Today marks a change in the way Apple distribute their operating system, with the launch of OSX Lion (version 10.7).

In the past Apple, along with nearly all O/S developers, have shipped on CD/DVD.  Today Apple launch their new operating system exclusively as a download.  In order to upgrade you need to be running the latest O/S from Apple (Snow Leopard) including all the patches (version 10.6.8)

This is not the article to read if you wish to learn of the 250+ features in the upgrade -- much has been written on this and the Apple Lion page is as good a starting point as any.

What I am interested in is the delivery method.  The download size is 3.5Gb which is a sizable chunk of data to pull down over the internet.  Putting aside the impact this could have on your bandwidth allowance for the month, how long will it actually take to download?  The average Joe maybe gets around a 6Mb connection; I get a much more respectable 30Mb so in theory my download should be snappy.  However with untold numbers of people wanting to download this at once it will be interesting to see how Apple have scaled up their resources.  Past experience of downloading a 600Mb iPhone O/S update are shocking, sometimes taking over and hour rather than a handful of minutes!

I will report back on my download experience later!

OSX Lion is purchased through iTunes for £20.99 (uk), $29.99 (US).  For those who have a slow internet connection Apple will  allow you to purchase and download the update in an Apple store.

and now the installation...

And so the installation begins.  Stopwatch on....

  • 00:00 Clicked 'Buy' from the App Store.  Now downloading a 3.74Gb File, estimated time 1 hour 34 minutes......
  • 01:51 Download Complete, installation started
  • 02:15 Installation complete after a 23 minute 12 second installation

So there you have it, 2 hours 15 minutes from purchase to installation complete.  Much better than I had initially expected.  Good show Apple

Installation was done on a MacBook Air 1.86Ghz Core 2 Duo, 2Gb Ram

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