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Laptops

How to install Apple's MacBook Pro CPU throttling software fix

A new MacOS update promises to fix the issue plaguing new MacBook Pro laptops.

The newest MacBook Pro laptops from Apple offer a lot of updates under the hood, from high-end Intel Core i9 CPUs to larger drives to displays that automatically adjust their color temperature. 

But, early adopters also found an unexpected problem -- CPUs that would throttle up and down wildly under exactly the kind of high-end workload these Pro-level machines were designed for.

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Sarah Tew/CNET

Fortunately, a fix is already available. Apple says a software bug caused the problem in the first place, and a MacOS update is all that's needed to fix it. We've downloaded and installed the new software fix, and at least in our initial testing, it appears to resolve the issue. We'll continue to run our full battery of tests to confirm, and in the meantime, here's what you need to know to update a newly purchased MacBook Pro.

  • The problem (and fix) only applies to new 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook (£1,100 at Amazon.co.uk) Pros that Apple announced on July 12
  • The 13-inch MacBook Pro without the Touch Bar, the 12-inch MacBook, and MacBook Air were not updated and are not affected.
  • The specific update you're looking for is the MacOS High Sierra 10.13.6 Supplemental Update.
  • If you don't want to wait for it to be pushed to you through the standard Apple menu > About this Mac > Software Update path, it can be downloaded directly at this link.
  • Once the file is downloaded, open it, follow the prompts and install the package within.
  • You'll be prompted to restart when the installation is complete. 
macos-update
Dan Ackerman/CNET

You should be all set! According to early reports, the fix is an effective one, and stops the up-and-down throttling effect. 

Once again, please note this is just for people who purchased one of the new 13-inch and 15-inch Touch Bar MacBook Pro laptops with Intel's eighth-gen CPUs, which have only been available since July 12

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