How to Install the macOS Catalina Beta

As you know, Apple usually offers two macOS Catalina betas, the first one is a developer and the second one is a public beta. The developer beta was introduced in the launch event and the public beta is now available for every Mac users to try.

Here we’ll cover you to make a safe backup of data on your Mac so that you can go back to in case there are any problems, as well as the way to download and install the macOS Catalina beta on your mac with two different options, depending on your setup.

Steps to Backup Your Mac The Right Way

Before installing the macOS Catalina beta, you first need to your Mac and make sure to create a second backup. This will freeze a snapshot in time so that you can go back if you want to downgrade to macOS Mojave. Many users say that they like to keep their backup on a USB hard drive, but you can save it anywhere you want. If you still have enough space on your backup drive, you should not do this.

  1. Connect your external hard drive into your Mac.
  2. Click the Apple icon the upper left.
  3. SelectSystem Preferences from the menu.
  4. Find and choose the Time Machine
  5. Click on Add or Remove Backup Disk.
  6. Select the new disk and click on use disk.
  7. Wait for the Time Machine to start a backup.

After the process is done, unplug the external hard drive and keep it in a safe place. By this way, you can easily go back to macOS Mojave if you face too many problems with the macOS Catalina beta.

Steps to Download the macOS Catalina Beta

If you are a developer, you will absolutely have an Apple Developer account. If you are just an average user, the Apple Public beta will be the best option.

To join the public macOS Catalina beta program, you first need to visit the Apple Beta Software Program website and then register an account. Once done, you can then download the macOS Developer Beta Access Utility.

If you are a developer, you should download the macOS Developer Beta Access Utility from Apple. To do so:

  1. Visit Apple Developer Website.
  2. Select Develop and then on Downloads.
  3. Log in your Apple ID.
  4. Scroll down until you see the macOS 10.15 beta 1 from the list.
  5. Just, click on Download to start downloading the macOS Catalina Developer Beta Utility.

You can also find the macOS Catalina Developer Beta Access Utility even when you are not a developer user by downloading Beta Profiles. This allows you to directly download the same file without the need for signing up an Apple developer account. Since it’s opposite to Apple’s terms and conditions, you’d better wait for the public macOS Catalina beta.

After you have downloaded the file, continue to follow the direction below:

  • Double click on macOSDeveloperBetaAccessUtility.pkg  file
  • Wait for the installer file to complete. Then, open the Mac App Store Update

After that, you will see the macOS 10.15 installer that can be downloaded on your Mac. Once it completes downloading, you will be prompted to install the beta. There are a few ways to install the macOS 10.15 beta on your Mac.

How to Install the macOS Catalina Beta

If you simply want to install the macOS Catalina beta on your Mac computer as the primary operating system, it’s a straightforward process. Remember that you should only do it on a spare device. After you download the macOS Catalina developer beta, you will be prompted to start the system installation. In case you cancel it, find it in the downloads folder on your Mac.

  1. Once the Installer is running, click Continue.
  2. Agree to the Terms and Conditions.
  3. Click Install.
  4. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the installation.

Over the next 30-45 minutes, your device will restart at least once to complete the macOS 10.15 installation. If it appears to freeze or pause, just wait for it to resume. You should be plugged into power during this process. When your Mac restarts, follow the instructions and if needed sign back in with your Apple ID and Password.

Also see: How To Quickly Hide Or Show Icons On Mac

How to Install the macOS Catalina Beta on a Partition

If you don’t have enough space on your Mac to install the macOS Catalina beta, the best thing is to create a partition on your hard drive and install this new MacOS version on there. It will keep your current macOS installation in place and easily switch back and forth. However, make sure your Mac has enough space with the minimum amount of 30GB, but if possible, spare 50GB to avoid unexpected issues.

Before you start the installation, you first have to create a second partition. To do so.

  1. OpenDisk Utility  on your Mac by searching it in Spotlight
  2. Click on your Mac’s drive. (Usually Macintosh HD or Fusion)
  3. Select the Partition Section.
  4. Click on the plus (+) button.
  5. Make a new Partition for 30-50GB in size.
  6. Set a name for this
  7. Click on Apply and wait for the changes to save.

If you are using APFS, you can then create a new Volume in Disk Utility tool. To do so:

  1. LaunchDisk Utility on your Mac
  2. Select your Mac’s drive.
  3. Click on the + button above Volume.
  4. Name this Volume Beta
  5. Click on Create

Wait for a few seconds and you already have a partition to install the macOS 10.15 beta on, you can then return to the installation options.

  1. Run the macOS Catalina Installer.
  2. Click on Continue and agree to the terms.
  3. When you see a disk, click onShow All Disks.
  4. Choose the Partition you just made.
  5. Click on Install.

Wait for the process to complete and once done, you will have a clean clean installation of macOS Catalina running on the partition so that you can have it tested without affecting your macOS Mojave installation.

You can also follow the installation instructions to manually install the macOS Catalina beta on an external hard drive.

When restarting your Mac, you can also press and hold the Option key to open up a Startup Manager so that you can select to boot into macOS Mojave or macOS Catalina version. Another way is to head to System Preferences -> Startup Disk and select the preferred startup disk if you want to primarily use the macOS 10.15 version.

How to quit the macOS Catalina Beta

In case you want to go back to the macOS Mojave installation, you should quit the macOS Catalina beta program to keep receiving macOS Mojave updates. To do so, just head to System Preferences and choose Software Updates. On the left part of the screen, click on Details. When you see a window popup, simply click on Restore Defaults. Doing this will remove your macOS Mojave installation out of the beta program, but other partitions are still in the beta stage.