School of Architecture and Planning
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
77 Massachusetts Ave, Room 9-514
Cambridge, MA 02139



Macintosh OX Upgrade

Please be sure your computer is running OS X 10.11 (El Capitan). We recommend you upgrade to OS X 10.11 before arriving at MIT.

  1. If upgrading from OS X 10.7 (Lion) or 10.8 (Mountain Lion), be sure first to disable FileVault on any accounts for which it enabled.
  2. Run /Applications/App Store
  3. Download OS X 10.11 'El Capitan' (FREE!)
  4. When install completes: Apple Menu>App Store...>Updates. Repeat this step until no more updates found.
  5. Run Applications>Utilities>Disk Utility>First Aid.
  6. Turn on your firewall: Apple Menu>System Preferences>Security
Windows 10 Upgrade

Windows 64-bit is the only Windows operating system which CRON supports:

  1. If you have 30 GB free, you can install windows 10 without reformatting. Old OS related files are moved to a windows.old directory, so chances of losing data are small.
  2. We will be standardizing on 64-bit Windows 10 and encourage you to do the same, even if you computer is 3+ years old.
  3. Some programs we make available are only in 64-bit versions (such as Autocad & ArcGIS Pro) and printer drivers.
  4. Microsoft has stopped supporting XP & Vista and neither do we.
  5. Those with Windows 8.1 should install ClassicShell, while those with with Windows 10 should consider it.

Upgrading involves:

  1. Backup your crucial files to an external hard drive and preferably an offsite location such as with Crashplan.
  2. Finally, click on that nagging Get Windows 10 (GWX) upgrade icon before July 29, 2016 (if you don't have it see here).
  3. If the upgrade is successful, reinstalling programs is not needed unless going from a home to a pro version.
  4. Go to the Windows.old move out any files you want to keep.
  5. Delete windows.old (see Disk Cleanup)
Mac Maintenance

Please be sure your computer is running OS X 10.11 (El Capitan). CRON does not fully support older operating systems. Further, we strongly recommend you upgrade to OS X 10.11 before arriving to MIT.
  1. Backup your crucial files NOW!
  2. Make sure your username matches your Kerberos ID, and that your user account is an administrator for your computer.
  3. Download CertAid and obtain (or renew) your MIT web certificates. If CertAid asks you whether you want to delete old certificates, choose "Delete."
  4. Download the file named '' by clicking here.
  5. Find the downloaded file (likely in your Downloads folder). Hold the 'Control' key and click once on the downloaded, uncompressed file named ''laptop_workup_wrapper.command'. Select 'Open', then click 'Open' button.
  6. Answer a few questions SOME OF WHICH REQUIRE YOU TYPE A PASSWORD. Sometimes the password is for your Mac other times your Athena (Kerberos) password. NOTE: NOTHING WILL SHOW AS YOU TYPE. THIS IS NORMAL. TYPE CAREFULLY. The script takes between 3 and 30 minutes to run, depending on the speed of computer, network and all that needs to be done. Do not interrupt the script or use other applications for the tine it is running. Please pay attention to all prompts.
  7. Pat yourself on the back, you are done. Repeat these steps once/term for a trouble-free Mac.

Please also follow these tips when using your Macintosh:

Windows Maintenance

Please note that Windows 7&10 64-bit are CRON's preferred versions of Windows. While a new Windows installation will make sure your computer is in good condition, those with any version of Windows should make sure they are in good health by doing the following:

  1. Make sure you have a working network connection at MIT network (and at home).
  2. Install up-to-date Anti virus software.  (i.e. Replace that expired trial version that came with the machine).
    While Windows Defender in Windows 8-10 is adequate, more effective alternatives are reviewed at PCMag.  Run a full scan (preferably in safe mode if infected).
  3. Clean computer of adware/spyware:
    - Download and run free anti-spyware from and/or (also in safe mode if infected). Just say NO to trials and pro upgrades during installation and startup. The free versions work fine.
  4. Make sure other software is up-to-date with PatchMyPC or Secunia PSI  (both free).
  5. Clean and maintain your computer with CCleaner (free).
  6. Check the health of the hard drive. In a administrator command window type:
    1. chkdsk /f c: and reboot
    2. defrag.exe -fv c: (only if you have a spinning hard disk and not an SSD and it may take hours)
  7. Backup you computer to an external hard drive.


• 2016-10-05 17:02:38 •