El Capitan Public Beta okay to join? [A: Not recommended yet for production Macs]

Any known problems with joining the public beta for El Capitan? I’d love to try it out but need to avoid if its going to break OF?

Best practice is to install the beta on a separate partition from your main OS. As far as I have heard Omnifocus is fine in EC, but you’re always better running beta OSs in their own partition so you have easy access to a stable OS. With betas, some things are broken for some people and not others, so you can never be sure based on anecdotes. Having a stable OS on a separate partition means if OF (or any number of other potentially mission critical applications) is broken in El Capitan, you’ve got an immediate fallback.


Thanks Scott!

It’s breaks a LOT of applications. Installing it on a production machine is not remotely a good idea.

We’re still testing our applications for compatibility with El Capitan and iOS 9, so it’s possible that you may be the first to encounter previously unknown compatibility issues or bugs. Please send us an email if you do run into any issues!

More information about this can be found here:

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Uh oh! Just downloaded El Capitan beta and my OF2 is refusing to open. Keeps bouncing on dock but just refuses to open up and in the end, I get a “application not responding” message.

I know I should have installed the new OSX on a partition but it was just too much trouble. Everything else is working though so I don’t understand what the problem with OF2 is. Can anyone help?

There are always a lot of changes “under the hood” with new OSs that can cause incompatibilities and other issues for otherwise stable programs like OmniFocus for reasons that are largely invisible to the user. The reality is that beta operating systems frequently break perfectly functioning software. These can be easy to fix, they can be hard to fix. Hard to say. Either way, because we are a good few months away from the official release of El Capitan, I imagine OmniGroup will be focusing on existing bugs for currently-released software. I’m sure Omni knows what the issue is and has it in their queue so that when El Cap is released OmniFocus functions fine. Until El Cap is released though, don’t count on developers to support it.

There are a couple of suggestions:

  1. If you have a time machine backup, you can erase your hard drive, reinstall the current Yosemite version, and recover your files from your backup (using Migration Assistant or manually). This is a bit time consuming, but it should work reasonably well.
  2. If you have a clone, you can recover your functioning Yosemite clone.
  3. It is possible a future release of El Capitan or OmniFocus will “un-break” OF functionality, but this could be weeks or months (since OmniGroup has no obligation to release support for El Capitan until it is publicly released, and likely can’t release a fully supporting version through the MAS until El Cap is released either, and I don’t think OmniGroup will put their direct and MAS releases out of sync like that). So you could wait for that to occur, but again, weeks or months without OF is likely not ideal.

Well, it must have resolved itself as OF2 is now up and running in El Capitan. Fingers crossed that it would start again tomorrow morning when I power up. Thank you @scottisloud for your suggestions - hopefully I won’t have to resort to them just yet. :)

Maybe I’ve just been around the block too many times, but if it’s too much trouble to install a beta OS on a separate partition, then maybe folks should just wait until the GA release (or a few months afterwards).


Since we’re still in the process of testing our applications for compatibility with the newest operating systems—OS X El Capitan (version 10.11) and iOS 9— bugs like this may come up! Running prerelease builds of the newer operating systems means you may be the first to run into unknown compatibility issues. If you do run into any trouble, please feel free to shoot us an email letting us know what issues you’re seeing! We hope to have them all ironed out by the time the new operating systems officially ship.


Oh I agree! I’d never go “all in” on a beta operating system! I like to tinker but I don’t like to take chances with my data!

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