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El Capitan (OS X 10.11) Is Coming! What Should Video Pros Do About it?

Before you know it, your Mac’s going to start letting you know (gently at first, then more forcefully) that OSX 10.11, or El Capitan, is ready to be installed so the people at divergent media have published a guide aimed at helping the video pro address the situation. “Big OS upgrades always present a bit of a dilemma for folks in the video industry,” they point out. “New versions of OS X bring lots of exciting updates, better performance, and new features. But they can also create compatibility problems, and there’s always a risk that things could go wrong. Here are a few of our tips on upgrading.

The first thing they suggest you do? “WAIT. Seriously, when El Capitan ships, just ignore it. Go about your business. Come back to it in a month or two. If you’ve got a personal machine that you don’t need for production projects, upgrade that one first.

“When you’re ready to do the upgrade, there are a few preliminary tasks you should perform. First, check for compatibility with your critical apps. Generally, you’ll want to wait for an “all clear” from the vendors that you rely on….Some apps, like Avid, can take a bit before this happens, because they need to validate many hardware configurations.

“Make sure you update any drivers for hardware devices like capture cards or storage arrays. It’s generally best to update these before the upgrade, because a bad driver could potential cause a “crash on boot” situation, which is much more difficult to recover from.

“Finally, check your backups. Have they been completing successfully? Are you confident that you can restore from them? Many users like to use a tool like SuperDuper to make a bootable backup, just in case. That makes recovery a lot easier if something does go wrong. This is especially important if you primarily rely on remote backups (like Backblaze or Crashplan), because those can dramatically extend the time it takes to restore a Mac.”