Use this tool to download macOS Sonoma's stunning wallpapers more easily

macOs sonoma home screen
(Image credit: Future)

Apple's macOS Sonoma software update has been on Macs around the world for a few weeks now, and it's been largely well received thanks to new features like improved widget support and some gorgeous new live wallpapers. But even those live wallpapers aren't perfect.

There's no denying that the wallpapers look great, with options for all kinds of settings including cityscapes and images from space. But because of the sheer size of these things Apple doesn't install them all by default. Which would be fine, if installing them wasn't a manual job of doing it one by one, every time you want to test one out.

Thankfully, there is now a way around all of that and it's a simple script that you can download for free and run on your own Mac to batch download those wallpapers. And by all accounts, it works well.

Downloading en masse

The new tool was posted to GitHub by Mike Swanson and you can download it right now. Swanson explains that the script was created for the same reason you probably want it — they wanted a way to download all of the macOS Sonoma wallpapers at once without doing it by selecting each one individually and then waiting for the download to complete.

"I love the live wallpaper videos in macOS Sonoma, but I don't like that I have to download each video individually," Swanson explains. "So, until Apple adds a "download all" button to their Wallpaper settings, you can use this script."

It's easy to see why Apple chose not to preinstall the wallpapers, though. Swanson says that this script "allows you to download just one wallpaper category (e.g. 'Earth') at a time, or you can choose to download all categories at once (which currently results in 134 video files and ~65 GB of data)." That's a lot of SSD space, especially on Macs with just 128GB of storage.

Running the script is easy once you've got it and you'll find the instructions in the GitHub repository's ReadMef file to help you get started, too. Now the only real question is which wallpaper to choose once you have them all.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too. Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.