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macOS 10.13.5 High Sierra Brings Messages in iCloud

Apple has released macOS 10.13.5 High Sierra: a 1.56 GB update you can install from Software Update, as a 2 GB standalone delta updater, or a 2.3 GB standalone combo updater. This update brings to the Mac the Messages in iCloud feature, which already arrived on iOS with the iOS 10.4 update (see “iOS 11.4, tvOS 11.4, HomePod 11.4, and watchOS 4.3.1 Finally Bring Airplay 2 and Messages in iCloud,” 29 May 2018).

macOS 10.13.5 release notes

Unfortunately, there’s nothing in the release notes mentioning a fix for third-party dual-display systems, which were broken with the macOS 10.13.4 update. Given how problematic that update was—see “macOS 10.13.4 Causing Installation Log Failures” (13 April 2018)—we recommend waiting before installing macOS 10.13.5 to see if the update has any problems.

The macOS 10.13.5 update also includes a couple of enterprise-specific tweaks:

The macOS 10.13.5 update includes 31 security fixes.

Messages in iCloud

If you enable Messages in iCloud, conversations in the Messages app will no longer be stored on your Mac but instead in iCloud. The upside is that your messages should sync perfectly between devices and be available instantly on new devices. Also, if you delete a message on one device, it’ll disappear from the others.

Before enabling Messages in iCloud, be aware that it counts against your iCloud storage quota and could take a significant amount of space if you have a lot of attachments in your messages. However, I discovered that Messages in iCloud in iOS can actually free up iCloud storage since iCloud won’t have to back up your messages on each individual device (see “iOS 11.4, tvOS 11.4, HomePod 11.4, and watchOS 4.3.1 Finally Bring Airplay 2 and Messages in iCloud,” 29 May 2018).

Once installed, you can enable Messages in iCloud by going to Messages > Accounts and selecting Enable Messages in iCloud.

The Enable Messages in iCloud checkbox And what’s this, a manual sync button in an Apple app? Will wonders never cease!

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