How to Downgrade from macOS High Sierra to macOS Sierra

Apple Announces macOS 'High Sierra' and MacBook Pro Upgrades
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Apple unveiled the next version of Mac operating system at WWDC 2017. Called macOS High Sierra, this new OS comes packed with lots of new changes and improvements, such as a new file system called APFS, faster and smarter Siri, Metal 2 technology, new features for the Photos app, and much more.

While the beta version of macOS High Sierra is already available to registered developers, users who install it may come across bugs and stability issues, such as lags, unexpected freezes, and random reboots. If you’ve been facing issues after installing macOS High Sierra, then you should probably downgrade back to macOS Sierra to fix the problems.

The downgrade process is quite easy. You’ll first erase macOS High Sierra from your Mac, and then re-install macOS Sierra. In this tutorial, we’ll take you through the steps of downgrading your Mac from macOS High Sierra to macOS Sierra.

Before proceeding, take note of the following important points:

  • Downgrading your Mac will wipe all your important files and data, such as photos, documents, videos, etc. Therefore, make sure that you take a complete backup of your Mac using Time Machine (System Preferences > Time Machine), or you could go with the manual approach of saving your important files to an external drive.
  • Ensure that your Mac has enough battery to complete the downgrade process. You should plug it to the charger until the downgrade is completed.
  • Downgrading and restoring from a backup will take some time depending on the amount of data to be restored. Stay patient and do not cause interruptions during the process.

How to Erase macOS High Sierra

Step 1: The first step is to restart your Mac. To do so, click on the Apple icon in the menu bar and choose Restart.

Step 2: While your Mac is restarting, press and hold the Cmd+R keys. This opens the OS X Utilities screen.

Step 3: Click on Disk Utility, and then press Continue.

Step 4: Select your Startup Disk from the sidebar. It may be called ‘macOS High Sierra Beta’.

Step 5: Now click on Erase. Enter a name for the file to be removed, such as ‘macOS High Sierra’.

Step 6: From the Format dropdown list, choose Mac OS Extended (Journaled), and then click on Erase.

Once you’ve erased macOS High Sierra, exit Disk Utility and go back to the OS X Utilities screen. Now read the next section for re-installing macOS Sierra.

How to Re-install macOS Sierra

Step 1: From the OS X Utilities window, click on Reinstall OS X.

Step 2: Click Continue.

Step 3: Accept the terms & conditions, and follow the on-screen instructions.

Your Mac will begin reinstalling macOS Sierra. Once the process is completed, it will restart and you should be downgraded back to macOS High Sierra.

How to Restore from Time Machine Backup

Once you’ve re-installed macOS High Sierra, you can get back all your files and data by restoring from the most recent Time Machine backup.

Step 1: Connect the hard drive where your Time Machine backup is stored.

Step 2: Restart your Mac by clicking on the Apple logo in the menu bar and choosing Restart.

Step 3: While your Mac is restarting, hold down the Cmd+R keys.

Step 4: The OS X Utilities screen is displayed. Choose Restore from Time Machine Backup and click Continue.

Step 5: Select the source where your Time Machine backup is stored, such as the connected hard drive, and then click on Continue.

Step 6: A list of all the available Time Machine backups will be displayed. Select the most recent backup.

Now your Mac will restore from the selected Time Machine backup. The process can take a while depending on the size of the backup. So stay patient and let the process complete. Once the restore is done, your Mac will restart and you should be back on macOS Sierra with all your saved files and data.

This is how you can downgrade from macOS High Sierra to macOS Sierra without losing your important files and data. If you face any issues, let us know in the comments below.


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