MacOS Catelina 64 bit support?

Many of the interpreters that are available for Mac (Zoom for example) are not compatible with the next version of MacOS.

Are there any plans to update the various 'terps for Mac? Is there a work-around in the mean time which allows me to use the current systems on Catelina?

There was quite a bit of effort put into making Frotz simple to compile and run on MacOS. Do you have access to a Catalina machine? I’d love to get a beta-test report for Frotz on it.

I am on the fence with upgrading. I don’t want to upgrade before I know what stuff I’ll lose access to.

You may know this already, but if you go to About This Mac (from your Apple logo icon), click “System Report”, then select “Software -> Applications” from the list on the left, a table will show up that has a column at the end (“64-bit”) with a Yes or a No for each application on your Mac.

A “No” in that column means whatever that application is, it is very likely to not work under Catalina. It’s slightly more complicated because some apps might be 64-bit but still be using 32-bit licensing apps and/or installers.


Yes, that’s how I found out about the problem. It’s great you posted this, because other Mac users should check this screen as well before upgrading to Catalina.

There is no work-around for running old (32-bit) apps on Catalina. If you need one, put off upgrading.

Zoom hasn’t really been compatible with current MacOS for years. Lectrote is up to date. Gargoyle and Spatterlight have recent releases, although you have to dig around for them.

Inform 7 is a problem. The System Report page lists it as 64-bit, but actually it has 32-bit components; the IDE runs but compiles will fail. I have been in contact with Graham about this, and he intends to release a rebuilt version (of the current version of I7). But I haven’t gotten a release date for that.

Announcement about I7:

Instead, a fully 64-bit version of the current Inform will be available for download here in the next few days, and shortly after that on the Mac App Store.


There is no comfortable way to use 32bit, but there is also the virtualization way. If you havn‘t upgraded to Catalina yet, but want to try Catalina, you can install it in one of the popular virtualizers. This might even provide some kind of integration into your host system, so you can launch the required apps directly in your host system. This of course can also be done the other way around. If you are on Catalina yet, you can still officially download Mojave from the Apple site and virtualize it.
You could also dual-boot. If you have an APFS drive, you even don‘t need to repartition, but instead use an APFS container.
Well, only workarounds, there is no nice solution. Catalina invalidates of lot of older software and hardware. I still have almost 200 32bit apps on my system. Many of those will probably never get an update (drivers, emulators, old games,…)

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