To start with: it’s difficult, but it can “work”. Sort of.

The star of the show, the MacBook Pro Mid-2012, running macOS Ventura (far right)

Why do this to yourself?

Quite frankly, I didn’t feel like shelling out ~€600 for a refurbished Mac Mini just to be able to test the odd app of mine with iCloud sync. It just seems overkill. And I did have this old MBP lying around, so I thought: why not give it a try?
If all else failed, I’d still have the Mac Mini option, anyway.
And a Virtual Machine doesn’t work, because you can’t log into iCloud / Apple ID in a VM environment for some reason. It could have been so easy…

I’d done it before, too. That 2012-MBP has served me so well over the years, with 6 partitions, reaching from macOS 10.10 Yosemite to macOS 10.15 Catalina, all for testing purposes.

It really speaks to the quality and longevity of these machines. Eleven years old, and still rocking.

Installing macOS 13 Ventura on the MBPMid2012

Getting macOS Ventura (released in 2022) to run on a Mac that’s not supposed to run even macOS 11 Big Sur (released in 2020) is surprisingly easy.
Using OpenCore Legacy Patcher, it was pretty straight forward, with only one *gasp*-I-think-I-just-bricked-this-11-year-old-Mac moment that was resolved by a simple restart (a dialog appeared telling me the installation had to be aborted due to an unknown error, which had no effect at all).
There’s really only one thing that I thought could be improved (complaining on a high level here, since it’s a miracle this works at all in the first place):
You *have* to use an external drive to create the installer drive, you can’t use an internal partition. And you cannot use a partition of an external drive, you have to wipe that drive entirely.
None of my USB thumb drives were big enough (the biggest I have is 8 GB), and all my other drives have more or less important data on them, so wiping one of them was out of the question.
Thankfully, my girlfriend had a completely empty 2TB hard drive handy that she was supposed to use for backups (and never did), so I was able to use that.
Once that was out of the way, it was all just a matter of following the on-screen instructions and waiting. And waiting. It takes a while.

Running Xcode 15 on it

It runs. It compiles. It fails to attach the debugger to the app (the LLDB RPC server crashes). But the compiled app continues running. So, debugging and coding directly on the Mac is impossible.

In hindsight, I think I may have overshot with macOS 13 Ventura and perhaps should have installed macOS 12 Monterey instead with Xcode 14, but I did what I did. It’s done. I’m not doing it over. You can’t make me.

In my case, it’s just as well. All I wanted to do was to test ScreenFloat 2’s iCloud sync with another Mac. And as far as that’s concerned, it’s working perfectly.
It would have been the icing on the cake to be able to debug directly on that Mac, and commit changes back and forth, but what can you do…
I debug on my main Mac, and then commit-and-pull the new code over on the old Mac, and then re-build. It’s tedious, but I can’t really complain. Well, I can. And I am. But I shouldn’t.

Other Observations

I’m making use of the Vision framework in ScreenFloat, and that completely crashes the app on the old Mac. Apparently, there is a reason why macOS Ventura is not supported on these old Macs.

I don’t think you could use this as a machine for work, as I’d imagine you’d run into a lot of little, annoying, and big, terrifying issues. For instance, I imagine Preview would crash a lot, since it also uses the Vision framework for its OCR and whatnot.

For testing apps in development, however, it might work, depending on what it is you’re testing/developing. I had to jump through some hoops (disabling my Vision framework code) to get my app to run. Your mileage may vary.

As a no-cost alternative to a refurbished Mac Mini at ~€600, I couldn’t be more happy.
Here’s to my old, loyal MacBook Pro Mid-2012. It still has some life in it.

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One of these days, I’d like to put some of the still-in-development ScreenFloat 2’s features through its paces (for instance, and most importantly, the migration of a ScreenFloat 1 library into the new format).

So I’m starting to put together a list of heavy-duty ScreenFloat users now, so that, once I’m ready, I can send out TestFlight invitations and get some feedback and insights right away.

If you consider yourself a heavy-duty ScreenFloat user, and/or have a large-ish library of shots and collections in ScreenFloat 1, please do reach out, I’d appreciate your help.

It’s still going to be a little while as I think about what I want to test exactly, and how, but I’ll be in touch nonetheless, you can be sure of that.

Thank you!

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Yoink for Mac Usage Tip #14

The following explains how to make Yoink automatically pick up any new file added to a specified folder.
For more Usage Tips like this, click here.


Yoink 256

If you’d like Yoink for Mac to automatically pick up any new files you download or save into a specific folder, here’s how it’s done.

Automator Folder Action

Automator, an app that comes with every Mac, allows you to create Folder Actions, which are small programs that run every time files and folders are added to a folder you specify.

