A Friend Asks About Safari

Last Saturday, I attended the annual winter luncheon in Marlborough, MA for New England owners of Airstream trailers.  These get-togethers are always a good time to share food and conversation with a very congenial bunch of folks who have their eye on the calendar for the next time they can "meet on down the road" at a weekend rally.  I sat at a table with a fellow Massachusetts Airstreamer, Earl, who, in the course of the lunch banter, happened to ask if I could help him with an issue where the version of Safari on his several year old MacBook was not compatible with his online banking website.

My quick advice at the lunch table was to start by checking what version of the operating system the MacBook was running.  Unfortunately, we didn't get a chance to finish the conversation, so I'm writing this blog post in the hope that I can remotely troubleshoot his problem to a satisfactory outcome.  Here's the rest of what I would have advised Earl to do:  

1.  Go the the Apple menu, and choose "About This Mac" to see what version of the operating system is running.  If it's not the latest available ("El Capitan" or what is also known as OSX 10.11.3), Earl will want to upgrade his operating system to this version, or the latest version that can be installed on his MacBook.  At work, I am running El Capitan on a 2007 vintage Mac Pro, so he's got a good chance that his MacBook also can handle El Capitan.

2.  Updating the operating system is typically best accomplished by launching the App Store app from your dock.  Now, depending how old Earl's installed operating system is, the App Store may not be there, as the App Store wasn't released until January 2011, as part of OSX 10.6.6 "Snow Leopard".  If Earl's current operating system is older than this, he may need to manually install the latest operating system from the support section of Apple's website. 

3.  I always recommend performing a backup before doing an operating system upgrade, as this is one of those times where, if something goes wrong in the process, you could get "stuck in the middle" and not be able to easily recover your previous state of affairs.  So do a backup.  For tips on backing up, see my earlier post on this blog page about "Drobo". 

4.  With the latest operating system installed, the App Store app should appear in the dock (the round blue icon with the letter A inside) and launching it will allow you to install or update any Apple apps as well as any apps purchased through the App Store.  You will need to enter your Apple ID and password (the same one used for your iCloud account and your mobile devices if you have them) in order to download and install any updates or apps.

5.  The latest version of Safari as of the date of this posting (February 2, 2016) is version 9.0.3.  This should support any online banking website worth its salt.  

Earl (or anyone else in a similar fix), if this troubleshooting process doesn't get Safari to support your online bank site, try another browser (I'd recommend Chrome by Google).  Happy banking (or at least browsing).