OS X Yosemite Public Beta Now Available to Download
As expected, Apple has released the first version of OS X Yosemite Public Beta. Individuals who signed up to be a part of the public beta program for OS X 10.10 are now able to download the first Public Beta build, which is essentially the same version as the recently seeded OS X Yosemite Developer Preview 4 release.
The public beta offers an opportunity for participating Mac users to provide feedback and bug reports directly to Apple for the upcoming release of OS X, this is done through a utility called Feedback Assistant.
Running beta builds of operating system software is notoriously unstable and buggy. Despite the release being available to everyone who signs up, most users should not install or attempt to run these early OS X Yosemite builds, and instead would be better off waiting until the final release, due sometime this fall.
Downloading OS X Yosemite Public Beta 1
Mac users who signed up for the public beta are able to download the installer from the Mac App Store. To get a redemption code and start the download, you just need to log in to the beta seed site (you can also sign up there too if you are not yet a beta program member). You then click a download link to get Yosemite started downloading from the App Store.
Much like installing Developer Preview releases, the Public Beta download goes through the Mac App Store.* There is no way around this, as the App Store is the official distribution channel of the Yosemite release.
*Note: If you’re having errors with the redemption code or general problems downloading OS X Yosemite, you may just need to wait for things to settle down and for Apple servers to catch up to the demand.
Beta software should be expected to be buggy and offer an incomplete experience, and beta operating systems are prone to crash and have a variety of quirks. Thus, it is really not recommended to run OS X Yosemite Beta on your primary Mac, at least without partitioning and installing OS X 10.10 alongside a stable OS X build. Ideally, Yosemite Beta is run on a separate Mac or another drive. Always back up the Mac beforehand , regardless of the situation.
Known Issues with OS X Yosemite Public Beta 1
Apple has included a short list of “known issues” with the Beta 1 release:
Safari may hang when playing certain Netflix content.
iPhoto & Aperture:
iPhoto 9.5.1 and Aperture 3.5.1 are required on OS X Yosemite. Update to these versions from the Mac App Store.
When entering edit mode in iPhoto, a black screen may be displayed instead of the selected photo.
Photo Stream and iCloud Photo Sharing may not function properly when both iPhoto and Aperture are installed.
The shared purchase history page on the Mac App Store is disabled for Family Sharing accounts.
iCloud Drive may appear empty in the Finder after first time setup. Restart to resolve this problem.
AirDrop may not show nearby Macs.
Sending files to another Mac using AirDrop may not work.
If any of the problems listed are deal breakers for you (aside from general instability and bugginess that should be expected) you should probably not install the public beta build. Additionally, many of the features that will make OS X Yosemite so great, like Continuity and Handoff, require iOS 8 to use, which is not available to the general public.