UC Davis Information & Educational Technology


The latest Apple operating system, Mac OS 10.8 (also known as Mountain Lion), was released in July 2012. It is now available via the Apple Store. This Web site provides information about application compatibility with the Mac OSs, Microsoft Office for Mac, and Safari; software licensing, security, as well as other useful links and resources.

Below you will find the recommendations for the latest Mac OS X. Please visit the Mac OS X compatibility matrix for applications and software that have been tested.

Campus Recommendation

In consultation with the campus technical community, IET has developed recommendations and support plans for the latest Mac OS X and continues to examine its compatibility with other applications commonly used on campus. IET began supporting Mac OS 10.7 in October, and makes the following recommendations:

New Computers

New Apple computers are currently being shipped with the latest Mac OS X. Students, staff, faculty, and departments should be aware that according to Apple's licensing terms, downgrades to earlier versions of the operating system are not permitted. IET strongly recommends that you review the results of the compatibility testing to find out whether the software applications and online services you frequently use are compatible with the latest Mac OS X before purchasing.


IET sees no immediate need to upgrade to Mac OS 10.7; however, if you’re running a version of Mac OS 10.4 or older, you are out of compliance with campus Cyber Safety Policy, and we recommend you review the campus hardware recommendations and replace or upgrade your system’s hardware and/or software as soon as possible. When determining whether to upgrade from previous Mac OS X versions, students, staff, and faculty should check with their departmental technology support staff and take into consideration the system’s hardware configurations and any installed software, which may of may not be compatible with the latest Mac OS X.

NOTE: Mac OS 10.6 and greater does not run on older PowerPC- based systems such as the G4 and G5 Macintoshes.

If you are currently running Mac OS 10.5, you should plan to upgrade no later than the end of this year (December 31, 2011). Apple actively supports the last three operating system versions for about one year after a new version is released, and then the oldest is no longer actively supported. Running operating systems that are no longer actively supported by the vendor on UC Davis computer networks is a violation of the campus Cyber Safety Policy. IET plans to end support for Mac OS 10.4.

Before upgrading your operating system, you should back up your system.


Students purchasing new Apple computers should purchase a system with the latest Mac OS X. Please check with your school or college to find out if it has specific recommendations.

Please note, Mac OS 10.6 requires Parallels version 4, and Endnote is still undergoing testing for this OS.

Faculty and staff

When purchasing a computer for personal or university use, UC Davis faculty and Staff should check with their departmental technology support staff to determine whether to purchase an Apple computer with the latest Mac OS X.

Please note, Mac OS 10.6 requires Parallels version 4, and Endnote is still undergoing testing for this OS.


When purchasing new computers for departments, technology support staff should review the results of the software application and online service compatibility testing to determine whether the lasts Mac OS X will integrate into their existing infrastructure and work with frequently used services and software.

For more information, contact the IT Express Computing Services Help Desk at 530-754-HELP (4357), or email ithelp@ucdavis.edu.

Thank you to the individuals and groups who generously volunteered their time and expertise to test the various applications against the last Mac OS X. (view the list of volunteers)