I’ve prepared such a Folder Action for you: Download (direct download, ~42 KB)

  • Download the action above, then unzip and double-click it. It will prompt you with this:
Screenshot of Automator Installer  13 10 2020 14 39 16

Choose the folder you’d like to attach this action to and click on Install. The action will then be moved to /Users/yourname/Library/Workflows/Applications/Folder Actions/Yoink Save Folder.workflow
If you ever wish to uninstall it, just delete that file.

  • With the Folder Action installed, whenever you download or save a file into that folder, it will be added to Yoink, like you can see in this video:
  • To create multiple of these, all you need to do is unzip again, change the filename of the Automator action, double-click it and follow the instructions above

If you’re curious about what the Folder Action actually does, it’s this:

Screenshot of Automator  13 10 2020 14 35 23

The action runs this shell script

open -a Yoink “$@" 

any time new files or folders are added to the specified folder, which instructs macOS to open the specified file with Yoink (which ultimately results in the file being added to Yoink’s list).


You can edit the shell script anytime (by right-clicking onto the Automator file and selecting Automator):

Screenshot of Finder  13 10 2020 14 54 50

which would enable you, for example, to tell the action only to add files of a certain file type, or with a certain file extension.
The following script sample shows how to make the Folder Action only add PDF files:

for str in "$@"

if [ $pathExt == 'pdf' ]
open -a Yoink "$str"

Enjoy 🙂

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Here’s an update on the state of my apps regarding macOS Big Sur and Macs with Apple Silicon.

In short: All my apps are ready for both, and the updates mentioned below will be released when macOS Big Sur is available at the latest (depending heavily on App Review and whether or not macOS Big Sur’s release is going to be the same, fun catastrophe of a surprise as iOS 14’s).

Let’s get into a little more detail.

Yoink for Mac (website | Mac App Store)

Yoink 128 2xFor Yoink – your file shelf that simplifies and improves drag and drop on your Mac –, all I had to do to make it fit nicely within Big Sur was to resolve some UI issues.
Recompiling for Apple Silicon went without further intervention on my part.

– Firstly, I updated the preferences window to the new style (which you can read more about here).

– Secondly, macOS Big Sur introduces larger insets for most (if not all) of its scrollable views, so I’ve had to make Yoink’s window a little wider to make everything fit nicely again, while maintaining the new inset and selection look.

– Last but not least, I asked Alex Käßner to update Yoink’s icon, and he certainly delivered (see above).

ScreenFloat (website | Mac App Store)

ScreenFloat for Mac App Icon

For ScreenFloat – which lets you create floating screenshots to keep almost anything visible in whatever app, space or window you are – my priority was to get it running natively on Apple Silicon and fix the most glaring UI issues on Big Sur (like the preferences window, again).
A bigger update is in the works, so my attention goes into that, but I wanted to make sure that – until the big update drops – it’ll run as efficiently and well as it can.

flickery (website | Mac App Store)

flickery for Mac App Icon

flickery – a full-featured client for flickr – will run natively on Apple Silicon and received, like ScreenFloat above and the apps below, a minor face-lift of its preferences window.
I’ve also had to remove QTKit (which I mostly did with a previous update of the app for macOS Catalina – but some more references I had kept around came up as an error in Xcode, so those had to go as well).
It was used to allow the user to edit videos before uploading them. It’s gone for the time being, but there are plenty of free tools (including QuickTime Player) that can step up here for the user in the meantime.

Transloader for Mac (website | Mac App Store | iOS App Store)

Transloader for Mac App Icon

Transloader – which lets you start downloads on your Mac remotely from your iOS device – also will receive a minor update. I had to remove some shadows from texts so it would look nicer in Dark Mode (and who does shadows nowadays anymore, anyways…).
I’ve also had to update its use of CloudKit, because some APIs were deprecated and replaced (in particular, I was using CKSubscription instead of the newer CKQuerySubscription). In the end, it was easy enough.
Transloader 3.0 is still in the works (some bits of progress you can read about here, here and here), so, like with ScreenFloat, I wanted to make sure it runs on macOS Big Sur (and natively on Apple Silicon) until the bigger update is available.

Glimpses (website | Mac App Store)

Glimpses for Mac App Icon

Glimpses – an app that lets you effortlessly create still motion videos – will receive a more substantial update.
After I fixed a glaring UI issue where the progress bar that Glimpses shows for the render progress was almost invisible, I gave the video creation algorithm an overhaul, which makes it up to 4x faster than before, which I’m really happy with. Multi-threading ftw! The app, too, will run natively on Apple Silicon.

SiriMote (free, website)

SiriMote for Mac App Icon

SiriMote didn’t require any UI fixes for Big Sur, but v1.3.9 which I recently released fixes a couple of connectivity issues – and already runs natively on Apple Silicon!
The app allows you to control your Mac and apps with your Apple TV Siri Remote.

I’m glad I was able to make all my apps ready for macOS Big Sur, and am very curious where things are going with Apple Silicon!

– Matthias
mail | website | twitter | instagram | facebook

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