OS X El Capitan has been released today, and so far the critics really seem to like it. I can't blame them a bit, I've been running the beta versions for quite a while and I think it's the best Mac operating system Apple has ever released. It's been running great on all of my iMacs and my Macbook Pro.\nIn this roundup, I'll give you a smattering of commentary about OS X El Capitan from leading reviewers so you can get a feel for what it has to offer. For many more details, you can also check out Apple's OS X El Capitan page. And for in-depth guides on how to use it, see Amazon's selection of OS X El Capitan books. You can also check out our slideshow that contains 8 tips and tricks for OS X El Capitan.\niMore review of OS X El Capitan\nRene Ritchie comes through again with a very detailed review of OS X El Capitan. He notes that this release fine-tunes OS X and lays the groundwork for future improvements:\n\nJust as the granite monolith is part of the national park yet every bit a landmark in its own right, so is Apple's latest operating system for the Mac. It has the same general design and architecture as what came before, but brings an entirely new level of intelligence, convenience, and polish.\nThat includes an improved Mission Control and new Split View; a smarter Spotlight and improved apps like Notes, Safari, Mail, Maps, and Photos; enhanced security and performance, including bringing the Metal graphics framework to the Mac; and new system fonts like San Francisco for alphabetic languages and Ping Fang for Chinese. There's also content blocking extensions, audio unit extensions, and much more going on under the hood as well.\nI've been running it since the first beta on my MacBook Pro and with the gold master, I put it on my iMac as well. It's been working great on both and, given the improvements to security alone; it would be in everyone's best interests to upgrade as quickly as possible.\nBased on both popular sentiment and the narrative from the last year, it's clear that following a series of redesigns and re-architectures, everyone needed a moment to settle and breathe again. A "Snow Leopard moment". El Cap gives us that, but like Snow Leopard it also gives us much more.\nMore at iMore\n\nArs Technica review of OS X El Capitan\nAndrew Cunningham at Ars Technica notes that many of the improvements in OS X El Capitan will appeal to power users:\n\nAlmost all of El Capitan's updates are aimed at detail-oriented power users who are intimately familiar with the platform and its apps. I'm sure that not all OS X users even make use of the window management features present in Yosemite, so they're not really in a position to appreciate the improvements in El Capitan. You'd miss pretty much all of Mail's improvements if you don't use trackpad gestures or Full Screen mode. The additions to Safari, Notes, and Maps are all nice but low-key, and things like Metal and System Integrity Protection are, by design, features that don't draw much attention to themselves.\nEl Capitan follows in the well-worn footsteps of the Snow Leopard or Mountain Lion releases, which introduced some new features but largely focused on polish rather than pizzazz. That\u2019s a good thing for a platform that\u2019s as mature as OS X has become. iOS 9 is a similar kind of release compared to iOS 7 and iOS 8, and the result is the best x.0 version of iOS we\u2019ve gotten in years. Given the breakneck pace of the yearly release cycles, these quieter years are a good opportunity for Apple (and users) to regroup.\nSo, exciting? No, not really, not unless you're a window management enthusiast who is excited to dance on Helvetica Neue's grave. But it's a free update. It has its occasional bugs and quirks (trying to enable Safari\u2019s new status bar was enough to crash it a few times), but Apple is already working on the initial 10.11.1 bugfix release that will begin anew the process of smoothing out the problems that come with any new OS. Like El Capitan at large, that seems just fine to us.\nMore at Ars Technica\n\nMacworld review of OS X El Capitan\nJason Snell at Macworld notes that OS X El Capitan is a very solid upgrade for Mac users:\n\nIt\u2019s not the most exciting word, but I keep coming back to routine as a way of describing the upgrade to El Capitan. These days, OS X updates are free, are compatible with pretty much every Mac that could run the previous version, bring with them all the most important security and stability fixes, and on top of all that, there are a bunch of new features and updates to apps that you use every day.