OS X 10.10 Yosemite - Everything you need to know!

Introduced and released in 2014, the Mac operating system OS X 10.10 Yosemite is the second to be named after a place in California instead of a big cat. The name comes from a national park in the US state of California, and that's also where the default desktop background is taken from. Apple continued to provide updates for OS X 2017 Yosemite until 10.10 – and of course some new features for the launch. The user interface was modernized, there were innovations for the integrated apps, and last but not least, "Continuity" or "Integration" in German was introduced as a completely new function. 

What's new in OS X 10.10 Yosemite?

With OS X 10.10 Yosemite on the Apple Mac, the entire surface of the system was modernized. This was explained at WWDC14 Keynote as the next step in the evolution of design - away from aqua and towards new, flat and partly transparent "materials". This was e.g. This is explained, for example, using the Finder, whose upper window border with the toolbar and the folder name displayed the folder contents as a blurred background when scrolling. The left sidebar with the location and tag overview, on the other hand, showed what was hidden behind the Finder window in a blurry way. Is that familiar to you? Well, the design is used quite similarly to this day, there hasn't been too much innovation in this area since Yosemite.

Ditto for the semi-transparent dock. This too has only been minimally adjusted since then. Most notably, the app icons and their format have changed since then, but not the general design. The semi-transparent sidebar has also been carried over to the Messages app and similar programs. It was also important for the innovations for the general system design that the same, easy-to-read font is used throughout. For menus, a dark mode was introduced for the first time. But this did not have the scope of the dark mode by a long shot macOS 10.14 Mojave. It was built into Yosemite primarily for "professionals" who wanted to focus on the active window without being distracted by the menus.

There were also innovations in OS X 10.10 Yosemite for the notification center, which can be called up on the right-hand edge of the Mac display. Not only was the dark mode adopted for it, but the "Today" tab was also added. This didn't show the latest notifications, but the current date, upcoming appointments, other calendar entries for the day, reminders, the weather forecast, selected world clock displays and so on. Back then, widgets were an add-on for this area of ​​the system, today it is realized exclusively via these individual info tiles. Other notable innovations related to the Spotlight search, which has been enhanced with a larger display and web search results.

A new synchronization was introduced for iCloud Drive, which did not only refer to Apple apps, the documents created in them and correspondingly sorted folders in the cloud. Starting with OS X 10.10 Yosemite, third-party apps could also be used to sync documents between Macs and Apple mobile devices (iPhone and iPad). And no special folders were needed for that. MailDrop was introduced for large e-mail attachments up to 5 GB, so that the attachments are not rejected by the receiving mail server, but shared via iCloud. But there were also updates under the hood, such as HTML5 in Safari, continuity / integration and handoff for cross-device work, calls via paired iPhones, and so on.

More information about OS X 10.10 Yosemite for the Apple Mac:

These Mac models are compatible with OS X Yosemite

The basic requirements for installing OS X 10.10 were at least 2 GB of RAM, more than 8 GB of free hard disk space and OS X 10.6.8 or later as the previously installed system. However, this only includes the basic system and not all of the newly introduced functions. So while the system still ran on some 2008 devices, the following minimum requirements were listed for Handoff, Instant Hotspot, and similar features:

  • MacBook Air (2012 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro (2012 or newer)
  • iMac (2012 or newer)
  • Mac mini (2012 or newer)
  • Mac Pro (Late 2013)

functions such as AirDrop between two Macs are also compatible with older models:

  • MacBook Pro (Late 2008 or newer)
  • MacBook Air (Late 2010 or newer)
  • MacBook (Late 2008 or newer)
  • iMac (Early 2009 or newer)
  • Mac mini (mid 2010 or later)
  • Mac Pro (Early 2009 with AirPort Extreme Card or Mid 2010 or newer)

You can find more information and technical details about OS X 10.10 Yosemite and the compatible Mac models in the official data sheet by Apple. The minimum requirements for the iOS devices that can be used with the cross-platform functions are also listed there.

Download OS X Yosemite and create a boot stick

You can download OS X Yosemite as a 5,72GB dmg file here at Apple download. This can be opened directly on the Mac on which the system is to be installed. Furthermore, the pkg file can be extracted and/or an installer can be created. We have already explained in other posts how you can use it to create a boot stick for installing a system on the Apple Mac using a USB stick. Here is a selection of articles that may help you:

Buy Apple OS X 10.10 Yosemite Boot Stick

If you have to buy a new USB stick anyway to create the bootable storage medium with OS X Yosemite, then the more convenient alternative would be to order a ready-made USB boot stick. One of these is currently available from Amazon for 16,99 euros, and even with Prime shipping. Here you come to the offer including the detailed product description and the reviews.

DS Systems Installation Boot Stick Compatible with OS X 10.10 Yosemite macOS Bootable Bootable...
  • Comes with detailed but easy to understand step-by-step instructions. Completely in German.
  • With this DS Systems USB (Type-A) boot stick it is possible to carry out a complete new installation on, for example, a...
  • Always check the system requirements beforehand. If in doubt, you can check compatibility...

Download OS X Yosemite Wallpaper - Desktop Background in 5K and 6K

The various Mac operating systems are not only recognizable by their version number and their name, but also by their default desktop background during use. The system OS X 10.10 Yosemite was z. B. named after the US National Park of the same name. Correspondingly, the wallpaper shows a rock elevation from just this. In the following systems, this was repeated several times by Apple, just in different regions or individual locations. If you want to use the high-resolution Yosemite wallpaper on a new Mac or on a PC, it's very easy.

At 512pixels you will find all standard backgrounds from Mac OS X 10.0 Cheetah and 10.1 Puma. However, these are not pixelated screenshots of old systems, but 5K and 6K versions that look great even on the very latest high-resolution displays. Up to High Sierra there is only one image each, from Mojave onwards there is one image for the light mode and one for the dark mode. Away macOS 11 BigSur there are four images, since the transition to the new systems with photos and digitally designed graphics was heralded there. You can find the Mac wallpaper collection by 512pixels with this link.

OS X Yosemite manuals and guides

Unfortunately, we don't have that many instructions, guides and help for older systems in stock here in the blog. For more modern Mac systems, however, you will find a whole lot of troubleshooting, tips and tricks. If you want to find out everything about retro systems and try them out down to the smallest detail, then Amazon, for example, has the right offers. A few manuals are still available.

My Mac manual compact: Get to know the functions of OS X 10.10 Yosemite quickly and easily
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In the Sir Apfelot Blog you will find advice, instructions and reviews on Apple products such as the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, AirPods, iMac, Mac Pro, Mac Mini and Mac Studio.