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How to check if your older Mac Pro supports macOS Mojave Dark Mode

Older Mac Pro on its side
Older Mac Pro on its side (Image credit: iMore)

Apple has already informed developers of which Mac hardware will be supported (opens in new tab) under macOS Mojave. The general rule of thumb is that if your hardware is from 2012 and newer (other than regular MacBook that must be from 2015 and newer), you'll likely be able to enjoy all of the macOS Mojave features including the long awaited Dark Mode. One exception is that Apple has thrown us older Mac Pro 2010-2012 owners a bone and if you happen to have a GPU that supports Metal, you'll be able to get all of the neat features available under macOS Mojave despite having older hardware. Yay!

Metal 2 needed for Dark Mode

As with any graphical updates, newer features may require newer hardware. Cool new transitions, transparencies and general improvements to the moving and opening of windows will introduce new computing requirements. So older Macs not making the cut that cannot support these newer features is understandable. But since Apple has said that no new Mac Pro hardware will be coming this year (and maybe only arriving at the end of next year), Mac Pros that are older than the general rule of thumb 2012 date will still be allowed to install macOS Mojave and those with Metal capable GPUs will be able to run the new fancy-dancy Dark Mode. Here's how to check if your Mac GPU is Metal capable for Dark Mode.

Checking for Metal capabilities

  1. Click on the  on your desktop.
  2. Select About This Mac.
  3. Under the Overview Tab, click System Report….

  1. Under the Hardware side section, select Graphics/Displays.
  2. Under your GPU section, see if the Metal information string is present.
  3. If you see Metal: Supported, feature set macOS GPUFamily1 v3, you're good to go!

If you do not see any reference to Metal in your Graphics/Display heading, then your GPU is not supported. You can remedy this by upgrading your GPU (opens in new tab) to one that supports Metal.

Here's an example of an unsupported GPU:

Final comments

Apple's macOS Mojave will be due out later this fall, but is available as a public beta now if you're brave enough to update your OS and aren't in need of a stable production environment. Otherwise, use this time to get your Mac Pro GPUs ready for macOS Mojave this fall! Will you be using macOS Mojave on your Mac Pro? Tell us about it in the comments!

  • How is it THAT GPU intensive to show black instead of grey?
  • I've not heard that Dark Mode will require Metal nor do I see why it would need it. If, for some bizarre reason, Apple does decide to restrict Dark Mode, then someone will release a simple tweak to enable it. There's already a Terminal command to run a specific application in Dark mode.
  • This article isn't correct. Nothing to do with Dark Mode. Metal is needed to run the OS as a whole. macOS Mojave's entire GUI is now Metal and doesn't support OpenGL whatsoever. This makes sense considering Apple announced OpenGL's deprecation.
  • That makes a lot more sense, thanks for the clarification