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I just fixed my Macbook Pro (late 2009) by downgrading it to Snow Leopard OS. But I do want to upgrade it, since my Mac can take a newer version and work just fine. My specs are:

  • Model Identifier: MacBook6,1
  • Processor Name: Intel Core 2 Duo
  • Processor Speed: 2.26 GHz
  • Number Of Processors: 1
  • Total Number Of Cores: 2
  • L2 Cache: 3 MB
  • Memory: 4 GB
  • Bus Speed: 1.07 GHz

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According to Everymac the last OS that machine is capable of running is 10.11 El Capitan.

As to which OS you choose to put on it, that will be dictated by which you have previously 'purchased' from the App Store. You can only download OS versions that are in your purchase history, with the exception of the latest OS - in your case El Capitan, for which there is an exception made for machines unable to run the current OS, Sierra.

If you choose any intermediate OS, you would need to find a friend who has that installer.

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  • See also support.apple.com/en-us/HT211683
    – lhf
    Jul 9, 2021 at 11:30
  • Indeed - that page didn't exist in 2017. They've also recently released 10.6 & 10.7 as 'freeware' rather than the previous $£€ 20.
    – Tetsujin
    Jul 9, 2021 at 11:34

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