\nThere was a time, only a few years ago, when OS X updates were fraught with should-I-or-shouldn\u2019t-I peril, along with a real price tag. Those days are long gone. Should you update to El Capitan? Unreservedly yes\u2014I\u2019ve found it to be stable, it\u2019s free, it\u2019ll download and install itself on your Mac with nearly no intervention, and it\u2019ll bring with it improved security, speed, and functionality.\nThe days of dramatic operating-system updates are over. El Capitan is as solid as the giant granite monolith that towers over Yosemite Valley. Upgrade, and get an improved Mac. It\u2019s really that simple.\nMore at Macworld\n\n\nWall Street Journal review of OS X El Capitan\nJoanna Stern at the Wall Street Journal considers upgrading to OS X El Capitan to be a no-brainer:\n\n...the latest version of Apple\u2019s Mac operating system isn\u2019t teeming with new features and a whole new look. Instead, El Capitan refines the things that matter most in a computer: how fast our apps work and how fast we can work with so many of them open. Even the name symbolizes the fine-tuning: El Capitan is but a peak within Yosemite National Park.\nAfter upgrading, Apple\u2019s Photos launched twice as fast (3 seconds vs. 7 seconds). Granted, that app was really slow before, but now even Word and Safari launch half a second faster. Most impressive: Opening 20 photos in Preview took just 5.5 seconds, instead of 8 seconds.\nThe new Spotlight lets you search the Web and your Mac with natural language. For instance, typing \u201cweather for tomorrow\u201d shows me right inside the Spotlight window that it\u2019ll be cloudy with a high of 80. \u201cPizza Rat\u201d brings up a link to the viral Web video and \u201cMessages from Geoff from last week\u201d returns seven days of emails (though only if you use Apple\u2019s Mail app) and iMessages from my colleague.\nThe improved performance and productivity of El Capitan pave the trail for a future operating system that even those of us with dust bunnies in our USB ports might embrace.\nMore at the Wall Street Journal\n\nDigital Trends review of OS X El Capitan\nMatt Smith at Digital Trends notes that even older Macs benefit from OS X El Capitan:\n\nApple\u2019s last two updates to OS X, Mavericks and Yosemite, deserved praise. Both added significant features and modernized the aging interface while unifying portions of OS X with iOS in a way no other company can mimic. The fact that both updates were free was icing on the fat, delicious cake.\nEl Capitan is a snack by comparison. Its additions are appreciated but minor, and some features (like Split View) aren\u2019t as useful as they seem at first glance. The apparent performance and stability of the operating system on the aging MacBook Air I used for this review is appreciated, but then again, Yosemite wasn\u2019t exceptionally slow or unstable \u2014 for me, at least.\nAnd 10.11 does feel as snappy as promised. My review was completed on a 2012 MacBook Air with a Core i5 processor and four gigabytes of RAM \u2014 far from cutting edge hardware.\nMore at Digital Trends\n\nThe Next Web review of OS X El Capitan\nNate Swanner at The Next Web notes that OS X El Capitan is the perfect follow-up to OS X Yosemite:\n\n...you should seek El Capitan out rather than let Yosemite update sometime in the future. It\u2019s that good. El Capitan is as exciting as any iOS update \u2014 and that may be because it\u2019s so much like iOS.\nPerformance improvements like Metal have helped El Cap feel demonstratively quick. There are other tweaks under the hood, and it all combines to bring a responsive operating system to Mac.\nThere\u2019s subtlety abound in El Cap, but each change serves OS X well. Perhaps more to the point, El Capitan compliments iOS beautifully. Services like Photos, Notes, Mail and Maps are (mostly) the same app across iOS and OS X, now.\nEl Capitan is the spit-shine Yosemite needed. It\u2019s faster, more powerful and intuitive, and works a lot better with iOS than the Mac ever has.\nMore at The Next Web\n\nSo there you have it, OS X El Capitan has gotten mostly praise from reviewers. I know that it has certainly worked great for me during the beta releases, so using the final release will be like the cherry on top of a sweet cupcake.\nOS X El Capitan is a free upgrade that you can get today from the Mac app store.\nDid you miss a post? Check the Eye On Apple home page to get caught up with the latest news, discussions and rumors about Apple.