Macintosh OS X El Capitan (10.11)

Last Updated: 04/03/2017

El Capitan Release Information 


As with many new operating system releases, there are initially a number of incompatibilities with commonly used applications and El Capitan is no exception. As a general rule, the Office of Information Technology (OIT) recommends most users should wait for a version update which will account for any initial bugs in the major release. Also, users should confirm compatibility of their commonly used applications before upgrading.

Early-adopters who are comfortable with the typical problems and potential application incompatibilities associated with new versions of operating systems and are willing to accept the risk of software that has only been minimally tested are advised to upgrade as they see fit.

El Capitan Changes

While OS X El Capitan adds some new features and has a different look and feel, it is designed to be familiar to users of previous OS releases with little to no training. For a full listing of new features, please visit the official Apple OS X El Capitan information page.

Compatibility Testing

Testing of El Capitan conducted by OIT has found that some upgrades result in severe, but solvable installation problems. If you choose to upgrade and you run into problems, please bring your computer to an OIT Walk-In Center, contact Dedicated Desktop Support, or email the IT Service Center at

Applications with known issues

Application Issue
Various Applications from the Mac App Store

Some applications from the Mac App Store may not work with El Capitan. If you rely on any of these applications, it is a good idea to verify they will work with El Capitan before upgrading. To verify compatibility, visit the application’s page in the app store, visit the vendor’s website, or check a compatibility resource such as Roaring Apps.

Office 2016 Users have have reported problems with Microsoft Office 2016 after upgrading to El Capitan. Office applications sometimes freeze during operation and unexpectedly shut down.

iLife applications:
Keynote, Pages, Sheets

There have been some reports that the newest versions of these applications need to be installed.
On Campus Printing  There have been reports that El Capitan is not compatible with print drivers on campus. The recommended workaround utilizes mobile printing. Visit the Mobile printing page for more information. 

Download instructions

Prior to download

  1. Always backup your data before upgrading the operating system.
  2. Know your Apple ID and Password.
  3. Verify your Apps work with Yosemite by visiting the application’s page in the Mac App Store, visiting the vendor’s website, or check a compatibility resource such as Roaring Apps.

Download El Capitan

  1. Upgrade to OS X El Capitan from the Mac App Store.
  2. License keys are not required.
  3. Follow installation instructions.