First call for Ventura

Apple has confirmed that macOS 13 Ventura will be released on Monday 24 October. Whether you intend upgrading next week, or are still considering, this article summarises how it’s looking, and provides links to my previous articles to help you decide and prepare.

Most who have been testing betas of Ventura appear satisfied that it’s ready for release. I know of several who have been pressing for bugs to be fixed, and Apple’s engineers appear to have done so now. Ventura looks fully baked.

As far as I’m aware, the only significant feature originally intended for release in Ventura which might not be available next week is iCloud Shared Photo Library, although Apple has been testing that in iOS 16.1 at least. If it’s released with that, and included in the first release of Ventura, then I’d remain cautious about it, and ensure that all your Macs and devices are updated to OS versions which support it before trying to use it. Apple has also promised a new collaborative diagramming app, Freeform, that’s expected to ship before January.

The following articles should help you make up your mind, and provide useful tips for planning your upgrade:
Why you should consider upgrading to Ventura early
Should you upgrade to Ventura early, then?
Preparing to upgrade to Ventura
How to keep Monterey when upgrading to Ventura

System Settings

The switch from System Preferences to System Settings is probably the most controversial of the major changes in Ventura. There’s no way of avoiding it, so here are articles exploring what it brings:
System Settings in Ventura: a turn for the worse?
The transition from Preferences to Settings
From Control Panels to System Settings in Ventura


If you really love System Preferences (really?), then this is likely to have substantial impact. Personally, I’ve grown to prefer System Settings, provided that you’re ready to use its strengths and forget the old ways of System Preferences.

Stage Manager

While Stage Manager remains controversial on iPads, it’s mature and a joy to use in Ventura. Once you’ve found your way around your new system, I strongly recommend you spend a little time, ideally a few days, discovering Stage Manager’s strengths and limitations.
Why Ventura’s Stage Manager is so important



With Safari 16, the need for Ventura in order to migrate from passwords to passkeys may appear less pressing. It will be interesting to see how third-party support progresses, and whether that will be better for Ventura.
Why Passkeys are so important, and how you can use them now
Passkeys and biometrics

New updating system

Although we haven’t seen it in action yet, the new mechanism for delivering urgent patches looks very promising.
Apple can patch Ventura on the fly: RSR is coming

Potential problems

Some older apps which update themselves might leave the updated app with a broken signature.
Why some apps won’t run in Ventura and how to fix it

For those whose Macs are not officially supported for Ventura, Dortania’s OpenCore Legacy Patcher is making excellent progress, and should be available shortly after Ventura’s release.

What will I do? I’ve been running Ventura betas on my M1 MacBook Pro, and will be upgrading that, my Mac Studio and iMac Pro to Ventura on Monday. The only current Mac that I’ll keep on Monterey is my Intel MacBook Pro, and I expect that too will be upgraded well before the end of this year.

Finally, I rarely mention my commercial writing here, but in this case I’ll make an exception. I spent pretty well the whole of September using and exploring Ventura, to write articles providing many practical tips. The first has just appeared in MacFormat magazine issue 384, and contains 163 tips in total; an expanded version of that will appear shortly in the two-hundredth issue of MacLife magazine, appropriately with 200 tips. MacFormat and MacLife are two of the remaining Mac print magazines, are available across the world, and MacFormat at least has an electronic version in the (iOS) App Store.

Thanks to Julien for commenting that it looks like Apple intends releasing iCloud Shared Photo Library in iOS/iPadOS 16.1 and macOS 13, although I can’t find any announcement to that effect from Apple.