Apple Seeds Second Public Beta of macOS Big Sur to Public Beta Testers

Apple today seeded the second beta of the upcoming macOS 11 Big Sur update to its public beta testing group, allowing non-developers to give the software a try ahead of its public release this fall. The second beta comes two weeks after the first beta.


Beta testers who signed up for Apple's beta testing program can download the macOS Big Sur beta through the Software Update mechanism in System Preferences after installing the proper profile.

Mac users who want to be a part of Apple's beta testing program can sign up to participate on the beta website, which gives users access to iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS betas. Potential beta testers should make a full backup before installing ‌macOS Big Sur‌, and it may not be wise to install the update on a primary machine because betas can be unstable.

macOS Big Sur introduces a refined design for the macOS operating system, which is more similar to iOS but immediately familiar to Mac users with tweaks to window design, color palette, app icons, system sounds, menu bars, and sidebars.

The update brings Control Center to the Mac for the first time, providing quicker access to system controls for things like volume, keyboard brightness, screen brightness, Wi-Fi connection, and more.

An updated Notification Center includes more interactive notifications and redesigned widgets that mirror the new ‌widgets‌ in iOS 14. Notifications are now grouped by app, and you can customize which ‌widgets‌ show up.

Safari has a new customizable start page, built-in translation, and a Privacy Report feature that lets you know which trackers each website is using to follow you across the web. There's a new Mac App Store category for extensions, and you can now control the specific sites that extensions are able to work with for more privacy.

The Messages app for Mac has been overhauled to bring it more in line with the Messages app for iOS and it supports features like pinned conversations, mentions, inline replies, Messages effects, and Memoji creation and Memoji stickers. Search is also better to make it easier to find old conversations, photos, links, and more.

A redesigned Maps app in macOS Big Sur adds support for Look Around, indoor maps, Guides, and Shared ETA updates, plus it can be used to generate cycling routes and routes with charging stops for electric vehicles, which can be sent to iPhone.

There are also smaller updates for apps like Photos, Music, and Home, with a full list of everything new in macOS Big Sur available in our roundup.

Related Roundup: macOS 11 Big Sur

Top Rated Comments

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5 weeks ago


Question: Is macOS Server being discontinued in macOS 11?

Answer With Question: macOS Server still exists?
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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5 weeks ago


Answer With Question: macOS Server still exists?

Like a spider that lost 5 legs.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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5 weeks ago


Somebody please check the column view in Finder. Has Apple finally fixed “Right Size All Columns Individually” option, so that columns automatically resize depending on the width of the folder/file name when browsing through various folders?

Right now all this right click feature does is adjusting the width of only one column ones and than that width remain the same for all other columns even if nested folder has very short file names in it.

Browsing files in column view in Finder has been a disaster for years now. ForkLift mostly does the job but at some things it is not good enough to be a full Finder replacement. It is simply time for Apple to fix this completely broken feature.

I have been reporting this throughout the whole beta test period of Mojave and I think once or twice during Catalina. The only hope for this to be addressed is to make some of the big youtubers / tech sites mentioning it and hopefully the right person from Apple sees this.

This issue has been since day one when I started using Macs in 2013 and basically covers:

OS X 10.9 - Mavericks
OS X 10.10 - Yosemite
OS X 10.11 - El Capitan
macOS 10.12 - Sierra
macOS 10.13 - High Sierra
macOS 10.14 - Mojave
macOS 10.15 - Catalina

Sometimes I wonder if anyone at Apple actually does the job on their Macs, you know - like working with tons of files. ?‍♂️

I tried this on numerous files with 4 columns each, with at least 3 truncated file columns in each and the “Right Size All Columns Individually” (secondary/"right" click on any vertical border) worked perfectly; allowing no less or no more space that was needed for each column with no truncated titles. I tried with both font size 13 and 14.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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5 weeks ago


I like Big Sur. I believe that it is shaping up to be an excellent release.

The only issues I have are with the menubar. I hate the new menubar. I mean, I HATE the new menubar. I've submitted feedback to Apple begging for them to allow a legacy implementation in system preferences.

If some of you could do the same, I would appreciate it.

At least be specific about what you hate
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
5 weeks ago
Hopefully this fixes Spotlight Search. My only issue with the beta has been that Spotlight Search seems to be half as effective as before - sometimes only folders appear, sometimes only apps appear, very annoying considering it's one of the most useful features on macOS...
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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5 weeks ago
awesome - I could be wrong, but the feedback for beta 5 so far .. in the one day of exposure.. has been that its rather regressive bug wise and such from beta 4 / PB1.

Might want to tread carefully

(want to be careful from one beta to the next as a general practice but)
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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