Finale and Apple’s OS X Lion

Excited about Mac OS X 10.7 Lion, the new Macintosh operating system? Rest assured that we’ll be supporting Finale 2010 and 2011 notation products on Apple’s new big cat. Here are some compatibility info and tips that may help.


During our testing process, we found only a few minor problems running Finale on Lion, none of which should impact most users’ workflow. Here are two examples:

  • Lion no longer includes a pre-installed version of Java, so you may receive an error that Java Runtime is not installed when you first launch Finale. Simply click “Install” on the error message and Java Runtime will be automatically downloaded for you. Re-launch Finale and Finale will open correctly.
  • The Check for Updates dialog may display every time you open Finale, regardless of your previously chosen preference. Just click OK or Cancel and the dialog will go away.

More in-depth information can be found in our official Lion compatibility Knowledge Base article.


Apple has made some changes in Lion which may cause some confusion:

  • Mouse scrolling is reversed from previous versions of OS X. Mouse scrolling now functions similar to iOS devices, like the iPad or iPhone. For example, scrolling up moves the page down and scrolling left moves the page right. This should be fairly comfortable on a Magic Mouse or Magic Trackpad, but if using a standard PC or older Mac Mouse, you may want to change this setting by going to System Preferences > Mouse > Un-check Scroll with finger direction.
  • The User and Root Library folders are now hidden by default in Finder. To access Finale’s support files in Finder look in the Go menu for “Go to Folder” and type in the folder location (Tip: use the ~ key to designate the User directory). In addition, holding the Option key and clicking on the Go menu will display the User Library. More information about this can be found in the 10.7 compatibility article.


If you’re thinking about upgrading to Lion, here are some tips to keep in mind before you do:

  • Ensure that all of your essential applications are supported. While some applications like Finale transition fairly smoothly, others may not at all. For example, older “PowerPC” applications will no longer work on Lion, unlike previous versions of Mac OS X. Check support web pages of your software regarding Lion support.
  • Make sure your hardware is supported under Lion as well. It’s possible that your MIDI keyboard could function fine in Snow Leopard while its driver doesn’t work in Lion. Again, check with your device manufacturer to see if they have Lion drivers or Lion support before taking the plunge.
  • Before installing Lion, run Software Update to make sure you have the latest Mac OS X updates.
  • Lastly, back up your files! If something goes awry during the upgrade, you wouldn’t want to lose years of Finale or other documents. I would suggest backing up at least your Documents folder (or whatever folder you store your files in) to an external hard drive before upgrading to Lion. If you want to be extra cautious, check out this great MacWorld article.

Already upgraded to Lion? Please click “Comments” below to share your thoughts and experiences! 

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