MuseScore 4.0 support for older operating systems

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Summary: MuseScore 4.0 will not run on 32-bit Windows and macOS 10.13. I have confirmed this with Tantacrul as per [MU4 Issue] nightly does not run on macOS 10.13 #8858

The MuseScore developer community uses a development environment Qt 5 to develop MuseScore 4.0. Qt 5 supports Windows 7, 8.1 and 10 (32-bit), and macOS 10.13. Unfortunately, Qt 5 is no longer supported by its vendor. We are planning a near-term transition to Qt 6, which desupports the above operating systems. To be compatible with what is (and is not) supported on Qt 6, MuseScore 4.0 has the following limitations:

  • 32-bit Windows 7, 8.1 and 10 - no 32-bit MuseScore 4.0 binary available
  • 64-bit Windows 7 and 8.1 - MuseScore 4.0 may work, even if untested and not supported.
  • macOS 10.13 - Installer prevents MuseScore 4.0 from installing.

The following operating systems are the minimum required versions to run MuseScore 4.0 (nightly/development builds), first private Alpha and any subsequent versions)

  • Windows 10 64-bit
  • macOS 10.14
  • Linux 64-bit (no specific versions)

According to Macs and maximum macOS versions, the Apple Mac computers that will not be able to run MuseScore 4.0 are 10+ years old.

We would have liked to support MuseScore on Windows 10 (32-bit) for the foreseeable future since Windows 10 is still supported until at least 2025. Unfortunately, this is just not possible. The nature of the IT industry makes software and hardware upgrades a "constant". A software project like MuseScore desupporting certain operating systems from time to time becomes inevitable.

We did not take the decision to remove support for the above-mentioned operating systems lightly. We also considered continuing support for these operating system versions on MuseScore 4.0 and only removing them once we switch to Qt 6. However, we decided against it, since users who had upgraded from 3.6.2 to 4.0 (and came to rely on it) would not be able to upgrade to 4.1 (for example) but would be stranded on 4.0 when 4.1 may have critical bug fixes or features that existed in 3.6.2 but were not implemented on 4.0.

Users are encouraged to upgrade their operating systems where possible, and if not, upgrade or replace their hardware.

For users who cannot upgrade to meet the above minimum requirements, MuseScore 3.6.2 will remain usable, and users on MuseScore 4.0 that need to exchange scores with others using MuseScore 3.6.2 and older can interoperate (Save as.. and open) files using MusicXML.

See GitHub pull request Update to Qt 6 #10108 to track the progress of compiling MuseScore 4 on Qt 6.