Recommended software

Administrative software
Graphic design software
Research software

Operating Systems supported by HMS IT

⚠️ Caution If the computer is connected to scientific equipment and runs specialized software, please check with your local IT support team before upgrading.


HMS IT fully supports the following macOS versions:

  • 10.14 (Mojave)
  • 10.15 (Catalina) 
  • 11.2 (Big Sur) 

macOS 10.13 and older are no longer supported by Apple or HMS IT. HMS IT will provide best-effort support for unsupported operating systems; however, the general recommendation is to upgrade to a newer supported operating system whenever possible.

Use caution when upgrading

Each year, Apple releases a major new operating system in the fall. HMS IT strongly recommends that you do not upgrade right away. New operating systems generally have many new features that are incompatible with existing software applications.

HMS IT starts an internal evaluation of new operating systems as early as possible. Generally, we recommend waiting to upgrade until we've completed that evaluation and Apple has released its first update, usually 10.xx.1.

If you would like guidance on upgrading to a newer version of macOS, please check with your local IT support team or contact the HMS IT Service Desk by emailing or calling 617-432-2000.

Windows 7

The Windows 7 operating system is no longer supported on January 14, 2020.  This means Microsoft will no longer fix security flaws discovered in Windows 7. Continuing to use Windows 7 will expose you and everyone you work with to significantly increased risks. If any of the computers you use still have Windows 7, contact your local IT support team or the HMS IT Service Desk immediately to schedule your upgrade to Windows 10.

Windows 10

All new computers purchased from Dell now ship with Windows 10 preinstalled.

If you have a computer that you wish to upgrade to Windows 10, please contact your local IT support team or the HMS IT Service Desk. Numerous considerations must be taken into account before installing Windows 10. Your local IT support team can assist you by making recommendations, upgrading, and providing ongoing support for Windows 10.

HMS and Harvard University are now supporting Windows 10 for common applications. If you use University Administrative Applications, please be sure to follow HUIT's computer standard guidelines (sign in required).

  • Windows 10 Home Edition is not supported on the Harvard Medical School network due to a lack of required security features.
  • Windows 10 includes an automatic update feature. If you are accessing any university administrative applications and are prompted to update to Windows 10, please decline the update.