How to set up your macOS on your Mac for the first time

We are going to explain to you how to set up your Mac for the first time, going step-by-step through the initial macOS process. In our case, we are going to configure the configuration with a Macbook Pro, but the process is exactly the same with an iMac and another type of the company.

As always, the first thing any user faces when purchasing a new device is its setup process. If you come from other operating systems such as Windows, you will see that the process with macOS is a little different, although not too complicated. In any case, in case you have doubts, we will guide you step by step with all the relevant explanations.

Configure macOS step by step

The first step of the configuration is choose the country you are in doing the configuration, so that macOS configures things like your keyboard, the language of the texts and so on. You will be shown a table with a list of countries, and you will have to select yours and click on the Continue button. Usually yours should appear at the top of the page.

The second step is to connect to your home WiFi network. To do this, a list will appear with all the networks that come to your Mac, and once you click on yours, a space will open to enter the password. On desktop computers you should also have the option of simply plugging in the Ethernet cable.

Next, you will be shown a window with information about your data and privacy, showing you the icon that will be shown to you in the operating system when an Apple function requests your personal information. Here, all you need to do is click the Continue button at the bottom.

Next, you will be presented three methods to configure the device. You will be able to use Time Machine to obtain a backup and configure macOS as you had it on another Mac. It will be a different device, but everything will be configured as you had it. Then, you can also configure it from a PC by transferring the information you have in Windows, or not transferring data and starting the system cleanly.

In the event that you choose to transfer the data from a PC, you will need to install a special application on your Windows called Migration Assistant. Then, having both devices on the same WiFi network, you select your Windows in the list of devices that macOS shows you and you can start the process.

We have decided to perform a clean configuration without recovering previous data. In this case, the next step will be to sign in with your Apple ID. If you have an iPhone, it is the same, and if you do not have an account created, in this window you will have a link Create a new Apple ID to go to the process of creating a new account.

In the next step you will have to I will accept the macOS software license and the terms and conditions. This is the usual, you can read it if you want, but to use macOS you will need to accept everything and swallow with the conditions that Apple imposes on you. This is the same as in Windows, iOS or Android.

In the next step you will have to create an account for your computer. One thing is the Apple ID you are going to use, but you will also have to decide the name of the user account that appears when logging in with macOS. Be careful, because the full name is what will appear to you to choose the account when you turn on the Mac, I was excited by putting name and surname and then everything appears.

In the next step, you can configure if you want to use iCloud keychain, which is the password manager that will remain synchronized between all your Apple devices. Here, in the case that you use another password manager, you can tell it that you want to configure it later, and if not, you can tell it to use the keychain directly.

Now, the macOS configuration process will inform you that you will have at your disposal the Search option, which will allow you to use geolocation and networks to know where your computer is if you lose it, and even remotely lock it in case you have forgotten it.

Now you come to the Express Setup step. Here, you can go ahead with the quick setup so you don’t have to do anything else. And if you decide to click on Customize settings, you can change the pre-established configuration that some apps collect information about your location, and send data to Apple on a recurring basis with information from your device so that, in the event of an error, they will receive the report and can fix it for all users.

If you choose to customize the settings In the previous screen, you will go to a second part of the configuration process. Sorry, but I couldn’t take screenshots here anymore. The first step in the process is to choose if you want to send information about your Mac to Apple, including your location, to improve the product. You can also share the information with app developers to detect bugs. In any case, you can disable everything to maintain your privacy.

Once the manual privacy configuration process is finished, you will go through some screens explaining functions such as time of use, and you will reach the next important point, that of Improve Siri and Dictation. Here, you can enable or disable the one that you send to Apple the recordings of what you say to Siri on the Mac. As always, so that if it doesn’t recognize something they can analyze what you’ve said and correct any errors. You can deactivate this delivery by choosing the Not now option.

Then you will arrive at a screen where you can decide if you want the files in the documents and desktop folders to be automatically synchronized in the rest of the devices through iCloud, and the same with the photos and videos, you can have them automatically upload to iCloud. If you have or are going to have other Apple devices, activating this will be very useful, although in the case of photos you must be careful that there is space in the cloud for them or you will have to buy more.

Next, you will go through a FireVault disk encryption screen in which it is recommended to leave the encryption options checked as they are, and then you will go to TouchID settings if your Mac is supported. In the latest Macbook Pro models, which is the one we use in this guide, there is a fingerprint reader on the keyboard that you will have to configure.

Then you can also configure your payment methods in case you want to. If you already have an iPhone, you will only have to confirm the cards already linked to Apple Pay, and if not, you can add them manually to use them when paying in the App Store or on websites and services that support the Apple payment system.

Now we come to the last part of the process. On the next screen you can configure if you want to use dark mode, if you prefer the clear, or if you want them to alternate depending on the time of day. If you are not sure of your choice, you can change it later in the system preferences.

Then, you will go to a screen where you can configure the screen tones, and when you finish everything will be finished. Now, your Mac will spend a while thinking and configuring everything, and when it finishes you will be able to start using it.