Apple released version 10.9 of their OS (“Mavericks”) on Tuesday. I’m sure it’s the greatest, biggest, and best-est release of an operating system in the history of man (just like every version that preceded it), and it’s nice that it’s now free, but I still recommend that you wait to install it until there is a version 10.9.1 or even 10.9.2. Although Apple has made some changes to the interface, included apps, and under the hood, there is nothing particularly pressing about this release, and I’ve encountered a few incompatibilities that need to be resolved.

Whenever you are ready to install, you should do a few things first:

  • Backup your drive. You never know if something is going to go wrong.
  • Use Disk Utility in /Applications/Utilities/ to check your disk and repair permissions.
  • Use Software Update to download the update, but do not install it right away. Instead, create a bootable, USB flash drive first. (I created a script to assist with that. Use at your own risk.) Make sure your flash drive is at least 8 GB and can be erased.
  • Backup again.

After you’ve taken these steps, go ahead and install (you’ll find the installer in /Applications/), then work through the incompatibilities, if any. Also, be sure to run Software Update again to grab the software that now relies on Mavericks, like the new versions of iPhoto and Pages.

[Written by Kem Tekinay]