As OS X Yosemite beta opens to public, early testers report download problems

As OS X Yosemite beta opens to public, early testers report download problems

Summary: Being a beta tester for an unfinished operating system is risky business. But some would-be beta testers of Apple's upcoming OS are reporting problems even getting to the beta bits after receiving their invitation from Apple.


Apple yesterday opened up the beta of its next operating system, OS X Yosemite, to the public at large. Today many would-be beta testers are reporting difficulties in downloading the software. And as luck would have it, I’ve reproduced the issue here.

[Update: After 22 unsuccessful download attempts I switched the problem machine from a wireless connection to wired Ethernet, and the download succeeded.]

The beta isn’t available as an unrestricted download. To gain access, you have to submit your Apple ID to an alias in Cupertino. The first million applicants will get a return email with a link and a redemption code that begins downloading the update through the App Store.

Judging by comments on social media and in forums, some people have succeeded in installing the beta, but others have not.

When this problem occurs, the download from the App Store (a little over 5GB in size) appears to proceed normally, but near the end it fails, displaying this error message:


Repeating the download attempt results in the identical behavior.

It’s worth preempting one common reaction right here: This isn’t a bug with the new beta operating system. This issue occurs in the App Store on a copy of the latest released and fully supported OS X version, Mavericks.

Several Twitter users have reported the same problem, with one, @jjsoracco, tweeting a picture of the same error message I received. Others describe similar symptoms.

Apple doesn’t have a public support community for OS X Yosemite-related issues, but a couple customers have posted reports about this issue in the OS X Mavericks section.

The comments of a blog post at 9to5Mac also contain numerous reports of download problems — not slow speeds, but fast downloads that fail near the end.


In a separate report, 9to5Mac noted that iCloud Mail was experiencing “slower than normal responses” with confirmation from none other than John (“I’m a PC”) Hodgman. Apple’s System Status page notes that “multiple store services” and “multiple iCloud services” were affected for roughly two hours beginning around noon on Thursday, July 24, but those problems are reportedly resolved now.

Improvements in iCloud are a key part of this fall's product roadmap for Apple, which has been roundly criticized in the past for weaknesses in its cloud service.

If you’re experiencing issues with the Yosemite beta download, let me know. If you’ve found a solution, even better. A lot of people are anxious to try this beta.

Update: A MacRumors discussion thread suggests that the issues might be geographic, with most problems occurring in the Western United States. Several participants were able to overcome the problems by switching to a different DNS server (outside the Western U.S.) or using a VPN to spoof a different location for the download.

I’ve asked Apple for comment and will update this post if I receive a reply.

Topic: Apple

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  • I am staying well away from this for now

    Apple isn't used to doing public betas, so I am letting other people cut their teeth on this one!

    Mind you, I could get it through the dev program, but I don't generally do beta OSes anymore. Not worth the hassle.
    • It's trivial enough to toss on an external

      hard drive and boot into it to play around.
  • Thought about giving the Yosemite beta a whirl...

    ...into a Parallels Desktop VM, mind you. Not ready to risk my actual Mac.

    Given the problems you've outlined above about getting the Yosemite installer in the first place, I think I'll wait it out until it's released. Playing around with a new OS is pretty much guaranteed to sap my productivity in the short-term, in any case.

    (I did install and try out the Windows 7 pre-release back when that came out - very glad that I did, because it convinced me to ditch XP as soon as 7 was available to buy.)
    Alan Ralph
    • do it

      mac 10.10 is great no bugs yet to find and i have played lol iv made bugs my self and sorted them out my self thats it carnt find a thing its so smooth i think
    • Why would you use beta software

      In a productive enviroment? not the best choice of action.
      Anthony E
  • OS X Yosemite Beta Download issues....

    Could be that the Server is overloaded. OS X Yosemite represents quite a departure from previous OS X releases with its updated UI therefore no likely there is more interest compared to OS X Mavericks.
    Furthermore OS X Yosemite Beta is available to the public which is a first so that means non-developers are able to get their hands on it. Could be that many existing OS X users are creating a separate partition for OS X Yosemite Beta.

