What You Need To Know;

Over the past year or two I seem to have been busier with older APPLE computers with people buying them and not being able to use them or they just stop working with certain web-sites and web browsers. Flash player is now being removed from browser programs so operating systems need to keep up and where APPLE are concerned its very important as they like Microsoft abandon older operating systems as computers age.

At the time of posting this (March 2021) the current oldest updatatable OSX (APPLE operating system) is mid 2011 computers. They can upgrade to OSX High Sierra which will only be supported for a limited time. There are some older computers from 2009 that can be upgraded to High Sierra but there’s not many about nowadays given their age.

Any Apple computer made in 2012 or ‘mid’ 2012 as APPLE call it will upgrade to OSX Mohave and for late 2012 models OSX Catalina which is currently the OS prior to their latest offering ‘Big Sur’. So if your comtemplating buying an older APPLE computer you MUST read up on this information prior to diving in for you’re dream computer.

Model Numbers Mean Everything!

When buying a used ‘MAC’ you need to look for and/or ask about the model number which they all have. Its usually on the bottom of the computer, on iMacs its on the bottom of the stand, on laptops its on the bottom and is so small just grab a magnifying glass before you evgen try (personal tip) as even with gogs on you might not see it but it’ll look like this amongst the tiny print; model: A1311 or 1278 etc. I need this if you’re going to contact me about a repair ok?

Here’s a great site where you can look up information on Mac’s to find the model number and everything else you need to know about the computer your thinking of buying.

Don’t fall for online links to buy an upgrade to Mohave or High Sierra etc. as it’s all free via APPLE’s recovery system and App store seeing as you bought their product unlike other operating system manufacturers who want a license to fart near a computer! If you can’t do it or don’t have the time I’ll do it for you as cheaply as I can as I realise its an old computer and the cost is paramount!

OSX (operating system)

As you probably know APPLE computers tend to cost a lot more than bog standard Windows computers but nobody seems to understand why? Well the main reason is the OSX as it’s APPLE’s baby! They’re constantly working on it to improve it and most importantly keep it secure! You’ll not need to buy anti virus software as the OSX is Linux based and they work hard to secure it! Safari is the weak point as annoying browser addons (adware and spyware) can be injected into it from the net but are easily removed.

They develop their hardware (computers) well in advance and take a lot of time to get things right prior to releasing them which even goes for their OSX security updates. How many times have you seen Windows updates either not install or cause an issue on you’re laptop or PC over the years? Microsoft create an update, lash it out there and hope it works and I personally love them for it for obvious reasons lol 😉

The OSX is the key part of buying a used APPLE computer! As an example lets say you’ve seen an ad online for a Macbook Pro A1278 (I’m currently working on one as I type this) and you’ve no idea how old it is or whats inside it? This link will take you to the site where you can then look at all the models that come under the A1278 model number. From there you can suss out which is the one your looking at and then know what your buying.

OSX Support

Microsoft shut down support for XP, VISTA, 7, 8.1 over time and thats exactly what APPLE do but they do it in stages and by year/age not OS. This is why you need to know everything about the computer prior to buying one.

Most importantly you need to know which OSX your old Mac can update/upgrade too as the older the computer is, the less the chance is of it being usable on todays internet as APPLE shut off older OSX’s to force us to buy newer models which is understandable but for the novice user it can be a waste of time and money!

The computer I’m working on (A1278) is a Macbook Pro mid 2012 and the newest OSX it can update too is OSX Catalina which currently lies 2nd to Big Sur, their latest offering. What this means is it’s able to be used on the internet securely until OSX Catalina is unsupported and APPLE give the dates for this openly. By me updating the Macbook to OSX Catalina I’ve ensured the computer can be used for at least 5 more years and THAT is the crux of this page and information.

Any computer older than 2011 will update to OSX High Sierra but you’ll only be able to use it safely until they shut down support and browser programs like Google Chrome won’t work (flash players being removed and left behind). This information here is THE single most important thing I can give you and its greatly overlooked by end users/buyers of older APPLE computers so please be careful!


Ultimately if your looking to buy a used APPLE computer I would not buy anything older than 4-5 years old at a push and that means paying a lot of money as you know. For one the hard drive (HDD) might fail due to usage over time (wear and tear), secondly the Logic Board (motherboard) could fail at any time and many other known issues I could list here but this is just a heads up for those wanting an APPLE computer on the cheap. Also, the OSX might not work on todays internet so you MUST know which one is on it and whether its upgradable or not? It’s also a good idea to look on APPLE’s site for ‘recalls’ as they have a lot of known hardware problems with batteries, chargers and the like. Check these prior to buying anything!

If your serious about computer reliability and security I can personally recommend APPLE as 99% of my business over the years has come from Microsofts ‘Windows’ OS and I’ve rarely had to work on APPLE computers but when I do it can be a hard process with a lot of APPLE’s “secrects” coming into play via certain keyboard options/presses and a lot more I won’t go into but as we all know its all about money!

If you want an APPLE computer I sincerely hope you save to buy a new one or as new as possible and if you go for an older one then expect problems and THAT is probably why you’re reading this now! So give me a ring if you need me 07821055566 or 01914262053

32 Hurworth Avenue | Harton | South Shields | Tyne and Wear | NE347SG | 07821055566