macOS Catalina: How to Say Goodbye to 32-bit

Ashley Jarosch
September 3, 2019

It’s a Security Thing

32-bit apps are limited in how much memory they can access and require more overhead to run, leading to worse performance than 64-bit apps can provide.

32-bit apps do not run on Catalina. Period.

And that’s a good thing! 32-bit apps can’t leverage the power and sophistication of 64-bit processors or all the memory available in the equipment. Plus, they can’t take advantage of the security enhancements continually be added to macOS.

There’s a finite number of 32-bit apps in the wild. Most apps have been upgrading code and incorporating the new features and functionality provided by 64-bit architecture, all while maintaining security compliance with macOS releases. In fact, Apple began requiring all apps in the App Store to support 64-bit in 2018.

Who’s This Going to Impact?

Now that Catalina’s here and a certain app won’t work because it’s 32-bit, two people are going to feel it: The end-user and you, the IT admin.

But let’s take a step back from that pain point because if you haven’t upgraded to Catalina yet, you haven’t crossed this bridge yet. Everything is testable. With a quick inventory of your environment, you have the visibility to see which apps are still on 32-bit. From there, you can explore conversations with those vendors to understand if and when they will incorporate 64-bit. Or, you can find a replacement for those apps and run it by your users before making a switch.

We’re Ready. Wait…Are We?

Catalina is here and apps using 32-bit code won’t work—plain and simple. Seeing your environment and testing within it will always be the name of the game. Today it’s 32-bit apps. Tomorrow you’ll be ready and tackling something new.

Learn More About macOS Catalina

Listen to the on-demand webinar for three things to know about Catalina’s arrival.