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When Apple Computer or Microsoft Corporation release an upgrade to their operating system (OS), the upgrade normally includes many new and improved features. We are often anxious to take advantage of these new features as soon as possible, but there often are compatibility issues when new system software becomes available.

You should make sure your computer will work with the new operating system before upgrading. Both Apple and Microsoft list the minimum requirements necessary for your computer to work with their operating systems. However, to ensure your computer has the necessary components to work optimally with the new operating system, prior to upgrading, you should contact the IT Service Desk (Help Desk) at 646-2999, send e-mail to help@dartmouth.edu, or call your department's IT support office.

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Program Compatibility

Dartmouth Computing Services also recommends you investigate the compatibility of the software programs and peripherals (i.e., printers, scanners, external drives) that you rely on prior to installing any new operating system on your computer. Most software vendors list compatibility issues with new operating system releases on their Web sites.

Vendors whose products have compatibility problems with a new operating system may release updates, fixes, or patches to their programs shortly after the release of the upgraded operating system. You should monitor the Web sites of those vendors whose products you use to find out when their updates become available.

Computing Services tests new operating systems with a variety of supported equipment and software as soon as they can, and posts information regarding any problems they encounter on the Computing Services Web site; see Compatibility Matrix.

Additionally, you may want to monitor information about new operating systems and your favorite software and hardware at http://www.versiontracker.com/. This site contains information for Mac OS X, Windows, iPhone, and Palm software. Macintosh users should monitor Apple's Web site (http://www.apple.com). Windows users should also monitor Microsoft's Web site (http://www.microsoft.com) and the Web sites of those vendors whose software they use on their computers.

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Last Updated: 8/19/10