I am trying to update macOS from Yosemite (10.10) to Catalina 10.15.) on my mac book pro 2015, I downloaded the installer from the app store on my mac but every time I click continue to set up the installation I get this error message that reads "downloading installer information to the target volume failed"

I tried many solutions and searched everywhere but no solutions so far, I tried to use a patcher that also didn't work. I tried to install it from the terminal but that also didn't work.

What could be the cause of this?

is there a way to fix this?

  • Have you read this Apple Support Document about upgrading to Catalina? There are Mac hardware compatibility requirements. You don't mention the model of Mac you're using so, its hard to help at this point.
    – IconDaemon
    Commented Sep 25, 2020 at 12:47
  • i am compatible, i am using mac book pro 2015 @IconDaemon
    – mike
    Commented Sep 25, 2020 at 12:52
  • @IconDaemon and yes i read that document it didnt help very much. i am compatible and everything, what do i do now?
    – mike
    Commented Sep 25, 2020 at 12:54
  • 1
    You are making a very large leap upgrading from Yosemite as you are skipping El Capitan, Sierra, High Sierra, and Mojave to Catalina. You may have to upgrade to say Sierra first then upgrade to Catalina. Also, I would definitely make sure you are not encrypted before you attempt upgrading. Turn off FileVault. Make a backup. Here's the link to Sierra - updates-http.cdn-apple.com/2019/cert/… Commented Sep 25, 2020 at 12:57
  • @JamesBrickley ok i will try what you suggested, thank you
    – mike
    Commented Sep 25, 2020 at 13:00

2 Answers 2


It is recommended to not make such a large leap in operating system versions, skipping more than two macOS releases is inherently dangerous. I sincerely doubt it receives the same kind of testing that an incremental upgrade would receive. Ideally, it would be recommended to backup your data and perform a clean installation of Catalina if you can create a bootable macOS flash drive possibly with another Mac.

However you can try upgrading to an intermediate version such as Sierra or High Sierra then upgrade that to Catalina. A great deal has changed and the big one is the change from JHFS+ filesystem to the new APFS filesystem.

If your disk is encrypted you need to turn off FileVault or you are going to be at far greater risk of a major problem.

Here are the Apple Support pages where you can download various versions of macOS using special links. The downloads are hidden from the App Store via search or are distributed from backend CDN Apple storage. For High Sierra+ the downloads will be made from the App Store but older releases will come from a CDN (Content Distribution Network).

https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT208202 - Sierra This will download an InstallOS.pkg that creates the /Applications/Install macOS Sierra installer which needs to be run manually after the InstallOS.pkg.

https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT208969 - High Sierra

https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT210190 - Mojave

https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201475 - Catalina

Instructions on how to make a bootable installation for everything but Sierra https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201372

El Capitan can be rather difficult to get working, your mileage may vary. I've found it to be far easier to go with Sierra or High Sierra.

  • i did everything you suggested i upgraded until Mojave, but still when i try to update to catalina from the system itself it gives me the same error. whats the issue here?
    – mike
    Commented Sep 26, 2020 at 7:39
  • What MacBook Pro model do you have? Apple -> Help -> About this Mac. Commented Sep 26, 2020 at 12:40
  • im able to download catalina now but it keeps stopping half way through with the error "the request timed out , an error ocurred while downloading the update"
    – mike
    Commented Sep 27, 2020 at 5:32




  • Yo nice - it worked. It took a while to get past the "Deleting" stage but it got there eventually. (This was all in recovery mode. Formatting your disk of course erases everything, so not sure this is helpful in wanting to simply upgrade the OS while preserving your files.)
    – velkoon
    Commented Jul 21, 2022 at 4:46

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