Items tagged with OS X

One of the disadvantages to buying an Apple system is that it generally means less upgradeability and flexibility than a system from a traditional PC OEM. Over the last few years, Apple has introduced features and adopted standards that made upgrading or using third-party hardware progressively more difficult. Now, with OS X 10.10 Yosemite, the company has taken another step down the path towards total vendor lock-in and effectively disabled support for third-party SSDs. We say "effectively" because while third-party SSDs will still work, they'll no longer perform the TRIM garbage collection command.... Read more...
When people think about Internet security, they still think of the various bugs, flaws, and malware that pervade the online world as a Windows problem. Macs have long enjoyed special status thanks to limited market share, while smartphones aren't generally considered to be an attack vector, no matter which OS you prefer. That's clearly changing -- a new report from Palo Alto Networks illustrates how a new Trojan they call WireLurker doesn't just infect iOS devices -- it relies on Mac OS X vulnerabilities to do so. WireLurker contains a bevy of firsts and achievements. It's the largest malware to... Read more...
Today's Apple headlines are dominated by the iPad, but it'd be a sad thing to completely overlook another important release: OS X 10.10, dubbed Yosemite. Its release comes three months after Apple broke tradition by offering a public beta of the software, and perhaps it's that beta period that ensured that Yosemite's release could happen so early in Q4. Like Mavericks, Yosemite is a free upgrade, but unlike Mavericks, it can upgrade from versions older than one release. In this case, any Mac running 10.6.8, 10.7, 10.8, and of course 10.9, are able to upgrade directly from within the Mac App Store.... Read more...
Red Hat has announced that it has issued a complete set of patches to battle the 'Shellshock' Bash bug that it revealed to the world last week. You might notice that I said "patches", and that's because shortly after the initial CVE-2014-6271 was discovered and patched, more vulnerabilities came to the surface. These were not nearly as severe as the original, but they had to be taken care of as soon as possible nonetheless. These additional vulnerabilities are assigned CVE-2014-7169, CVE-2014-7186, and CVE-2014-7187. At this time, your Linux distribution of choice should have the full set of patches,... Read more...
Three days short of a full month ago, Apple released its first-ever public OS X beta for its upcoming Yosemite (10.10) release. Today, the company has followed-up with a new build, which closely matches the Developer Beta 6 release that came out earlier this week. While Apple highly recommends that everyone using Beta 1 update, it hasn't provided us a changelog; it'll be up to you to find out what's new, although you can expect that much of what changed will boil down to bug fixes. Ars Technica wasted no time in giving Beta 2 a test, and noted that aesthetically, some noticeable things have changed.... Read more...
This past April, Apple surprised us with an announcement that the general public would soon be able to access OS X betas. The reason for the surprise is the simple fact that Apple's forever been a conservative company, careful about what winds up in its customer's hands. So to give them not only beta software, but a beta of the actual OS, is rather huge. Well, that first beta comes today, and it's based on a developer build that came out Monday. Anyone who has signed up for the beta program in the past should be receiving an email at some point today; if you're one of those who hasn't signed up,... Read more...
Are you interested in testing out pre-release versions of OS X, but don't develop? Don't fret: Apple's just loosened the restrictions on its beta OSes, and now everyone is free to participate. This move is substantial for Apple, as it's traditionally been quite strict about what beta software reaches the public - and here, we have an entire OS. Previously, developer accounts priced at $99/yr were required to access these special builds, so it's clear that Apple has reached the point where it believes more people testing = less bugs at launch. Giving consumers access to beta OSes isn't a new... Read more...
There's mounting evidence to suggest that Apple has put Snow Leopard (OS X 10.6) out to pasture, thereby leaving users of what's become a legacy operating system to fend for themselves out in the wild. For the second time, Apple rolled out a security patch for present and past OS X builds dating back to OS X 10.7, or Mountain Lion, and stopping just short of supporting of Snow Leopard. According to ComputerWorld, Apple did the same thing back in December when it patched Safari 6 and 7 for newer version of OS X, but neglected to update Safari 5.1.10, which is the latest version available for Snow... Read more...
Prior to the Windows 8 launch last fall, Microsoft had a strong belief that it was going to change the computing world forever. Instead, it became one of the worst-received OSes the company had ever pushed out. I'd bring up the definitive "worst", but I fear for reoccurring nightmares. Still, while much of the world continues to scoff at the idea of using Windows 8, Microsoft has gained itself a bit of a right to gloat: The OS has seen a constant increase in usage since its release. To be fair, a lot of this increase owes its thanks to OEM builders, but even so, the fact that most people... Read more...
Time and time again, we're reminded that Windows isn't the only operating system that malware writers target. It's the most popular platform for malware, sure, but it's not the only one. If you're a Mac user, don't let your guard down, and be especially leery of browsers plug-ins you run into, especially those that claim they're required to view a video. Install the wrong one and you'll end up infected with an adware Trojan. Security researchers at Doctor Web recently discovered Trojan.Yontoo.1, which masquerades as a critical browser plug-in on malicious movie trailer pages. Users are prompted... Read more...
It's not often you hear an Apple user bash his platform, especially a relatively high profile one like Lloyd Chambers, a photography enthusiast and author of the Macintosh Performance Guide. Chambers, who worked as a professional software engineer for 25 years and has been using Macs since they first appeared in the 1980s, wrote an interesting piece on what he perceives is an ongoing degradation of the OS X platform. "Over the past few years a semi-conscious unease has been steadily growing in my mind: OS X is not getting more reliable and more stable, it is instead developing more and nastier... Read more...
Believe it or not, but Macs are susceptible to security vulnerabilities too, and perhaps erring on the side of caution, Apple has begun removing dated versions of Oracle's Java software from OS X when Mac users upgrade to the latest release. "Java for OS X 2012-006 delivers improved security, reliability, and compatibility by updating Java SE 6 to 1.6.0_37. This update uninstalls the Apple-provided Java applet plug-in from all web browsers," Apple stated on its support website. "To use applets on a web page, click on the region labeled 'Missing plug-in' to go download the latest version of the... Read more...
OS X is a significant step forward for Apple and it has reached a very mature stage. Obviously, we've only got another point release before we roll to OS 11, or whatever Apple ends up naming it. To best understand what makes this edition worthwhile though, let's look at what's new. The actual desktop space of OS X 10.8 isn't dramatically different than what you'll find in 10.7. At a glance, it may be tough to see what's actually different in Mountain Lion. But it's just a reminder that most point updates are subtle, and many of the changes are under the hood. Mountain Lion is essentially a refined... Read more...
Mountain Lion is off to such a fast start that Apple dubbed it "the most successful OS X release" in the company's history. Prior to the weekend, estimates pegged Mountain Lion downloads at around 2 million after just 48 hours of being uncaged, and since then Apple has come out said downloads of OS X 10.8 have topped 3 million in just four days. "Just a year after the incredibly successful introduction of Lion, customers have downloaded Mountain Lion over three million times in just four days, making it our most successful release ever," said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president... Read more...
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