How To Fix macOS Failed To Personalize The Software Update

Failed to personalize the software update error

Failed to personalize the software update error

Are you trying to update to the most recent macOS Big Sur release but you’re prompted with the ‘Failed to personalize software update’ error? The popup invites you to try again after you check your Internet connection? Tapping OK to dismiss it retrying to download the update triggers the same error?

How To Fix macOS Failed To Personalize The Software Update

Presuming that you’ve already checked your Internet connection and there’s no problem with it, proceed with the following troubleshooting tips:

1. Restart Mac

First, reboot your MacBook to flush any minor glitches that could prevent macOS Big Sur from personalizing the software update.
How to: Click the Apple logo, in the top-left corner of the screen and go for Restart…

2. Download From Mac App Store

download macOS Big Sur from Mac App Store
If the ‘Failed to personalize software update’ error continues to pop up, try to initiate the download from the Mac App Store.

How to: Open it from the Dock and search for ‘macOS Big Sur’. Click View -> GET and confirm that you want to download macOS Big Sur 11.5.2 (or whatever version is most recent) by clicking on Download.

3. Use Terminal Commands

how to start macOS software update in Terminal
Next up, you can try with the following Terminal command: Sudo softwareupdate -iaR

How to: Press cmd + Spacebar to bring up Spotlight and search for Terminal. Copy & paste the code provided above and hit the Return key. Type your Mac’s password. (Important: The password isn’t displayed in the Terminal window as you type, however it’s registering. Just type slowly to make sure that your input is correct and hit Return when ready!).

Fact: The command instructs your Mac to search for an available software update and you can start the download. Does this bypass the Failed to personalize the software update issue?

4. Update in Safe Mode

Another workaround that you can apply is to try to update after you reboot your Mac in Safe Mode:

  • Power off your Mac.
  • Turn it back ON and immediately press & hold the Shift key.
  • Only release Shift after the log-in screen is displayed. Type your Password.
  • Go for System Preferences -> Software Update and try to update again. Does it work or you’re still getting the Failed to personalise update error?
  • Fact: To boot an M1 Mac in Safe Mode apply the following: Shut down Mac -> Wait for 15-30 seconds -> Power the MacBook back ON and hold the Power Button until the startup disks and Options on the screen are displayed -> Next, press & hold the Shift key and Continue in Safe Mode!

5. Turn Off VPN

According to Greg this issue can also be caused by an active VPN connection. Turn it Off and try to update! Does it help?

Have you managed to fix the ‘macOS Failed to personalize the software update error’ using one of the above tips? Which one worked for you? Do you have a better solution? Use the comments section and share your feedback.

Related: How to fix macOS download failed error? Also learn what to do if the macOS download gets stuck along the way!