macOS 10.15.4 is causing some major problems (so no, it’s not just Windows 10 with update issues)

macOS Catalina
(Image credit: Shutterstock; Apple)

Problematic Windows 10 updates are all we seem to be hearing about of late in the desktop computing world, but it isn’t just Microsoft which is capable of pushing out wonky upgrades – Apple has also reportedly hit serious trouble with the freshly unleashed version 10.15.4 of macOS Catalina.

Apparently macOS 10.15.4 has been negatively affecting a considerable number of Mac owners since it was released a few weeks back, according to a report by Mac Rumors.

Those gremlins include full-on system crashes, which are obviously very unwelcome. Apparently these crashes are most likely to occur during large file transfers, as observed by Mac disk experts SoftRAID (a provider of disk monitoring and failure mitigation software).

A post by SoftRAID Support stated: “There is a serious issue with 10.15.4. It shows up in different scenarios, even on Apple disks but is more likely when there are lots of IO threads. We think it is a threading issue. So while SoftRAID volumes are hit the hardest (it’s now hard to copy more than 30GB of data at a time), all systems are impacted by this.”

The support staff further noted: “We are working with Apple engineers to help find a fix for 10.15.5, or find a workaround.”

So at least Apple is apparently already investigating a fix, and hopefully that will come swiftly enough, as obviously this is quite a nasty issue. There’s no real solution or easy workaround, either, except to wait for that fix to be deployed, or to downgrade your Mac to a previous version of macOS if feasible.

Other serious glitches

It’s not the only issue with 10.15.4, either, as other folks have been reporting problems with apparently ‘random’ restarts, and furthermore, MacBooks crashing every time the lids are closed and the machine is put to sleep.

Other alleged gremlins include slower boot times being observed, Bluetooth wireless headphone connection problems, Finder hanging, desktop icons disappearing, and more, with various reports across Reddit, Twitter, and Apple’s own help forums.

Furthermore, from a broader perspective on macOS Catalina, the patience of some Mac owners appears to be running thin when it comes to the latest incarnation of Apple’s desktop operating system.

As one MacRumors reader put it: “Yesterday I did something I haven’t done in 15 years of using macOS, having used every major release and patch release. I've downgraded my [MacBook Air 2013] to Mojave. It became unusable with Catalina.

“Since 10.15.4 it couldn’t even wakeup without crashing, last week I got a full system freeze when I was just editing a document and this weekend I had a kernel panic ... I’ve been running 10.15 since it came out and it’s by far the worst macOS release ever.”

That’s far from a lone voice, with a number of others on these various online complaint threads observing that Catalina is their least favorite version of macOS in a long time.

So while Windows 10 has undoubtedly had a very troubled time with updates in recent history as we’ve seen time and time again, Apple isn’t escaping serious flak from disgruntled users, either.

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).