Downgrade From Yosemite to Mavericks


Introduction: Downgrade From Yosemite to Mavericks

Hi everyone.

I'm writing this because I had this problem myself. Apple really doesn't give a straight forward way to downgrade. So after some searching I found out how easy it really is.

I'm going to keep this as short as possible. (not really... but I tried :) ).

Step 1: Backup Files You Wish to Keep

Step 1:

Back up everything you want to keep to an external harddrive.


Step 2: Internet Recovery Mode

(First, turn your sound up. Trust me.)

Restart your Mac and get ready to press and hold "Command" "Option" and "R".

If you only hold "Command" and "R" you will end up re-installing Yosemite. Be sure to hold all 3.

When you hear the Mac start up tune press and hold all 3 keys. This will send you into "Internet Recovery"

(It will ask you to enter your wifi password. Mine wouldn't work and I had to use a LAN connection. You may or may not need to do the same).

Step 3: Erase Your Harddrive.

Select "Disk Ultility" and press continue.

Select your Main Harddrive (where OSX Yosemite is installed)

Select the "Erase" tab.

Make sure its is set to "Mac OS Extended (Journaled)".

Name the disk something like "MacHD" Click "Erase"

NOTE: After this step all of the data on your harddrive will be gone forever.

Step 4: Install Your Original OS

Exit the "Disk Utility"

Select "Re-install MacOSX ". (This will install whatever version of OSX came with your mac when it was first purchased. For me it was Lion. If your original OSX was Mavericks then you are done. If not.... Continue)

Step 5: Upgrade to Mavericks

Now you have Lion installed. (or other OSX before Mavericks)

Go to the "App Store" app and select "Purchases" (don't forget to sign in).

The first item will probably be Yosemite. DO NOT CLICK IT!

Scroll down and you will find Mavericks. Press Download and wait and unreasonable amount of time.

Install Mavericks!

This worked for me. I hope it works for you.



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    Thanks for the tutorial! I am seriously thinking of downgrading. OSX Yosemite has really slowed down my computer: it takes up to 2 minutes just to be able to type in my password!

    1 reply

    Hi Zach, I have the same problem. Have you tried this tutorial? did it work?

    Thanks for this tutorial. I'm seriously considering downgrading since many music softwares is incompatible with Yosemite. Will try this one. Luckily I have a PC as well, so switching back and forth to read this tutorial.

    haven't tried this as i stuck with mavericks and will stay with mavericks. my que/comment is , what does the volume have to do with the process? thanks

    What else could i try when this messages pops when trying to Reinstall Mac Os X- An error occurred while preparing the installation. Try running this application again.

    Well sorry .... got a silly question .. where can i find that option button??

    command and R not problem

    have been having Yosemite for a year now .. pfff nothing but trouble

    so really concedering to get mavericks back since I read mostly bad revieuws bout new upgrade El Capitain

    I think you can also just go into the App Store->Purchased and find OS X Mavericks. I haven't tried this, but it may work.

    You could also create a usb installer and option boot into it. Then use disc utility to format the drive and continue install. I'd say a bit faster also not relying on internet connection.