You might want to hold off on upgrading macOS to Big Sur if you have an older MacBook Pro
Yea, this is not good.
If you have an older MacBook Pro, you’ll probably want to hold off trying to upgrade to Big Sur for the time being. That’s because owners of late 2013 and mid-2014 MacBook Pro models reported that the update had bricked their machines.
The issue? At some point during the install process, their MacBook Pro got stuck displaying a blank screen, rendering the device useless. Nothing they tried seemed to fix the issue. From key combinations to clearing NVRAM, SMC, safe mode, and even internet recovery does nothing to help.
— Ben Hendricks (@benhendricks) November 15, 2020
Most of the users reporting issues are using late 2013 or mid-2014 MacBook Pro models, so if you have one of those, hold off on updating for now. We don’t have a clear picture of just how many machines are affected or which hardware configurations cause the issue. These are the oldest MacBook models on the official compatibility list for Big Sur.
Apple’s operating system updates usually go fairly smoothly. However, we’ve seen older models of iPhones have issues with newer versions of iOS, so perhaps Apple is trying to support devices that really aren’t up to the new operating systems’ strain.
Some of the users complaining have been asked by Apple to send their MacBook in for repair, and also that the Apple Engineering team is aware now of the issue, so we can only hope that a fix is coming.
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