on the 22nd and 16th of October, respectively. Using complete months as a measuring stick gave Mavericks a 14-day head start over El Capitan, and Yosemite an 8-day jump.

By discounting those leads, Mavericks was actually slightly behind El Capitan around the four-months-and-one-day mark. [Bold emphasis added – MDN Ed.]


  1. For years I used to rush to “buy” and install new OS updates Mavericks and now El Cap have began to educate me that it is probably better to slow down. Every time I upgrade something breaks. Right now on El Cap I’m having weird graphics driver issues. Also I have to pay to upgrade my Parallels every time I upgrade to Apple’s “free” OS Update. I think I’m going to sit the next upgrade out for a few months or maybe skip it completely hoping for more “stability” vs new wiz bang features.

    1. I used to skip a version of Parallels if I can. It all depends on whether you need the new functionality or whether Parallels will run on the new MacOS. Luckily now I do not need Parallels as I can VPN and remote desktop to my office PC using Mac software. It did bug me that Parallels would try and force you to upgrade with every new MacOS.

      1. I recently installed 10.6 on a Mac mini as entertainment server, and was amazed to see there was only 12 processes running after a fresh install. El Capitan has over 200 going from scratch.

  2. I’m still using Yosemite 10.10.5 as my main OS. El Capitan 10.11.3 is still full of bugs. Maybe when they release 10.11.4 or 10.11.5 it might be worth putting on my iMac, but not right now as it stands. And then Mac OS X 10.12.X (Fuji) will be out and I bet it will be flaky as all get out until the release 2 or three updates. Just IMO…..

    1. I’m curious – what are some bugs that El Capitan is full of? I’ve been using it for about 5 months and haven’t found any problems so far. It seems pretty stable from my usage.

  3. I would update except that El Capitan Disk Utility no longer supports RAID drives (which I use) and I am not expert enough to use Terminal commands. I have been waiting on an update to Disk Utility, as have others.

      1. It ain’t prettier. It’s harder to read, tagging sucks, and iLife and iWork apps are less user friendly than they were in 2009.

        The reason people don’t want to upgrade is because each version of OS X has been inferior since Snow Leopard.

      1. Fair enough, but that’s still a downgrade in capability. With iPhoto / Aperture now also killed off too, the OS X Ecosystem advantages are dying … it no longer is as compelling of a product.

        My current batch of Mac Pros may very well be the last…

    1. Yep…less functionality for those who want to manage their own systems. Apple seems to be catering to the masses more and more. Another example…wish there were an option to disable SIP instead of having to resort to terminal commands via the Recovery Tools. Each time there is a new beta version release, have to go through the same terminal steps. 🙁

    2. I have always used Pro products like Soft Raid and Onyx to run permission
      Fix. Apple is turning the osx into an iPad style OS, ugly icons, no scroll bars, opposite
      scrolling, no disk on desktop ect.
      The biggest turn off of 10.11 is slower boot times becuase of security systems like SIP’s
      This is evedent in the dissapearance of the cycle wait counter that was replaced with a progress bar, you can count cyles (harddrive usually takes up to 15 cycles and an SSD 3-4),
      its ironic and funny that the cycle icon reappears when you shut the machine down.
      Appart from the fact that old System/library/extentions can also stop your machine from booting
      Its only the nwer machines that seem to be faster with this osx.

  4. El Capitan is a better faster operating system then Yosemite. And the requirements are the same. I do have a beef with Disk Utility which lost so many functions. Please send feedback to Apple to let them know that removing functionality from Disk Utility is NOT okay.

    1. Um, no.

      El Cap has so damn many background processes and needless overhead, the only way to make it faster than prior versions is to manually turn off everything … and then you just have to deal with an oversized OS with reduced usability and all kinds of compatibility issues.

      Snow Leopard just worked. No version of OS X since has.

  5. Oh and there is no buying of any OS X upgrade at least to the latest version. They are all free upgrades. If you want to upgrade to anyone in between by special request Apple will make you pay around $20 and let you download a version.

    1. Or, if you’d previously used earlier versions of OS X, go to the Mac App store and re-download previous versions, at least as far back as OS X Lion on my MBP here.

  6. I thought there was a story saying el cap had a fast uptick in adopters?

    I’m running it with no issues, only real complaint is hoe Apple changed finder to not work as well with apps like extra finder etc.

    1. I’m with you as far as XtraFinder goes. I still have it on my work machine, running Yosemite, and I do miss it on El Capitan.
      I really like the dual panel thing with Tabs – very convenient.

      And I know there’s a workaround, but I really don’t want to compromise System Integrity Protection.

  7. A couple of things the author did not consider:
    1. There are a lot of older Macs still running well that may not qualify for the upgrade or users have decide to not upgrade because it will slow down the aging machines.
    2. A lot of users don’t even bother to upgrade the OS. They keep using the original version unless someone else upgrades it for them.

    1. You don’t get out into the real world much, do you?

      Longstanding and excellent publication MacWorld is owned by IDG.

      IDG also owns PC World and ComputerWorld and TechHive and GreenBot.

      Just because a publication doesn’t focus 100% on Apple doesn’t make it a bad company. Except in your myopic view, apparently.

  8. I used to upgrade immediately, but, more recently, every upgrade breaks something (e.g.: scanner, printer) costing me a lot of hours and hacking to fix.
    Additionally, this time I was put off by the issues with Office 2016 – a must use at work.

  9. “The free El Capitan upgrade can be obtained from Apple’s Mac App Store, and supports iMacs as old as mid-2007, MacBook Pro laptops from late 2007 on and MacBook Air laptops from late 2008 going forward.”

    Thanks from a proud 2012 Mac Mini user.

  10. The only functional problem I’ve had on multiple occasions is my sidebar favorites suddenly fail to show up in application open dialogs. The favorites would still appear in the Finder but when I go to a File/Open dialog the favorites would be gone. It’s very frustrating – -especially when you need to navigate to the iCloud folder. I found out I had to delete the file and restart. Then all is well.

  11. I’m going to keep saying “no thanks, maybe later” to full OS X updates until Apple starts taking OS X seriously again.

    Earlier this week, one of my internal hard drives failed to mount. So I opened Disk Utility, selected the drive, clicked the Repair button, then everything was good again. It occurred to me then that if I was using El Capitan, I would have had to figure out how to do the same thing using Unix commands in Terminal.

    Having the drive not “just work” was annoying enough, but then having to lookup and type a series of Terminal commands on top of that would have made it a real pain.

    1. ???

      Other than RAID tasks, I can still mount/unmount and repair volumes, etc. without resorting to the terminal.

      Or were you repairing a RAID volume and just failed to note that that was what you were doing?

      1. If think you’re right. I haven’t actually used El Capitan’s version of Disk Utility, I had only heard that most of its features were gutted. But upon further research, it looks like it would have been able to repair and mount my hard drive in that case.

        One excuse for not to update gone. El Capitan here we come?

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