How To Fix Mac Stuck Checking For Updates & Enjoy New Features

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How To Fix Mac Stuck Checking For Updates

Experiencing your Mac getting stuck while checking for updates can be frustrating. Whether the progress bar appears frozen or a spinning wheel indicates ongoing updates with no results, you don’t need to worry. There are several things you can try to get your system software updates going again.

Mac stuck on checking for updates

In this guide, we’ll explore some effective methods to resolve the “Mac stuck on checking for updates” issue and get your system up to date in no time.

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What Triggers the “Checking for Updates Stuck on Mac” Issue?

The frustration of a Mac stuck in the perpetual cycle of checking for updates often stems from a variety of underlying causes. Let’s delve deeper into each:

  • Internet Connection Issues: Unstable or slow Internet connections can impede the Mac’s ability to communicate with Apple’s update servers.
  • App Store Login Problems: Authentication or credential issues within the App Store login can prevent access to updates.
  • Server Problems: Technical glitches or high server traffic on Apple’s end may disrupt the update delivery process.
  • Not Enough Disk Space: Insufficient storage prevents the download and installation of updates on the Mac.
  • System File Corruption: Corrupted system files or software conflicts can hinder the update process, causing it to stall.

How to Fix the “Mac Stuck on Checking for Updates” Screen Issue?

Method 1: Check and Reset the Internet Connection

First, verify that you have a working Internet connection, as updates require Internet access. In System Preferences > Network, make sure Wi-Fi or Ethernet is enabled and connected. If connected, try disconnecting and reconnecting to refresh the connection. If not connected, troubleshoot or contact your ISP.

How to Fix the Mac Stuck on Checking for Updates Screen Issue

If your Wi-Fi has a weak signal or seems unstable, connect via ethernet or a stronger connection during updating.

Also Read: How to Increase Download Speed on Mac

Method 2: Check Your App Store and iCloud Accounts

If your App Store account encounters issues like requiring a password update or implementing two-factor authentication, these issues might lead to your Mac being stuck while checking for updates.

Check Your App Store and iCloud Accounts

To troubleshoot, navigate to System Preferences > Apple ID and ensure proper sign-in. Click on iCloud, sign out, then sign back in to refresh the iCloud login settings. Additionally, launch the App Store app, sign out, and sign back in to refresh and synchronize your login credentials, potentially resolving the update checking problem on your Mac.

Method 3: Restart your Mac

Is Mac stuck on checking for updates? Well, often a simple restart can clear out minor glitches causing update failures. Restart your Mac to initiate a fresh start, ensuring temporary issues are resolved. Once rebooted, launch the App Store and reattempt the update check to see if the process proceeds smoothly.

checking for updates stuck on Mac

Make sure to allow sufficient time for updates to fully check and download, especially when dealing with larger updates or slower Internet connections, as these factors can affect the speed of the process.

Also Read: How to Stop Annoying Microsoft AutoUpdate Pop-Ups on Your Mac

Method 4: Free Up Storage Space

Ensuring you have adequate free disk space is crucial for seamless system updates. macOS updates typically demand a significant amount of free space, the specific amount varying with the latest version.

Free Up Storage Space

Check your disk usage by navigating to the Apple logo > About This Mac > Storage. Aim to maintain a substantial 15-20 GB of free space for smooth update operations. If your disk space is running low, prioritize deleting unused files and applications to create sufficient room for the updating process to occur without hindrances. This proactive step can prevent update stalls due to insufficient storage.

Also Read: What To Do If Your Mac Doesn’t Recognize iPhone: 8 Solutions!

Method 5: Check Apple’s Servers

Here comes another method to fix the Mac stuck on checking for updates issue. There’s a high probability that there could be issues with Apple’s update servers, leading to your Mac getting stuck checking for updates.

Check Apple’s system status page at to see if there are any current update server outages or reported issues.

Check Apple’s Servers

If Apple is experiencing a service disruption on their end,  unfortunately you’ll have to wait until it’s resolved. You can then try updating again later once their systems are back to normal operations and properly providing software updates. This will rule out any external factors causing your updates to fail.

Make sure to specifically review the statutes of  App Store, iCloud, iTunes Store, and Software Update on Apple’s page. This can help confirm whether the inability to progress beyond the checking stage is due to temporary problems on Apple’s side rather than any issue on your Mac.

Method 6: Boot Mac in Safe Mode

Booting into Safe Mode initiates a minimal, stripped-down version of macOS to diagnose issues. Start your Mac and immediately hold the Shift key down after hearing the startup chime.

Boot Mac in Safe Mode

Keep holding the Shift key until you see the login screen to enter Safe Mode. Now try checking for updates. If they proceed successfully, it indicates something interfering with the usual normal startup is causing problems updating.

Third-party apps, login items or font issues are known culprits. You can disable automatic login and clear font caches to see if that helps when booting normally again.

Booting Safe Mode just isolates the system so only critical components load. If updates work fine this way, it shows they are getting blocked at regular startup by something non-critical. Use Safe Mode to identify if updates succeed in this minimalist environment. Then troubleshoot what’s conflicting at a normal boot.

Method 7: Reinstall Problematic Applications

If testing as a new user proved successful, log back to your original account again. Try selectively uninstalling or reinstalling apps that modify system components. Also, check app config files to see if any settings related to disabling updates exist.

With problematic apps updated, removed, or disabled, test if the system updates function again properly while logged into your regular user account.


This wraps up our guide on how to fix the Mac stuck on checking for updates issue. Just taking a methodical approach in checking each possible cause usually reveals why your Mac gets stuck checking for updates. Carefully going through connectivity, account access, apps, and space constraints ultimately leads to hitting the right fix and getting updates installed again.

Exercise patience while being persistent and don’t hesitate to contact Apple support if the issue persists. With the proper troubleshooting steps for the “Mac Software update stuck” issue, you’ll get your Mac system software updating smoothly again.

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