How to Enable Yosemite’s Handoff feature on Older Mac?

Here’s how to enable one of the most important features of Yosemite, Handoff, which lets you continue the work you do on your Mac carry over to your iPhone or iPad with ease. While Apple claims that the feature is available only on selected (new) Macs, here’s a trick to enable the Handoff feature on your older Mac.

Note: This might need a bit of Hardware tweak, but then, it works without any issue. We tested this on 2011 MacBook Pro, with a replaced Airport Card that has BLE in it.

Before you move ahead with this tutorial, it is important to know if your computer has BLE chip in it. To do that, just go to the Apple icon in the Menu Bar > About this Mac > System Report > Bluetooth

If you are sure that your computer has BLE chip in it, then move ahead:

  1. Download this KEXT file from here.
  2. Now, You will have to enable the KEXT developer mode on your Mac. To do that, Open Terminal, and type the following command
    sudo nvram boot-args="kext-dev-mode=1"
  3. Reboot your MacBook Pro
  4. If you see that the WiFi options are greyed out, don’t panic, this is normal. Now, go to ~/Library. To do that, in Finder click on Go > Computer > System > Library > Extension
  5. Open Terminal again, and type the following command:
    sudo chown -R root:wheel /System/Library/Extensions/IO80211Family.kext
    sudo chmod -R 644 /System/Library/Extensions/IO80211Family.kext
    sudo kextcache -system-prelinked-kernel
    sudo kextcache -system-caches
  6. That is it. Now Reboot your Mac again, to refresh your KEXT cache.
  7. Open System Preferences > General > Enable the Handoff feature
  8. Open Terminal again, and key in this command:
    kextstat | grep AirPort

That is it. You will now have Handoff up and running on your old MacBook Pro. This feature has been tested by many other folks running Yosemite on 2011 MacBook Pro. Let us know in comments if you have ANY query, we will be able to help you out.

  • Bryan Pringles

    So what do you do with the file we downloaded. The instructions don’t mention unzipping it and uploading it to any specific folder.

    • Nilesh Patel

      Any luck on finding out what to do with the downloaded files? I followed the instructions above, but no luck on getting handoff on MBA2011, I too noticed I didn’t do anything with the file I downloaded

  • Matias Gandolfo

    In my case has error: IOBluetoothHostControllerUARTTransport.kext has no Info.plist file.

    JMicronATA.kext has no Info.plist file.

    • Bryan Pringles

      I am getting a similar error in Terminal. When I drag the KEXT file over an error window pops up and says the the files had been installed incorrectly.

      This is not working for me and it is getting frustrating.

    • Hi Matias Gandolfo and Bryan Pringles :

      Please refer to this article from our friend. May be this will help you guys better: http://goo.gl/TIx91d

      • Matias Gandolfo

        I have a Mac Mini 2011, but not appear HANDOFF….

  • MattDee

    It would be nice if you posted the original kext file too as your instructions forgot to mention backing that file up..

  • Tony Rogers

    I just did all this. On my MacBook air 2011, and it has left my airport card permanently uninstalled. Any advice?

    • Tony Rogers

      after fidgetting with the instructions and playing around a bit, i got the Airport back on, but I still can’t get Handoff to appear in System Preferences. any advice?

      • Justin Hansen

        I have a MBA 2011 too and the process also uninstalled the AirPort software. What do we do? Cause MBA 2011 qualifies for Handoff.

  • iTarek

    I tried that on MAC Mini Server Mid 2011 it has BLE in it. and the LMP: 0x6 but it dose not working, no handoff on settings. Hope to find a way because the hardware is right on this device.

  • Martin Naude

    I would like to find out which bluetooth card you are using in the MacBook Pro 2011? i have the 17″ MacBook Pro Early 2011 and desperately need the bluetooth 4.0. could you let me know what the make and model is. Thanks!

  • Elio Deinase

    This trick doesn’t work, and now my AirPort doesn’t work anymore. Please help! HELP!!!!! HELP!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Elio Deinase

    My AirPort is not working anymore, please HELP!!!!!!!!!!

  • Max Rainer

    Will this work on mid 2011 iMac?

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