Tag Archives: Mac News

Apple Releases First Public Update For OS X Lion

Almost a month after it’s launch, Apple has released the first maintenance update for OS X Lion. Following in the trend of the past, it is available for download via the Software Update utility. The download for my MacBook Pro was only about 16MB, and installed almost instantly. The change log was:

  • Address an issue that may cause system to become unresponsive when playing a video in Safari
  • Resolve an issue that may cause system audio to stop working when using HDMI or optical audio out
  • Improve the reliability of Wi-Fi connections
  • Resolve an issue that prevents transfer of your data, settings, and compatible applications to a new Mac running OS X

Personally, I am very happy to see this update. I had been having trouble with my MacBook Pro staying on Wi-Fi networks, either secured or open. Hopefully it will stop dropping my connection now that i have updated Lion to 10.7.1.

10_7_1.png

Interestingly enough, there is a separate version of the update available for the 2011 MacBook Air and Mac mini. It brings the above changes, plus a couple extra lines. Those extra changes are:

  • Resolves an issue where MacBook Air may boot up when MagSafe Adapter is attached
  • Resolve an issue causing intermittent display flickering on MacBook Air
  • Resolve an issue that causes the SD card slot in Mac mini to run at reduced speed with SD and SDHC media

While this isn’t a huge change, it’s probably the last we will see before we get the big iCloud update. Developers already have 10.7.2, which is the current beta that has iCloud integration. While we aren’t sure when that update will come, we do know it will happen sometime this fall.

Were you experiencing any issues with Lion so far? Are you excited about iCloud launching soon? Let us know what you think by leaving a comment below.

Find My Mac Now Available for Developers

A year ago, Apple introduced a service called “Find My iPhone” which would let users locate, lock, and even wipe the iOS device from anywhere. Today, a similar service for Mac has been made available to developers with early access to Apple’s iCloud service. The service is called “Find My Mac” and it lets users to locate, lock, and even wipe a lost Mac.

Find My Mac

The new service shares a close resemblance to the “Find My iPhone” service Apple offers for free. MacRumors reports that the service is able to locate a Mac’s network even though it lacks a GPS chip. “Find My Mac” is able to locate the Mac’s location by using WiFi networks.

When a user tries to locate a Mac, they have the option to play a sound, send a message, lock the screen, and erase the hard drive. In addition, after a Mac is locked by “Find My Mac” a user will be required to input a four digit PIN code to regain access to the Mac. The service is expected to be released this fall along with iCloud.

On Monday, it was reported that Apple activated the login page for iCloud, though it is only a developer preview for now.

 

Apple Issues Mac OS X 10.6.8 Supplemental Update for Snow Leopard

Apple has issued a supplemental update for users running Mac OS X Snow Leopard 10.6.8 on their Macs.

This is the first update by Apple for Snow Leapord post Mac OS X Lion release. The last update was almost a month back with notable features like enhancements to the Mac App Store and built-in protection against known variants of Mac Defender malware, and had updates to make transition to Lion easier.

This Supplemental 10.19 MB update delivers a handful of final fixes for the previous-generation operating system.

The Mac OS X 10.6.8 Supplemental Update is recommended for all users running Mac OS X Snow Leopard 10.6.8 and resolves issues with:

– Transferring personal data, settings, and compatible applicationsfrom a Mac running Mac OS X Snow Leopard to a new Mac running Mac OS X Lion
Certain network printers that pause print jobs immediately and fail to complete
System audio that stops working when using HDMI or optical audio out

A similar 10.23MB update was released for Snow Leopard Server.

The supplemental and combo updates for Snow Leopard are all available on Apple’s website, or directly through Software Update. Direct links to update below :

Mac OS X 10.6.8 Supplemental Update (10.19 MB) – for users already on Mac OS X 10.6.8

Mac OS X 10.6.8 Update v.1.1 (453.55 MB) – delta release for users who have yet to update to Mac OS X 10.6.8

Mac OS X 10.6.8 Update Combo v1.1 (1.09 GB) – combo release for users who have yet to update to Mac OS X 10.6.8

 

Mac OS X 10.6.8 Server Supplemental Update (10.23 MB) – for users already on Mac OS X Server 10.6.8

Mac OS X Server v10.6.8 Update v1.1 (518.28 MB) – delta release for users who have yet to update to Mac OS X Server 10.6.8

Mac OS X Server v10.6.8 Update Combo v1.1 (1.18 GB) – combo release for users who have yet to update to Mac OS X Server 10.6.8

-links via MacRumours

Mac OS X 10.6.8 Now Available for Download

It seems that we may be looking at the jagged teeth of the final update for Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard. Apple released a  security  security  update into the wild today, bringing the official version number of Snow Leopard to 10.6.8.

 

I ran the ‘Software Update’ application on my MacBook Pro, which was previously running 10.6.7. I hadn’t run it in a few days, but the update was around 475 MB. the  combo  updater, which is designed for multiple versions of OS X, is 1.01 GB to download.

