future of Musescore on macOS

• Apr 29, 2020 - 07:14


I saw a writeup recently (https://9to5mac.com/2020/04/23/bloomberg-apple-to-release-first-arm-mac…) that said Apple will start selling ARM-based Macs.

It also said Apple is looking into some kind of emulation to keep running old Mac apps, but we saw with the drop of 32-bit apps that Apple isn't afraid to eventually pull the plug on old apps.

Are Mac users going to have to keep an eye on the situation so they don't buy a new Mac by mistake that can't run Musescore, or what are the chances Musescore might be ported over?


OBVIOUSLY(!) Macintosh is a mandatory platform for MuseScore to support, and I don't envision any reason why it can't be straightforward-recompiled for new Macs. It runs just fine on Catalina.

In reply to by mrobinson

Hope your optimism is warranted. 64-bit x86 apps have been commonplace forever including in Windows and desktop Linux so I’m not surprised they had a Catalina app ready to go. Porting over to the iPad style hardware architecture that may become standard in new Macs is what I was worried about. Or maybe I’m just not understanding the issues well enough.

I agree with @mrobinson that future versions of MuseScore's will almost certainly support macOS even if Apple decide to change architecture. In fact, MuseScore already works on ARM on Linux, though support is provided by distributions rather than the core team at the moment.

I would be more concerned about current and past versions of MuseScore. If you need to edit an old score in MuseScore 2 then you will probably have to make use of x86 emulation.

And then there's always the possibility that Apple go down the full lockdown route and prevent installation of programs on macOS except via the App Store (like on iOS). This would prevent distribution of the desktop version of MuseScore due to its use of the GPL. Hopefully Apple wont go down this route fully on macOS, but you can expect they will make it increasingly difficult to install programs outside the App Store.

In reply to by shoogle

Thanks for the thoughtful comment! I do have a lot of old MuseScore scores lying around, but maybe I could batch convert them to MusicXML when the time comes (https://musescore.org/en/handbook/command-line-options) and hope I don't lose anything irreplaceable. For the Store I like having a place to get hopefully vetted and safer apps, but a full lockdown would be frustrating for a lot of people!

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