5 Replies Latest reply: Apr 6, 2013 12:33 PM by abird03
abird03 Level 1 (0 points)

I'm trying to upgrade my software from 10.6.8 to mountain lion, but it keeps saying "an unknown error has occurred" when I attempt to sign in with my apple ID. What's happening?

MacBook Air (11-inch Late 2010), Mac OS X (10.6.8)
  • a brody Level 9 (65,365 points)

    Is your data backed up? How big is your hard drive?


    How full is it? 

    Have you checked compatibility listings on https://discussions.apple.com/docs/DOC-2465 for 10.7 and 10.8?

  • a brody Level 9 (65,365 points)

    10.8 by the way is not a free update, and must be done through the App Store.

  • abird03 Level 1 (0 points)

    Yes, I know it has to be purchased. The "unknown error" message appears every time I try to sign into the app store to buy the upgrade (mainly because I need to buy pages for my computer, which it won't allow unless I have Mountain Lion).


    I read through the compatibility information and don't see anything that should be causing the problem. I have a Macbook Air late 2010 currently running on 10.6.8 with a 4 GB hard drive. How much free memory do I need for a software upgrade to work?


    This is probably a stupid question — I've backed up some things to an external hard drive (I'm traveling overseas right now) ... do I need to manually transport everything on my computer over onto the external hard drive before (if) I can get this upgrade to work?


    Not sure if it matters, but I don't have any problems signing into iTunes and buying things there. My Apple ID is obviously working.


    Any suggestions?

  • a brody Level 9 (65,365 points)

    Are you sure it is a 4 GB hard drive?  Or do you have 4 GB of RAM?   Those are totally different things.  Once is chip memory, the other is platter memory.    The RAM in Apple menu -> About this Mac is chip memory.    The Macintosh HD when you open it tells you in the status bar of the window how much hard drive space remains.


    If you have just 4 GB of hard disk space left, that's your problem.  You need to free up at least 15% of your hard drive and ideally 8 GB of hard drive space on top of that.  If you hit the command key when selecting the Macintosh HD title, and then use the menu to select "name's Computer" (your name you registered the computer will be in the name) that will let you get the info on the hard drive.   Go then to View menu -> View Options, and check off, show item info.  This will give you your actual hard drive size and how much space is free.

  • abird03 Level 1 (0 points)

    Yeah I was looking at the chip memory. I checked the hard disk space and only have 14% open. I'll do some transferring/cleaning up and will try the download again in the morning when there's more memory available. Thank you so much for your help!