How do I upgrade from Snow Leopard to Yosemite? Or somewhere in between?

I tried to update from Snow Leopard to Yosemite, I keep getting download error. What steps do I need to make so that it upgrades efficiently? I can not find OS X Lion, OS X Mountain Lion, etc upgrades in Apple Store. This is frustrating as I have a program I want to update and it requires OS X higher than Snow Leopard. I have spent entirely too much time on this issue.

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  • I was further back in the OS than you. I purchased Snow Leopard from the Apple store for $10, I believe. They sent me the DVD. I may have requested it that way. After that I was able to upgrade further via the Apple Store. It has been a while ago, so I am not positive, but I think I might have had to purchase OS X Lion. This time it was a download; no DVD. After that I freely upgraded to OS X Mountain Lion, which is what I am still running on this machine right now. I made a backup of each version on Time Machine, before moving to the next OS version. Eventually I will roll back to Snow Leopard on this machine, because it is old and the Lions run slowly on it.

    My newer machine is running Mavericks, which was installed on it when I purchased the machine.

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