    Personally as a Developer I despise OS X Yosemite. It represents everything OS X should not be. Its too much like iOS and I am not just talking appearance. I guess all Mac users knew it was coming but no doubt it will be a hugely controversial release amongst the Mac Community. That being said because of its appearance it is likely to generate more interest for those considering a Mac.

    Not for me though. I will be sticking with OS X Mavericks, Mountain Lion and Snow Leopard for my production machines including my aged Early 2006 Mac Mini on steroids.
    • bit late but please tell me :)

      i tried a partition but it would not show how would i have done it

      bit late now but i would like to know
      • .

        did right a bit more but its not on there ❓❓

        i said i only added 1 by the + button was that it or was there more

        by the way yes i did apply it lol
  • A shill is always a shill

    Every time I think Ed has finally decided to become just an honest reporter on Mircrosoft issues good and bad he disappoints and decides he is an Apple reporter when he can find some bad news on his second, or is it third, favourite operating system of choice.

    Come on then Ed tell us all what has this to do with your Microsoft expertise. I suspect when you contacted Apple they must have laughed and wondered if there was no Microsoft news to report today.
    • You're so predictable

      Thanks for the laughs.
      Ed Bott
      • I think martin's point is...

        Why is it that Ed appears to write about Apple only when there is something bad to say and never otherwise? At least, I presume that is martin23's point.

        That being said, I agree with FenceSitter's comment here when he said that this is good information to know irrespective of who is providing the info or why. Thank you Ed.

        I read elsewhere that Yosemite beta traffic has doubled on some sites. It might be interesting to see ZDNet's traffic stats in that regard. I'll bet it's a tiny fraction, but the ratio of beta to Mavericks on a site like this is likely higher than a site receiving traffic from the general population (so to speak).
        • Here's why

          It's a Friday afternoon. I'm the one who discovered this issue because I was looking forward to installing this beta.

          No one else seems to be writing about it so I thought this would be a public service. I was scrupulous to get my facts straight and not to insert any snark at all.

          So what part of that do you have a problem with?
          Ed Bott
          • Hey. I said "thank you"

            I have no problem with it at all. I even said your post was good information. Perhaps it being Friday you're a little tired and Over-Sensitive? I hope you have a restful weekend!
          • What I have a problem with

            Ed why I have a problem is that on every single Windows beta over the last 10 years I have had problems until we got to windows 8. Everyone else and every organisation I know has had the same problems. Sometimes the download was just slow or failed on other occasions it would trash one machine or another (lets be honest its only in the last few major upgrades users data has moved across with any degree of absolute certainty). Not once do I remember you getting very excited. No I am wrong. Perhaps you wrote about the delays as an issue on at least one occasion. But you told us this was down to the phenomenal interest.

            I would be just as critical if those who write about the Apple ecosystem suddenly posted about MS.
    • Why the Personal attack?

      Had the article been written by any other author you no doubt would not of made such a comment.
      • Nobody else here would have

        penned the article with such glee. That's the point.
        • Glee?

          You have issues, dude. Please point to the "gleeful" part.
          Ed Bott
          • Gleeful because

            Even you said what resolved the issue. I quote your line from the "article" above: "Update: After 22 unsuccessful download attempts I switched the problem machine from a wireless connection to wired Ethernet, and the download succeeded."

            So how is your switching from wireless to wired Ethernet have anything to do with Apple servers? Answer: IT DOESN'T! It has to do with the endpoint doing the downloading. I see it all the time at work on all different kinds of devices that connect to our corporate network. Wireless is not nearly as effective at maintaining a connection as wired.
    • There ya go...

      shot the messenger, ignore the message.
    • Should a reporter ignore a problem

      Should Ed cover up Apple's problems? I think a reporter should report the news personally.

      Or is it sacrilege to say anything remotely negative about Apple in your mind?