El Capitan and music notation software (updated)


El_Capitan_OS_XWe’ve been keeping this page updated with what we know about the three most popular notation software products (Sibelius, Finale, and MuseScore) regarding compatibility with El Capitan (Mac OS X 10.11) since its official release on Wednesday, September 30.

Please share your experience using any of these products in the comments section, and we’ll continue to update this post as warranted.

Updated September 29, 2015 at 4:00 pm with information about Sibelius compatibility.
Updated October 20, 2015 at 5:12 pm with information about Finale compatibility.
Updated November 17, 2015 at 1:55 pm with information about Finale 2014.5 compatibility.
Updated November 18, 2015 at 12:48 pm with information about Sibelius compatibility.
Updated December 10, 2015 at 1:34 pm with information about Sibelius compatibility.
Updated December 10, 2015 at 4:44 pm with information about Finale compatibility.
Updated December 14, 2015 at 12:54 pm with information about Sibelius compatibility.
Updated January 5, 2015 at 8:45 pm with information about PrintMusic compatibilty.
Updated January 21, 2016 at 10:05 pm with information about Sibelius compatibility.


As of January 21, 2016, Sibelius 8.1 is fully compatible with Mac OS 10.11.

According to Avid:

For best results, please ensure that you are updated to the latest version of your Sibelius 8 by clicking File Tab > Help > Check for Updates…We always recommend running the latest version of Sibelius on newer versions of Mac OS X.  This combination gives you the greatest performance and reliability.

There are reported bugs of Sibelius v8 crashing on El Capitan.  This problem was addressed in the Mac El Capitan update 10.11.2, and has no longer been reported as a problem.

Although Sibelius 7 and 7.5 are not fully supported on OS El Capitan, with limited testing, we have found these versions of Sibelius can run on El Capitan with minor issues:

If you receive an error message about not being able to open from the installer as it’s from an unidentified developer, please see this article.

If you are running on 10.10 or 10.11 and are having issues with the software automatically quitting when you try and activate, please see this article.


Finale and PrintMusic

As of November 17, 2015, Finale 2014.5 is fully compatible with El Capitan.

On December 10, 2015, MakeMusic’s Scott Yoho said: “Not only is Finale 2014.5 fully compatible with El Capitan, Apple has just released a new update, OS X 10.11.2, in which Finale 2014d also works well.”

On December 21, 2015, MakeMusic released PrintMusic 2014.5, a free Mac-only release. Its main purpose is to provide compatibility with OS X 10.11 El Capitan.

Regarding other Finale family products:

  • While Finale 2012 and Finale NotePad 2012 are not supported in Yosemite or El Capitan, they do not exhibit additional problems in El Capitan.
  • Finale 2011 and earlier versions are no longer supported.

The knowledge base article on this issue can be found on the MakeMusic’s support site, and you can subscribe to it for updates.


From Thomas Bonte, MuseScore CEO: “There are no open issues we are aware of with regards to MuseScore 2.0.2 and El Capitan.”

Thomas also noted that “the MuseScore mobile app also runs on iOS 9,” the newest version of Apple’s mobile OS, which was released two weeks ago.


  1. Toni Mäki-Leppilampi

    Has anyone verified yet if Sibelius 7.1.3 works with OS X 10.11 El Capitan?

  2. Jonathan Francis

    I wish I’d read this before. Upgraded to El Capitan. Sibelius is now a disaster! I use it every hour of every day, my life is now a wreck!!

  3. Rainer

    Is it the same with Sibelius First?
    My mother uses that a lot.
    Do you have an ETA?

    Personally, I don’t really understand why software isn’t compatible with new Apple releases when those are GA – the beta has been available for months – and vendors should know that people upgrade ASAP.

  4. Rainer

    Oh, and in the online shop, it still says “10.7.2 or higher”.

  5. Gabriel

    I can confirm that Sibelius 8 does not function correctly in El Capitan. Alas.

    1. Joe Pearson

      Philip has kindly updated his blog with my comments re. Sibelius on El Capitan. If there are any issues you’ve encountered other than the crash on quit, please do e-mail me at joe.pearson@avid.com.


  6. Joey Newton

    I’m the only one from here who still use Sibelius? For me it’s working good.

  7. John Blyth

    I think the general silence means that for most of the world things are going along just fine.
    I use Sibelius every day. It’s on Yosemite on my main workhorse and El Cap on my Macbook. No problems so far, but I’m keeping my options open.

  8. Diaph

    What do you think about using Sib. 6 with Mac OS El Capitan? Have been using it happily for years, and hear that Sib 7 has moved stuff around. Thanks for your help!!!

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