I sent this out to my mailing list yesterday, and I got a lot of good feedback, so I thought I’d post it here on the blog as well.

If you make this mistake once, you’ll never make it again. Even so, that one time will be a serious pain, and I’d rather you avoid it altogether.

I’m calling this the 8th home studio obstacle. It didn’t make the cut for tonight’s 7 Home Studio Obstacles webinar, but it sure came close.

If it ain’t broke, don’t update it.

We’ve all dealt with our share of software incompatibility issues. When you buy any sort of software, whether it’s a major DAW or extra plug-ins, you always need to make sure it’s compatible with your computer.

This is a no-brainer, and it’s something I hope you’re already doing.

However, here’s the thing that can bite you if you’re not careful…OS Updates. What do I mean by OS updates? I’m referring to any update to the operating system on your computer. If you’re on a PC, this could mean going from XP Home to Windows 7. If you’re on a Mac, this could mean updating from Leopard to Snow Leopard. (Or even from 10.5.6 to 10.5.7.)

These updates can be fun and exciting. Oftentimes they will include all sorts of handy new features that will make your digital life so much easier. But BE CAREFUL!

It’s not uncommon for an OS update to completely break your recording setup.

It happened to me years ago. I was rockin’ along, enjoying Pro Tools 6.9, then a little window popped up on my Mac and said, “Hey! There’s a new version of OS 10.4 you should download and install!!”

Yay for me!! I immediately downloaded and installed the OS update. Later that day I launched Pro Tools…ruh roh. When I hit a certain key command, the entire computer would freeze up and shut down.

Why? Because Pro Tools was not yet compatible with the latest OS version.

I ended up having to COMPLETELY re-install everything from scratch. I had to back up ALL of my files, then re-install the operating system (which takes hours). THEN I had to reinstall Pro Tools and all my plug-ins.

What seemed like a nice little “quick” update turned out to be a thorn in my side that took an entire weekend to fix.

Don’t do what I did. TRIPLE-check everything before you install an OS update. Even if only one of your plug-ins isn’t compatible, it could throw off the entire system.

Ever since this little fiasco, I rarely update my system. It’s running great right now, and I have no intention of upgrading to Snow Leopard. Doing so would inevitably be more work.

At some point I’m sure I’ll have to. Even then I’m going to take my sweet time, making sure that all of my software is supposed to work on the new system. Then and ONLY then will I update.

Like I said, this is the 8th home studio obstacle. I’ll be discussing the top seven tonight at 7pm CST. It’s not too late to sign up!! It’s free. Click here to register:


By the way, several of you have asked if there will be a replay of the webinar. I WILL be recording it. However, there’s always a chance that technical difficulties will arise, and the recording may not happen. Play it safe and try to make it to the live event. Okay? 🙂

See you tonight!