 

If you want to see the full release notes, they are in the box below.

The 10.6.8 update is recommended for all users running Mac OS X Snow Leopard and includes general operating system fixes that enhance the stability, compatibility, and security of your Mac, including fixes that:

  • Enhance the Mac App Store to get your Mac ready to upgrade to Mac OS X Lion
  • Resolve an issue that may cause Preview to unexpectedly quit
  • Improve support for IPv6
  • Improve VPN reliability
  • Identify and remove known variants of Mac Defender

For detailed information on this update, please visit this website:http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4561.

For information on the security content of this update, please visit:http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1222.

I find the easiest way to get my update is to hit Command-Space and type ‘Software Update.’ Again, the update isn’t that big if you keep your Mac up to date. If you prefer to get the  combo updater, you can grab that here.

 

Many analysts are looking at the first bullet in the changes list and seeing that this update means that OS X Snow Leopard is coming to a close. It wouldn’t be surprising if that were the case, however. OS X Lion is due out next month, and its time for Snow Leopard’s regin to end.

 

Another important update in this patch is the line regarding MacDefender. As the first major Mac security threat, its important for Apple to develop a good strategy for dealing with such threats. As a Mac user, I am happy to see them putting this update.

Mac OS X Lion – Beauty with Brains

As expected, Apple showcased Lion, the next edition of OS X, at WWDC 2011 in San Francisco. The Lion is a major release with more than 250 new features. Due to time considerations, Apple didn’t detail all of them. However, it did give a rundown of the top ten features. We have already discussed most of them in the past; nevertheless, here’s another quick look at some of show stealers in OS X Lion.

Mac-OS-X-Lion-250-New-Features

Multi-touch gestures: Apple (correctly) believes that touchscreens are simply not feasible on notebooks and desktops. The vertical form factor makes them unintuitive and annoying. Instead of trying to add touch support to the Lion, Apple has chosen to integrate multi-touch gestures. All new Apple notebooks feature multi-touch trackpads, and desktop users can use the Magic Mouse to enjoy the goodness of multi-touch. All popular gestures including pinch-to-zoom and two finger zoom will be present in the Lion. The Lion will do away with scrollbars, which will now show up only when you are scrolling.

Full Screen Apps: Lion will feature a new full-screen mode, which can be easily leveraged by application developers. Several inbuilt applications like iPhoto, iMovie, and Safari will have full screen support. Full screen mode can be triggered via a control present in the upper-right corner, and applications can be switched by simply swiping.

Mac-OS-X-Lion-Full-Screen-Apps

Mission Control: Two of the best productivity enhancing features of Mac are Expose and Spaces. Expose provides a quick overview of open applications, and Spaces groups those applications in a neat and customizable manner. Mission Control marries these two features. Mission Control displays all open applications, along with widgets and spaces, and multiple instances of open applications are grouped into stacks. Essentially, it is a task switcher on steroids.

Mac-OS-X-Lion-Mission-Control

Mac App Store: The Mac App Store has already surpassed big names like Best Buy and Walmart, and is currently the #1 channel for buying Mac software. The App Store will be built into the Leopard, and will feature automatic updates, push notifications, and sandboxing (isolation of untrusted apps from the system).

Launchpad: Apple has taken the application screen in iOS that we are already familiar with, and added it to Lion. Launchpad displays all installed applications in a full screen, multi-page, grid layout.

Resume, Autosave and Versions: These three are my favorite features in Lion simply because they can be a real time and life saver. Lion is capable of automatically saving your work across the system. It also saves the application state. So when you quit an application and then relaunch it, everything from the opened documents and toolbar placement to highlighted text is same as before. Lion supports versioning, and multiple copies of the same document are maintained. It is essentially per-document Time Machine, which allows you to go back and restore past copies of a document, or even mix and match different versions of a document. The versioning system is storage efficient as only changes between different document versions are saved, instead of the entire document.

Mac-OS-X-Lion-Auto-Save

Mac-OS-X-Lion-Versions

AirDrop: This is a peer-to-peer (P2P) application that makes sharing files over the Wi-Fi a breeze. You can share any file with a fellow AirDrop user by simply dragging and dropping the file on the user’s thumbnail in the AirDrop application interface.

Mac-OS-X-Lion-Air-Drop

Mail: Lion features a significantly spruced up Mail. Apple has taken oodles of inspiration from Google, and has added conversations, search suggestions, labels, favorites and folders to Mail. Search in particular is quite powerful and flexible. The interface has also been changed. The new Mail sports a two column layout that looks quite similar to the iOS email client.

Mac-OS-X-Lion-Mail

Although, Mac is still way behind Windows in terms of market share, it has been making steady progress. According to Apple, it has outgrown the industry every quarter for the past five years. Mac has a user base of 54 million around the world. While the sales figure of Windows 7 alone dwarfs the entire Mac user base, it is worth noting that while PC has shrunk 1%, the Mac has grown 28%.

