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An Error Occurred While Updating macOS: How To Fix & Avoid Data Loss

An Error Occurred While Updating macOS: How To Fix & Avoid Data Loss

If you see an error while updating the macOS, there are a few things you can try to fix it. First, if the message recommends a solution, such as re-downloading the installer and trying again, do it. If that doesn’t work, then you can try other solutions.

Quick tips to fix a macOS updating error 

  • Restart your computer and try again.  
  • Make sure you have a stable internet connection. 
  • Check for any macOS updates that may be available. 

Fixin An Error Occurred While Updating macOS

Most solutions can preserve your data. Yet, it is always good to be reassured of your data safety. Therefore, make sure you have your data backed up before proceeding.

Solution #1. Try installing in Safe Mode

Try to install the macOS while your computer is starting in safe mode. To do it you have to follow different steps depending on whether your Mac is using Apple silicon or Intel processor.

Protip: You can check if your Mac computer has an Apple silicon or Intel processor by going to Apple menu > About this Mac. If you see an item labeled ‘Chip’, then your Mac uses Apple silicon.

Installing macOS in Safe Mode

Apple silicon 

Step 1. Turn on your Mac and continue to press and hold the power button until you see the startup options window.

Step 2. Select the disk you want to boot from.

Step 3. Press and hold the Shift key while clicking “Continue in Safe Mode.”

Updated the macOS in safe mode

Step 4. Log in to your Mac. 

Intel processor

Step 1. Turn on your Mac and immediately press and hold the Shift key until the login window appears.

safe boot macOS

Step 2. Log in to your Mac. 

Step 3. On the login window, you should see Safe Boot in the upper-right corner of the window.

Now that your Mac is in safe mode, launch the Mac App Store. Then you can download and install the newest macOS update.

Solution #2. Check for any other software updates

Check if there are other updates available and install them. You can remove the download and then access a different update origin.

find macOS updates on different sources

For example, if you get it from the Mac App Store, you can now try to get the update from the Apple website. 

Then you can install the update from the new download and see if it fixes the error.

Solution #3. Use macOS Recovery

Install the macOS update while your Mac is started up from macOS Recovery. This gives you the latest version of the macOS or the most recently installed. The process differs depending on whether your Mac uses Apple silicon or Intel processor.

Apple silicon

Step 1. Turn on your Mac and continue to press and hold the power button.

Step 2. Once you see the startup options window, you will click on Options. Then click Continue and follow the on-screen instructions.

Intel processor

Step 1. Turn on your Mac and press and hold Command (⌘)-R until you see an Apple logo.

Step 2. Select the user and click Next.

Step 3. On the utility window in macOS Recovery, select Reinstall macOS and follow the on-screen instructions. 

Solution #4. Contact Apple-authorized Support for help

Apple Support is always an option to regain access to your computer. Still, if you have important data saved on your Mac, we recommend you reach out to SalvageData experts who are Apple-authorized data recovery providers and can provide a free evaluation. 

Summary: Fixing “error occurred while updating macOS” is simple and quick. Avoid any data loss by following the steps and contact a professional if you can’t fix the update installation on your own.

Reasons why an error occurred while updating macOS

Reason #1. If your Mac isn’t compatible with the latest macOS, you might still be able to upgrade to an earlier macOS.

Reason #2. You can’t install macOS on a volume used by FileVault, Time Machine backups, or the startup disk. 

Reason #3. If you have a more recent version of macOS Catalina installed, you can’t downgrade to an earlier version of macOS. 

Reason #4. An error occurred while preparing the installation. Here, you can try running this application again. 

Reason #5. The macOS installer couldn’t be verified. It may have been corrupted or tampered with during downloading. 

Regardless of the reason for this error, your priority should be to protect your data. Financial registers, documents, and family photos must be protected.

If you can’t fix the error that occurred while updating macOS, or if you ended up losing your files during the process, you can contact SalvageData. Our experts have extensive macOS recovery experience and we are officially registered as an Apple Authorized Service Provider and Independent Repair Provider.