Mac Tips

How to Fix macOS Catalina Update error: An error occurred while installing the selected updates

by Anna Sherry   Updated on 2020-05-30 / Update for  Mac OS

"I cant upgrade from macOS Mojave to macOS Catalina. Unable to install Catalina. 'An error occurred while installing selected updates'. The network connection was lost."

Trying to upgrade to Catalina and it says an error occured."

-- From discussions.apple.com

macOS Catalina brings with it some of the really cool features that you can enjoy on your Mac machines. If you are running an old version of macOS, you can get your Mac upgraded from the Mac App Store easily. But this is also the point for many users where they are facing an issue with the update. They get a screen that says "The update has been deleted since being downloaded from the Apple Software Update server. An error occurred while installing selected updates" and the update just fails to install on the machine.

the request timed out an error occurred while installing the selected updates

If you are also in the same situation and you are having trouble updating your Mac to the latest Catalina update, you might want to do something about the issue and get it fixed. There are a few fixes that has worked for some users and these are listed in the following guide. You can try and use these on your Mac to see if they also help you fix the update issue on your Mac.

Part 1. Working Ways to Fix "An error occurred while installing selected updates"

The 3 ways below are proved to work by users who experienced "An error occurred while installing selected updates" when installing macOS Catalina and finally solved this problem.

1. Turn On Content Caching

Enabling content caching has also helped some users fix macOS Catalina install or update errors so it is worth giving this method a try.

Step 1. Click on the Apple logo at the top-left corner and select System Preferences.

Step 2. Click on the Sharing option.

turn on mac sharing if an error occurred while installing the selected updates

Step 3. Tick-mark the Content Caching option on the following screen. Also, select All Content from the Cache dropdown menu.

enable content caching to fix an error occurred on mac

Try downloading and installing the update on your machine.

2. Download and Update the Upgrade in Safe Mode

When you boot your Mac in safe mode, it only loads the essential files it needs to make your operating system function. If there are any apps or settings that you think could be interfering with your macOS update procedure, safe mode should resolve the issue for you.

Step 1. Click on the Apple logo at the top-left corner and select Restart.

an error occurred while installing the selected updates mac

Step 2. While your Mac is being restarted, press and hold down the Shift key on your keyboard.

Step 3. Your Mac should now be in safe mode. Launch the Mac App Store and download and install the Catalina update.

install the catalina up

3. Install Catalina Using a Bootable Installer

You can also install macOS Catalina from a USB installer but you will need to first download the update to your Mac.

Step 1. Download the macOS Catalina update from the Mac App Store. Plug-in your USB drive having 16GB or more capacity to your Mac.

Step 2. Download and launch Disk Creator on your Mac. Select your USB drive in the app, choose your Catalina file, and click on Create Installer.

install catalina to fix an error occurred while installing the selected updates mac

Step 3. Reboot your Mac and press hold down Option. Select your USB installer from the list to install the macOS update.

Part 2. Other Potential Ways to Fix macOS Catalina Update Install Errors

Besides methods listed above, below we list some other potential ways that not only fix "An error occurred while installing selected updates" but also fix many other macOS Catalina download and install errors.

1. Force Restart Your Mac

When an update fails on your Mac, the first thing you are suggested to do is force reboot your Mac. It reboots your machine even if it is stuck and gives it a fresh start.

Force rebooting a Mac is pretty easy as you do not need to go into any settings menu to be able to do the task. All you need to do is press a keyboard combination and it will get the job done for you.

force reboot mac to fix an error occurred while installing the selected updates mac

2. Switch to a Wired Connection

Since your Mac downloads the update from the Internet, you must make sure your wireless connection is working properly. If you have any doubts or there are any issues with your connection, you might want to use a wired connection instead.

connect mac ethernet before fixing an error occurred while installing the selected updates mac

A wired connection is usually more stable and lets you update your Mac to the latest version of macOS without any issues. In order to connect your Mac to an Ethernet cable, you are going to need an adapter that works with both your cable as well as your Mac.

Once the cables are all connected, try to download and install the Catalina update. This should fix an error occurred while installing selected updates on your machine.

3. Check Your Storage Space

macOS updates have never been small and macOS Catalina is no exception. Before you even proceed to download the update, you must make sure you have enough storage space available on your Mac to accommodate the update. You are likely going to need at least 10GB of space on your disk to download and install the update on your machine.

If you have not got enough space available on your Mac, find the large files lying around on your disk and get rid of them. This should help make more space available and you can then use it for installing the Catalina update.

4. Remove and Re-donwload Catalina Update again

If you're having problems downloading and installing Catalina update via Software Update or Mac App Store, you can remove the download and redownload the update again. Moreove, while downloading the macOS update from the Mac App Store is a preferred method for many users, it is not the only method to download the update.

The macOS Catalina, or any other update for that matter, is usually also available on the Apple website for you to download. So if you are experiencing issues downloading the update from the App Store, head over to the Apple website and get the update downloaded.

Once the update is downloaded and saved to your Mac, double-click on the downloaded file and it will start installing the update on your machine.

Bonus Tips: The Best Mac Data Recovery Software 2019

Your files can get lost unexpectedly before, during, or after installing a macOS update. If that happens, there is really no option for you to recover your files unless you have a backup.

Fortunately, there is a software called Tenorshare 4DDiG for Mac Data Recovery that helps you recover your files even when you do not have a backup. The following is how it works.

  • Download and launch the software on your Mac. Select your drive where you lost your files and click on Scan.

    scan to proceed
  • Preview the scan results, select the files you want to recover, and click on Recover.

    get the preview
  • Select the folder where you want to save the recovered files.

    save recovered files

Sum Up

If you are constantly getting the "an error occurred while installing selected updates" while updating to macOS Catalina on your Mac, the above guide will be of tremendous help to you as it teaches how to fix this issue and update the Mac without a hitch.

  Updated on 2020-05-30 / Update for  Mac OS

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