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macOS 10.15.5 Problems: 5 Things to Know

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Apple fixed a number of issues with the latest update, but there are still a number of macOS 10.15.5 problems that you need to be aware of.

Some of the macOS Catalina problems carry over from older releases, while others are new to macOS 10.15.5, and at least one is a major issue that you should pay attention to if you rely on bootable backups.

In this guide to macOS Catalina problems, we help you understand the current state of macOS 10.15.5 on new and old Macs. When possible we show you where to find fixes and in some cases explicit instructions, not to update.

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Read: How to Fix macOS Catalina Problems

macOS 10.15.5 Problems

There are already some macOS 10.15.5 problems that are annoying users, and potentially leaving you in a bad spot.

The biggest known issue is that macOS 10.15.5 breaks creating new bootable backups. Carbon Copy Cloner shares a full breakdown of what is broken, and how you can work around this.

The good news is that existing backups are unaffected or on your data. This is only on the “initial creation of a bootable backup.” This impacts the APFS filesystem and was known on the beta of macOS 10.15.5.

You can work around this and learn more at Carbon Copy Cloner.

Where to Find Feedback

You can find feedback on the macOS Catalina update to get help from other users and to learn about what is going on. The macOS 1015.4 update is old enough that you can get feedback from forums and you can read our list of reasons to install macOS Catalina and reasons to wait.

We recommend looking at macOS Catalina problems on YouTube, on the Apple Discussion Forums, and on Twitter as well as the MacRumors forums. A little prep and research can help dramatically.

How to Fix macOS Catalina Problems

While Apple will need to fix some of the macOS Catalina problems, you can solve some issues on your own. We have a full guide on how to fix macOS Catalina problems, which will help you solve most issues on your own.

If you cannot download or install macOS Catalina, try restarting the download, restarting your Mac, and switching to a wired connection. If your device feels sluggish after the update, you may need to simply wait for the background processes to finish. Give it a day or two.

In cases where battery life takes a hit, the background processes could be a culprit, but you can use this guide to fix bad macOS Catalina battery life.

If you can’t use WiFi, Bluetooth or you experience sound problems, try restarting your Mac or turning WiFi or Bluetooth off and then back on. You can also reach out to Apple Support via Twitter or via Apple’s website.

If you still can’t fix the problem, you may need to contact Apple for help.

macOS Catalina Downgrade Options

You can downgrade from macOS Catalina to macOS Mojave.

You can downgrade from macOS Catalina to macOS Mojave.

It is possible to downgrade from macOS Catalina to macOS Mojave. There is no time limit and this is very easy if you have a good backup for your Mac. To do this, you just need to start your Mac in safe mode and choose Restore from Time Machine Backup.

If you need to get back to macOS 10.15.4, you can restore to a time machine backup that you made just before upgrading. This can help you solve sleep issues and file transfer issues.

This will take some time, so it’s not to be done lightly, but if you are no longer able to use your Mac like you need to, it could be the best option until Apple releases an update for the new macOS 10.15.6 version.

What’s Next for macOS?

You can expect to see Apple release additional maintenance updates through the rest of the year. Apple will show off macOS 10.16 at WWDC in June, which will likely arrive in September or October.

7 Reasons Not to Install macOS Catalina & 14 Reasons to Install macOS 10.15.5 Today

Install for macOS 10.15.4 Fixes and Security Updates

Install for macOS 10.15.4 Fixes and Security Updates

If you are on macOS Mojave or an older version of macOS 10.15, you should install this update to get the latest security fixes and new features that come with macOS. These include security updates that help keep your data safe and updates that patch bugs and other macOS Catalina problems.

The macOS 10.15.5 update includes the following fixes;

Battery Health Management
- Battery health management to help maximize battery lifespan for Mac notebooks
- Energy Saver preference pane now displays battery condition and recommends if the battery needs to be serviced
- Option to disable battery health management
- For more information, please visit https://support.apple.com/kb/HT211094

‌FaceTime‌ Prominence Preference
- Option to control automatic prominence on Group ‌FaceTime‌ calls so video tiles do not change size when a participant speaks

Calibration Fine-Tuning for Pro Display XDR
- Controls to fine-tune the built-in calibration of your Pro Display XDR by adjusting the white point and luminance for a precise match to your own display calibration target

This update also includes bug fixes and other improvements.
- Fixes an issue that may prevent Reminders from sending notifications for recurring reminders
- Addresses an issue that may prevent password entry on the login screen
- Fixes an issue where System Preferences would continue to show a notification badge even after installing an update
- Resolves an issue where the built-in camera may not be detected when trying to use it after using a video conferencing app
- Addresses an issue for Mac computers with the Apple T2 Security Chip where internal speakers may not appear as a sound output device in Sound preferences
- Fixes a stability issue with uploading and downloading media files from iCloud Photo Library while your Mac is asleep
- Resolves a stability issue when transferring large amounts of data to RAID volumes
- Fixes an issue where the Reduce Motion Accessibility preference did not reduce the speed of animations in a ‌FaceTime‌ group call


We will also see a list of security updates in this, which are disclosed on this security page.

The macOS 10.15.5 supplemental update includes;

  • Impact: An application may be able to execute arbitrary code with kernel privileges
  • Description: A memory consumption issue was addressed with improved memory handling.
  • CVE-2020-9859: unc0ver

If you've skipped any updates, you will also get the following fixes, which can help improve and solve many problems and bugs. The previous update included the following fixes;


  • High Dynamic Range output to HDR10-compatible third-party displays and TVs connected with DisplayPort or HDMI
  • OAuth authentication support with Outlook.com accounts for improved security
  • CalDav migration support when upgrading to iCloud reminders on a secondary device
  • Resolves an issue where text copied between apps may appear invisible when Dark Mode is active
  • Fixes an issue in Safari where a CAPTCHA tile may display incorrectly
  • Resolves an issue where Reminders may send notifications for completed reminders
  • Fixes an issue with screen brightness for the LG UltraFine 5K display after waking from sleep
  • Fixes an issue where Mac computers running macOS Catalina 10.15.4 could not participate in FaceTime calls with devices running iOS 9.3.6 and earlier or OS X El Capitan 10.11.6 and earlier
  • Resolves an issue where you may repeatedly receive a password prompt for an Office 365 account
  • Fixes an issue where MacBook Air (Retina, 13-inch, 2020) may hang in Setup Assistant or when disconnecting and reconnecting a 4K or 5K external display
  • Resolves an issue where a USB-C port in your Mac may become unresponsive

If you are on the edge, you may want to wait for macOS 10.15.5 reviews.

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