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I have a Macbook Pro. It is about 3 years old. I just did a factory reset, because it was bugging out.

I am trying to install Xcode, but it says I need to have macOS 10.15 "Catalina". I have version 10.12 "Sierra", and I see no option to upgrade to 10.15. (I just updated, and there are no more updates available.)

How do I get Xcode installed? Is there an older version I can use? Is there a way to update to macOS 10.15?

Not sure what I am missing here...

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You are asked to install macOS 10.15 Catalina because macOS 10.15.4 is the minimum required version of macOS for running Xcode 12.2 which in turn the current latest version of Xcode available on the App Store.

The latest version of macOS Catalina is 10.15.7 which can be downloaded and subsequently installed via the Mac App Store by using this link:

There's a newer version of macOS, macOS Big Sur which was recently released by Apple and the same can be downloaded from the Mac App Store by using this link:

Most Macs from 2013 and later support running macOS Big Sur, so your Mac should definitely be supported if you bought it brand new 3 years ago.

If you are looking to run an older version of Xcode, macOS Sierra 10.12 would support running Xcode 8.3.3 and if you have the latest point release of macOS Sierra installed, i.e. 10.12.6, the latest version you can install is Xcode 9.2.

Mac App Store makes available the current latest public version of Xcode. If you are looking to download an older version, you can do so from Apple Developer Downloads website.

Refer to the Xcode - Version Comparison Table to determine the supported Xcode version information)

Each version of Xcode comes built in with a specific version of SDKs for macOS, iOS, watchOS and tvOS. If you are looking for SDK targeting specific version of any of the OS, refer to the Version Comparison Table linked above to determine the appropriate version of Xcode to use.

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  • Trying to install Big Sur just gives me a failure to connect to the App Store error. But I was able to install Catalina. Thank you!!
    – Evorlor
    Nov 24 '20 at 15:38
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    @Evorlor Good. The App Store error should be a temporary occurrence. If you wish to install macOS Big Sur, you can try again after some time. The current latest release of macOS Catalina 10.15.7 should run the latest version of Xcode just fine.
    – Nimesh Neema
    Nov 24 '20 at 15:40
  • Once I updated to Catalina using your link, it then prompted me to update to Big Sur :)
    – Evorlor
    Nov 24 '20 at 16:26
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Every Mac from about three years ago is able to run the newest macOS Big Sur (scroll to the bottom to see compatibility list).

With your version of macOS installed, macOS upgrades can be retrieved from the AppStore.

If you want to install a different version than the newest (currently Big Sur) you would need to get the installer elsewhere, e.g. here on AskDifferent. The mentioned AskDifferent thread also covers a lot more about this topic and will most likely clarify most questions.

By updating your version of macOS you should then be able to download Xcode.

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  • The OP is looking for an older version of Xcode, not an older version of macOS.
    – nohillside
    Nov 24 '20 at 15:17
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    I am aware of that, I was trying to give him more options, especially since macOS Big Sur is such a new release and may cause issues in general or with other software he/she might be using.
    – X_841
    Nov 24 '20 at 15:20

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