And now the two important questions to ask when you are considering upgrading to Mountain Lion:
Can I upgrade to Mountain Lion?
Almost any Mac that runs Lion will also run Mountain Lion as well as most Macs since 2007. Here are the requirements:
- Your Mac must be running OS X 10.7 Lion or OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard. If your Mac meets the hardware criteria below but is on OS X 10.5 or below, you can technically upgrade to Mountain Lion but it will take quite a bit of hoop jumping to get there.
- One of these Macs:
- iMac (Mid 2007 or newer)
- MacBook (Late 2008 Aluminum, or Early 2009 or newer)
- MacBook Pro (Mid/Late 2007 or newer)
- MacBook Air (Late 2008 or newer)
- Mac mini (Early 2009 or newer)
- Mac Pro (Early 2008 or newer)
- 2 gig of RAM and 8 gig of available hard drive space
- Certain features of Mountain Lion require additional hardware. You can see those requirements here.
Next question: Should I or do I have to upgrade to Mountain Lion?
The answer to "Do I have to?" is no. Your Mac is exactly the same this week as it was last week and before. If what you have works for you and you don't have any desire to move forward, you can certainly do that. Keep in mind that Apple and most third-party software developers don't support don't support old versions of their software after a certain point. which means bugs and security problems won't be fixed and some features that rely on other services (ie, Mobile Me) may stop working.
"Should I?" is a harder question to answer.
If you run older software, it may not run in Mountain Lion. Support for many older apps was dropped in Lion. Check out this tip about upgrading to Lion for more info. (Skip down the the section "Software.")
If you are running Lion (OS X 10.7) then the jump to Mountain Lion is an easy one. Pretty much everything that works in Lion also works in Mountain Lion. Plus you get all the new features of Mountain Lion. If you have multiple Macs or if you have iOS devices like the iPad, iPhone or iPod touch, I think you will like what Mountain Lion has to offer.
To help you decide, here is a list from Apple's website of the 200 new features of Mountain Lion.
Tomorrow: how to upgrade to Mountain Lion.