Install Catalina 10.15 on unsupported MacBook Pro

I have previously run Mojave 10.14 on an unsupported MacBook Pro thanks to Mojave Patcher. Now Catalina (10.15) is out, and so is Catalina Patcher (1.1.7).

The only story to tell is a short story of success:

  1. I downloaded Catalina Patcher
  2. I created a bootable SD-card
    • you can obviously use a USB drive instead
    • you can use a previously downloaded Install Catalina-app, or Catalina Patcher will help you to dowload
  3. I restarted the computer, held down Alt, and started the Catalina Installer
  4. There was no upgrade option, so I just picked “Install”.
  5. It took about an hour, a few restarts but I needed to do nothing
  6. All well! My user, all data, all configuration, all programs perfectly in place.

No need to patch manually, to choose hardware, or anything. All just smooth.

2020-04-05: Upgrade to 10.15.4

I was running 10.15(.0) for a while, but it never upgraded minor versions. With MojavePatcher, macOS upgraded itself, often resulting in an unbootable system (until patched again with a more current MojavePatcher). With CatalinaPatcher it seems macOS simply does not upgrade. I will not tell you what did not work, but what I finally did.

  1. Download latest Catalina Patcher 1.4
  2. Run Catalina Patcher
    1. let it download full Catalina from Apple
      (despite I already had a 10.15 install App since before)
    2. install on a USB drive
  3. Restart the computer using the Catalina USB Drive
  4. Reinstall macOS on top of itself.
    (got a question about some time-machine-thing that I accepted)

After this, my MacBook Pro 6,2 came up with 10.15.4 and all seems fine. Even TimeMachine.

So upgrade minor version seems to be about reinstalling full versions.

2020-05-30: Upgrade to 10.15.5

This was an easy update, I did just as for 10.15.4.

  1. Download latest Catalina Patcher 1.4.4
  2. Run Catalina Patcher
    1. let it download Catalina from Apple
      (not using previously downloaded Catalina)
    2. install on a USB drive
  3. Restart the computer using Catalina USB Drive
  4. Reinstall mac os on top of itself

Everything seems to be working just fine.

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