Got a Razer mouse or keyboard? Read this before you upgrade to macOS Sierra

Razer BlackWidow

Update: Razer has informed us that its engineers are working on a permanent fix to the problem detailed below, expected on October 1. The company has also produced instructions for a temporary fix to the issue while you wait for the patch, which you can read here.

Original story follows...

If you're a Mac owner with a Razer peripheral, and you're thinking of upgrading to macOS Sierra following its release yesterday, then be warned – there are apparently compatibility issues with the Synapse software and Apple's newest desktop OS.

This has meant that we've witnessed an outpouring of complaints from people with Razer mice and keyboards that no longer function correctly following the Sierra upgrade – for example, check out this thread on the Razer forum, and a short thread on Reddit.

There have been reports of Razer keyboards (such as the BlackWidow TE Chroma) not working at all, and mice (like the Deathadder and Naga) buttons failing to work, and/or mouse sensitivity going all weird – or worse still peripherals outright crashing the operating system.

Fried Synapse

This seems to be down to the Synapse software conflicting with macOS, and the generally suggested solution for now is just to ditch Synapse from your Mac – at least until Razer updates the software with a fix.

One user (Kale) on the official Razer forum suggested: "Once Synapse has been removed you have the ability to plug the Razer peripheral back in to your Mac and use it as normal just without the luxuries of Synapse."

Indeed, Razer's support account on Twitter also suggested that "uninstalling Synapse should enable the mouse to work as plug and play".

Although others say that even after uninstalling Synapse, they're still encountering issues such as the scroll button not working.

Still other folks, for example on the Reddit thread, have suggested that to get things back to normal not only did they have to uninstall Syanpse, but also: "Manually delete the Razer kext as well (/Library/Extensions/RazerHid.kext)". Note that we haven't tried this, and we're not recommending you do it – it's just some advice that's out there online, and obviously your mileage with it may vary.

There are always going to be teething issues when a new OS is released, but in this case folks are frustrated with Razer because this problem has apparently been known about for some time, and things with Synapse are clearly still badly broken.

Of course there are other apps that won't play nice with macOS in some shape or form, as well, and indeed we're working on a fresh section of our Sierra review which will evaluate compatibility with existing Mac apps in detail. Stay tuned for that, because it will be coming soon.

Joe Osborne has also contributed to this report

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).