Switching from PC to MAC

I have sketchup downloaded to my Laptop and the lap top just can’t handle the program. Going to purchase a new MAC and want to be sure that I can switch/transfer the app/software to a MAC product without purchasing another subscription. Just purchased 1month ago. Has anyone had to switch and were you successful.
As background this is currently on a Windows based laptop and I would like to switch to a MAC

There are several matters involved.

First, as you might expect, there is a different version of the app to download from Trimble and install; Windows apps don’t run on Mac or vice versa. Functionally they are the same, but there are GUI differences based on Mac vs Windows conventions.

The SketchUp pro license allows you to install on up to two personal machines at the same time (the word ‘personal’ intended to mean that you and only you will use just one of them at a time). Unless you have already installed on two computers, you should be able to simply copy your license information onto the Mac and be ready to go. If you will be disposing of the PC, you should remove the license from SketchUp there, as that use of the license will be remembered by the Trimble license system even if the PC is dead.

The SketchUp file format is OS independent. All of your models can be simply copied across and will work fine.

You will need to reinstall any extensions/plugins you were using on the PC. It is not advisable to do this by simply copying them. It is better to start over using the Extension Warehouse, SketchUcation, or wherever else you obtained them. Both EW and SketchUcation have tools that remember what you have installed, but I suspect (without actually knowing) that they are tied to a specific computer and you will have to start over.

Transferring your keyboard shortcuts is more tedious. The Mac version does not have a mechanism to export or import shortcuts. It has to be done either by adding them again or by editing the preferences file.


DaveR is, as usual, being a polite gentleman.

There is, however, a danger of this topic wandering off into a flame war about PC vs Mac, with advocates of both sides trying to convince you that one or the other is vastly better or that your decision is right/wrong. My advice is to take every such post with a large dose of salt, make your own choice, and stick with it.

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I agree. I had no intention of starting a flame war. I was only commenting on what I chose to do regarding my computer. I’ll delete my previous comment though. Actually I’ll just get out of the conversation altogether. It doesn’t matter to me which platform people choose and you should make your own decision.


Do you have one yet, or still shopping?

Thank you all. Since I have only downloaded to one computer I thinking I am good shape to place it on the new MAC.
Everyone has their own preferences to computers and thankfully I get to use both. Best if both worlds really, just cumbersome to tote around two laptops.

If a 512GB drive is sufficient, this one’s a nice price for the specs.

Both gentleman @slbaumgartner and @DaveR are behaving like the sages they are. There is plenty of material on the PC vs Mac question available for searching here on the forum. But Dave’s point is worth noting that the interface between the two versions is not the same, so when you switch some things in Sketchup will look and behave differenty.

Everything these sages have said is spot on in that transferring from one platform to the other is not going to be an issue.

I will only add that I noticed all of the SketchUp Campus tutorials are recorded with SketchUp on macOS, and Macs are also what the official SketchUp YouTube posts are using.

I read the other answers, only thing I didn’t see mentioned is that some extensions are Windows only. It’s unlikely you have one of those, but it’s something to be aware of.

As monospaced noted, most videos from us, and all of Aaron’s live modeling, are done on Mac. I suspect this comes from the days that SketchUp was with Google. Although Google are Apple’s biggest competitor hardware wise, they are almost exclusively Mac based. At SketchUp some developers do their work on PCs, and some product managers run their MacBook Pro using Basecamp, making them effectively be a PC. In support we’re all using Mac OS.

My own computer is a MacBook Pro that also has Parallels on it, so I can do Windows 10 testing. My work machine is an earlier MacBook Pro, that has both Parallels and Bootcamp on it. Under Bootcamp it actually benchmarks better than 75% of real PCs!

If I was buying a Mac now I would get the new 16 inch MacBook Pro. In performance tests it’s doing better than the higher end iMacs, and even comparable to Mac Pro in some regards.

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You should also remove the license activation on the old, once you have the new machine. Just removing the software isn’t enough. You need to click the ‘remove license’ button or log out (subscription) before uninstalling.
Otherwise you’ll be left with one activation less.
Btw, one of the benefits of Subscriptions is that you can manage your authorized machines yourself, you can deauthorize the old machine without having access to it.
Don’t intend to start a ‘classic versus subscription’ flame war😃

especially functionally advanced extensions running a window-less executable as processing engine.

support should use all platforms supported.

OpenGL-based display/print/export issues shouldn’t imho not be evaluated with virtualized operating systems.

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Funny thing is that most of the Windows specific issues don’t go wrong in Parallels. Don’t worry, the QA department test Windows issues on real PCs.

A lot of what we do in support is non-technical issues, that require accessing multiple databases. It doesn’t matter what platform we use for those tasks, we just happen to be using Mac OS.

I thought a Windows version was released first, and the Mac version came later.

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you’re right, Windows first :kissing_smiling_eyes:

My memory was that if the Mac version had come out a month earlier, I probably wouldn’t have bought ArchiCAD 7. I gave it a chance getting 8 as well before dropping it entirely in favor of SU.