The developer preview of OS X Lion will be released later today, while the final build will be available in July. Snow Leopard users can purchase the Lion directly from the Mac App Store for as little as $29.99. In other words, Apple is releasing Lion as a standard Mac application. This means that Lion will be available on all authorized devices, and will weigh less than 4 GB. The upgrade process will be seamless for Mac users, while for users migrating from Windows, there will be a Windows Migration Assistant.

The Lion takes ample inspiration from iOS for iPhone and iPad, and builds on the already strong foundation of OS X. It’s an attractive operating system, which seems to have the right combination of beauty, grace, brains and power.

Images via Engadget

Mac OS X Lion Developer Preview Released

Amidst all the hype surrounding the iPad 2, it might be easy to forget that Apple still develops a desktop operating system – one with its fair share of fan boys. However, fear not, development of OS X Lion is on schedule, and Apple has just released the developer preview

Mac-OS-X-Lion

Mac OS X Lion, the successor to the Snow Leopard, was first previewed in the “Back to the Mac” event held in October. Check out our original coverage if you need a refresher. Lion is a major update which builds on many of the best features found in the iPad and the iPhone.

We already knew that it will feature multi-touch support, full-screen apps, Launchpad and Mission Control. However, there are quite a few other notable improvements that Apple hadn’t earlier mentioned. They are:

  • AirDrop: A simple, hassle-free way to copy files between Macs wirelessly.
  • Versions: A versioning system that will automatically save successive versions of your documents, providing a simple way to browse, edit and revert to previous states.
  • Auto Save: A system-wide mechanism that will automatically save your documents as you work on them.
  • Resume: Another system feature that can restore apps to the state they were in before you quit the app or shutdown your Mac.
  • Mail v5: The new email client will feature grouped conversations, wide-screen layout and MS Exchange 2010 support.

The developer preview is now available to Mac Developer Program members through the Mac App Store. OS X Lion is expected to be released in summer.

Max OS X 10.7 “Lion” Sneak Peek

OS-X-Lion

It’s official. Apple has just announced the next edition of the Mac Operating System – the Lion. Although Apple didn’t reveal everything about the Lion at today’s event, it gave us a sneak peek at what we can expect from the successor to the Snow Leopard.

OS-X-Lion-Meets-iPad

Over the past several months, it has been all about the iOS. The success of the iOS has helped Apple reach new heights and carve out segments that simply didn’t exist before. And, the same iOS is the main inspiration behind the new OS X. The highlights of today’s presentation were:

  • Apple will introduce full multi-touch support in Lion to take advantage of the multi-touch capable trackpads present in MacBooks, as well as Apple’s very own Magic Mouse. In fact, Apple is also going to launch a full-fledged multi-touch capable trackpad for desktop users.
  • The Lion will also allow apps to run in full screen mode, similar to the way we are accustomed to using apps on the iPhone and the iPad. This should make reading books or surfing the web a joy.
  • OS-X-Lion-Mac-App-Store

  • As predicted by many, Apple will also launch an App Store for desktop apps. Obviously, the new App Store will be modeled after the highly successful iPhone App Store. There will be both free and paid apps, with Apple taking 30% revenue share. Installation as well as uninstallation of apps will be hassle free and a single click affair. The App Store will automatically ensure that you have the latest version of each app installed on your system.
  • OS-X-Lion-Launchpad

  • Another new feature in Lion is Launchpad, which is simply a home screen for your apps. It will display all the apps installed on your system in a neatly arranged grid, similar to the iPad. In fact, Apple is even dubbing this as an iPad layer.
  • OS-X-Lion-Mission-Control

  • Full screen apps, Launchpad, Spaces and Expose are going to be the cornerstone of the Lion user interface. And integrating all of them together will be another nifty feature called Mission Control, which will group apps with multiple instances into stacks.

The Lion will be launching in the summer of 2011. The new set of features are just what we have come to expect from Apple – fresh and exciting. Don’t forget to share with us your initial impression of the Lion.

via Engadget

Macs Cheaper Than Windows PCs For Enterprises

Mac-NewsRemember those “Hi Mac, I’m a PC and I’m Cheaperadvertisements by Microsoft? Those ads were pretty consistent with the general perception that Macs are a lot more expensive than Windows PCs. However, a recent survey of enterprise IT managers suggests that the common perception may not be entirely true – at least not for enterprise users.

The survey conducted by the Enterprise Desktop Alliance polled administrators of organizations, which have 50 or more servers or 100 or more Macs. While the upfront cost of Macs may be more, the total cost of ownership (TOC) is significantly less.

Mac-vs-Pc

A staggering proportion of the respondents believed that the cost of troubleshooting and help desk calls is less in case of Macs. Most system administrators also believed that aspects such as software licensing fees, user training and system configuration cost less in case of Macs.

As always, take the results with a pinch of salt since its very difficult to judge the reliability of surveys like these. EDA president’s statement that , “The members of the Enterprise Desktop Alliance provide products and services that make deployment and management of Macs easier to do”, doesn’t help either.