How to download and install Apple’s macOS 12 Monterey

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Now that Apple’s Unleashed event is over, we’ve finally got more details on how to download and install macOS 12 Monterey. The operating system will be released as a free update on October 25th and you won’t have to wait long to try it out.

When macOS 12 Monterey was announced during the WWDC 2021 keynote in June, it turned out that it wasn’t as big an update as its predecessor macOS 11 Big Sur, but that didn’t mean the new operating system didn’t have much to update.

There has been a lot of interest in downloading macOS 12 Monterey yourself in public beta, and now that macOS 12 Monterey is getting its full version, you can download the much more stable version of Apple’s latest operating system on compatible computers without worrying about a whole host of bugs having to worry about detecting and reporting that your MacBook and Mac devices may crash.

Of course, this can still happen in the first few weeks after the release of macOS 12 Monterey. So if stability is your priority, you should wait a few weeks after launching for more bug fixes to roll out.

Unlike the earlier macOS 12 Monterey Developer Preview that required you to enroll in the Apple Developer Program (which costs $ 99, about $ 69, $ 140), the public beta for macOS 12 Monterey was just like that the full version completely free release of the operating system.

Can your Mac run macOS 12 Monterey?

Before you start downloading macOS 12 Monterey, make sure your Mac can run the software. These are the Macs you can install macOS 12 Monterey on:

  • iMac in late 2015 and later
  • iMac Pro 2017 and above
  • MacBook Air in early 2015 and later
  • MacBook Pro in early 2015 and later
  • Mac Pro in late 2013 and later
  • Mac mini in late 2014 and later
  • MacBook early 2016 and later

Shortcuts in macOS 12 Monterey

(Image credit: Apple)

Back up your Mac before upgrading to macOS 12 Monterey

If you are upgrading your operating system, even if it is a full version rather than a beta version, we strongly recommend backing up the files on your Mac so that you can quickly restore your computer to its previous operating state if something goes wrong.

Before downloading and installing macOS 12 Monterey, make sure your Mac is secured. You can find information on this in our ultimate guide to backing up your Mac.

macOS 12 Monterey

(Image credit: Apple)

How to download macOS 12 Monterey

Now that Apple releases the new OS update on October 25th, downloading and installing macOS 12 Monterey should be pretty easy and painless.

Open the system settings and select “Software update”. The macOS 12 Monterey update should be there.

Click on “Update”. If the update is not found, restart your Mac, open the Mac App Store, and click Updates.

Click the operating system update and follow the instructions to download and install it.

How to Download and Install the macOS 12 Monterey Public Beta

Can’t wait until October 25th? In the meantime, you can still try the macOS 12 Monterey free public beta, which will give you a chance to see what’s coming. However, do not forget that this remains an early version of the operating system, so some bugs may persist.

For most people, it pays to hold on until October 25th and then just download the final version of macOS 12 Monterey. However, if you just can not Wait, here’s how to download and install the macOS 12 Monterey Public Beta.

Screenshot of the Apple Beta Software Program website

(Image credit: Apple)

1. Join the Apple Beta Software program

To install the macOS Monterey Public Beta, you must first sign up for the Apple Beta software program.

On the website, click Sign In, then sign in with your Apple ID. You must accept the Apple Beta Software Program Agreement (by clicking “Accept”) and you will now be registered.

macOS 12 Monterey

(Image credit: Apple)

2. Download the macOS 12 Monterey public beta

Once you’ve signed up for the Apple Beta Software program, you should receive a notification on your Mac that a new public beta is available.

Open the system settings and select “Software update”. The macOS 12 Monterey public beta should be here.

Click on “Update”. If the update is not found, restart your Mac, open the Mac App Store, and click Updates.

Click the public beta and follow the instructions to download and install it.

  • These are our 50 best Mac tips
  • Get an extra layer of security with a Mac VPN


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