Recommendations for Apple macOS Sonoma (macOS14.0)


University Systems has a responsibility to provide secure and reliable technology to our community and as such keep up with the ever-changing technology environment. This includes the deployment of additional technologies and supporting our community to work and learn remotely, while also adapting to changes such as the introduction of new technologies that are not immediately compatible with our environment.

Apple introduced a new operating system (Sonoma/macOS 14) on September 26, 2023. Sonoma is the latest release of the Apple operating system for Macintosh computers such as iMacs, MacBooks and Mac Minis. For more details on Sonoma see Apple's Sonoma information page.

A thorough test and review of the release version of Sonoma has been completed to ensure the new macOS is compatible with the software and computing environment our community relies on for teaching and research. This includes UVic specific applications and services.

Buying new computers

If you are buying a new Macintosh computer, it may come with Sonoma pre-installed. We recommend that you run Software Update to ensure you have any updates both for macOS but also for any Apple applications that may require an update to be compatible with Sonoma.

While most core software used at UVic has or will have versions available that are compatible with Sonoma, other software may not yet be compatible and either won’t install or run or is not officially supported by the vendor. Each software vendor has offered different timelines for compatibility, and we are testing new versions as they are released. All of this information is documented in this bulletin, which we published in September 2023 and will keep updated.

You may rely on software that is not compatible with Sonoma. This will include any 32bit-only applications, which will be reliant on updates from vendors to 64-bit. This could include hardware drivers (printers, scanners, lab equipment, etc).

If you're considering purchasing a new Macintosh Computer or upgrading to Sonoma, please do some research to ensure the software you require is compatible with Sonoma.

Upgrading existing computers

We caution that updating to Sonoma may cause incompatibilities that could affect the work you do on your Mac. Rolling back the macOS to a previous version requires a full backup, wipe of your hard drive, and reinstall of the older operating system.

If you have technical support through Desktop Support Services (DSS), in your department, or through the Computer Help Desk, please contact them to arrange your upgrade.

If you are planning to update your existing Mac to Sonoma, you should follow Apple’s recommended process.

It is especially important that you back up your Mac prior to upgrading to avoid data loss in case the upgrade fails.

Disable Optimized Storage feature

Please note that the Optimized Storage feature in Sonoma may transfer sensitive or confidential materials from your hard drive to iCloud. University Systems strongly recommends that any faculty and staff upgrading to Sonoma disable Optimized Storage and refrain from using iCloud to store any university data as the data may not be stored in compliance with privacy legislation and university policy. OneDrive, or UVic network shares are the preferred places to store data.

Compatibility with UVic software and resources

This website is a crowdsourced library of software that reports on compatibility with various versions of macOS. It may help inform you whether or not software you rely on is compatible with Sonoma.

UVic-specific applications in the list below have been reviewed and tested for compatibility with Sonoma. This list will be updated as we test any new versions that vendors release.

It is always important to update to the latest version available from the vendors for best compatibility.

The following applications are compatible in Sonoma:

  • Adobe CC - please see Adobe Support for more information about specific applications
  • Cisco AnyConnect VPN
  • Echo360 Universal Capture
  • IBM Spectrum Protect (Backup)
  • iClicker (in-class polling)
  • Microsoft Office - make sure to update to version 16.77 or newer
  • Ricoh print drivers
  • Microsoft Teams
  • Zoom
  • MSDE

Note: Kyocera and other older print drivers have not been tested. Printer manufacturers rarely release updates for older printer models for new operating system versions. There's no guarantee your printer will work with Sonoma.

The following UVic online services are compatible with Sonoma's new browser, Safari 14:

  • Banner
  • Connect
  • Online tools
  • Brightspace
  • Online Academic Community
  • Cascade
  • FAST

External hardware

There is always a chance of incompatibility with certain external hardware such as docks.

You may want to research online or ask the vendor if Sonoma is fully supported on their devices before upgrading your Mac or purchasing a new Macintosh computer with Sonoma pre-installed.

This is especially important for older devices that require drivers to be installed.

Replacement external hardware may need to be purchased in order for it to be compatible with Sonoma.

Questions about Sonoma?

If you have any questions about Sonoma, please contact the Computer Help Desk or your Desktop Support Services contact for additional information. We will continue to update this bulletin as we test additional features and compatibility with Sonoma.