macOS Big Sur: Guides, how-tos, tips, and everything you need to know about Apple's new Mac OS

Bookmark this page to quickly find all of our tips, guides, and how-tos for all the new features in macOS Big Sur.

Credit: Apple

The “10” era of the Mac operating system (Mac OS X and macOS 10) is now over. Apple decided to turn it up to (version) 11 and released macOS Big Sur.

With macOS Big Sur, you’ll find that still a very familiar OS, but there are several changes that will help you be more productive. To help you learn about those new features, we have written guides and how-tos so you can get the most out of the software. We have a list of those articles here to help you get started.

macOS Big Sur FAQ

Want a quick overview of what’s in Big Sur? Read our macOS Big Sur FAQ. The FAQ also has a Mac compatibility list, how to install Big Sur, and more.

User interface and Control Center

Apple stays true to its UI philosophy with Big Sur, but the graphical components have been refined to give the OS a modern look. While a when or dialog box may look different, don’t worry, it works just as you remember it.

Apple also brought over the Control Center that you are used to using in iOS. It’s a great way to quickly access some Mac controls. Control Center is accessed by clicking on the Control Center icon in the upper right of the menu bar, near the date/time.

Learn more about the user interface changes in macOS Big Sur.

Notifications Center

Apple redesigned Notification Center so that it more closely resembles the iOS 14 version. Notifications are now grouped together, and the Center now supports widgets. Here’s how to add, remove, and manage notifications and widgets in Notification Center.


Apple used its Mac Catalyst technology to convert the iOS version of Messages to a version for the Mac. The result is that the Mac’s instant messaging app is more robust and works just like it does on the iPhone and iPad. Find out what’s new in Messages.

Photos 6

The Photos app is one of the most popular apps on the Mac. So you probably want to be aware of the new features. Find out what’s new in the Photos app.

Safari 14

The new version of Apple’s browser puts an emphasis on speed and privacy. There’s also a new start page, a new translation tool, and more. Get the details on Safari 14.

Create a macOS Big Sur USB installer drive

You can put the put the macOS Big Sur software installer on an external USB thumb drive or hard drive and use it to install the operating system on a Mac. It’s a handy tool to have around. How to create a bootable macOS Big Sur installer drive.

More articles about macOS Big Sur

Here are a few more articles to help you become more familiar with Big Sur.

Join the newsletter!


Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags macOS Big Sur

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Roman Loyola

Roman Loyola
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Cate Bacon

Aruba Instant On AP11D

The strength of the Aruba Instant On AP11D is that the design and feature set support the modern, flexible, and mobile way of working.

Dr Prabigya Shiwakoti

Aruba Instant On AP11D

Aruba backs the AP11D up with a two-year warranty and 24/7 phone support.

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers


This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang


It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?