Today has been a day filled with new update releases. Apple released iOS 6 to the public today and OS X 10.8.2. Microsoft also released Office for Mac 2011 version 14.2., which adds support for the Retina display on the new MacBook Pro released in June. This update makes text more crisp and all key areas of the interface sharper than ever, Microsoft said in a post in its official Office for Mac blog. The update should be available via AutoUpdate.
We’re happy to announce that Office for Mac 2011 (version 14.2.4) now supports Retina display for Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook. Text everywhere is incredibly crisp and all key areas of the interface are now sharper than ever. We hope you enjoy this fantastic software experience!
In addition, the new update brought a number of enhancements for Outlook including calendar event reminders, Mountain Lion compatibility for signatures, and fixes for several other issues. Microsoft also promised that its team is “going back to work on even more great features” for Office for Mac.
A new report about desktop operating shares from analytics firm Net Applications reveals that Microsoft’s Windows Vista fell in August to 6.15 percent of traced web usage. During the same time period, Apple’s latest operating system, OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion increased to 1.34 percent of all tracked web usage.
For the first time ever, Apple’s OS X operating system dethroned Microsoft’s Windows Vista. Also, for the first time, Windows 7 has passed Windows XP to become the world’s largest operating system.
Apple’s most popular Mac continues to be OS X 10.7 Lion. OS X Lion 10.7 represents 2.29 percent of computers tracked on the web. Snow Leopard accounted for 2.23 percent of usage and Leopard accounted for 0.65 percent. The total share of OS X was 6.51 percent, which beat the 6.15 percent held by Windows Vista. In addition, Apple’s OS X 10.4 Tiger, which first launched in April of 2005 represent 0.15% of operating systems seen online.
Apple’s share of devices is of course much higher when the iPhone and iPad are included. Net Applications found that the iPad represented for 3.37 percent of web traffic, while the iPhone was 2.42 percent. The smallest share listed in the report was Amazon’s Kindle Fire, which accounted for 0.04 percent of devices.
It has been around four days since Apple released the latest version of OS X, Mountain Lion, on the Mac App Store for $19.99. Today, Apple announced that OS X Mountain Lion has been downloaded more than three million times in just four days, making it unarguably the most popular and successful OS X release in the OS history.
“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 of Worldwide Marketing.
Starting with OS X Lion, Apple started releasing OS X releases on the Mac App Store. While the Lion launch was plagued with users complaining about slow download speeds and server capping out, things have been significantly better with Mountain Lion. While users did report of slow download speeds, they were quite a minor percentage as compared to earlier. Also, the slow download issue only last for a couple of hours at maximum, unlike last time where some users had to wait for 2-3 days to download the OS at reasonable speed.
As reported earlier, Apple has finally released the latest version of OS X, Mountain Lion for $19.99, on the Mac App Store. The latest version of OS X comes with more than 200 new features, and is the ninth major release of OS X.
Below are some of the most highlighted features of OS X Mountain Lion -:
- iCloud integration, for easy set up of your Mail, Contacts, Calendar, Messages, Reminders and Notes, and keeping everything, including iWork® documents, up to date across all your devices;
- the all new Messages app, which replaces iChat® and brings iMessage™ to the Mac, so you can send messages to anyone with an iPhone®, iPad®, iPod touch® or another Mac;
- Notification Center, which streamlines the presentation of notifications and provides easy access to alerts from Mail, Calendar, Messages, Reminders, system updates and third party apps;
- system-wide Sharing, to make it easy to share links, photos, videos and other files quickly without having to switch to another app, and you just need to sign in once to use third-party services like Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and Vimeo;
- Facebook integration, so you can post photos, links and comments with locations right from your apps, automatically add your Facebook friends to your Contacts, and even update your Facebook status from within Notification Center;
- Dictation, which allows you to dictate text anywhere you can type, whether you’re using an app from Apple or a third party developer;
- AirPlay Mirroring, an easy way to wirelessly send an up-to-1080p secure stream of what’s on your Mac to an HDTV using Apple TV®, or send audio to a receiver or speakers that use AirPlay; and
- Game Center, which brings the popular social gaming network from iOS to the Mac so you can enjoy live, multiplayer games with friends whether they’re on a Mac, iPhone, iPad or iPod touch.
The 10.8 version of Mountain Lion does not include Facebook integration though. A future software update from Apple will bring this feature.
If you own a Mac, I will highly recommend you to wait for at least 24-36 hours before you go ahead and start your OS X Mountain Lion download. Apple servers’ must be under intense load right now, and chances are you will get insanely slow download speed.
Mac OS X is known to be repellent from viruses and Trojans for a long time now, but since the popularity of Mac has grown, virus creators have started to target the OS with new viruses. Just last week it was reported that a Flashback Trojan had infected 600,000 Macs.
Today, Apple has published a support document regarding the Flashback trojan that affects OS X computers, as noted by Jim Dalrymple of The Loop. Last week, a Java update was released to fix the security flaw that the virus was attacking. While 3rd party tools have been developed to test for the infection, Apple reveals they are working on their own tool to detect and remove the software.
In addition, Apple is working with ISPs worldwide to disable the servers that send commands to the malware. Apple also advises Macs running OS X 10.5 or earlier to disable Java in their browser preferences.
Mac OS X has been devoid of any large scale viruses and Trojans for a long time now. However, of late as the popularity of Mac has grown, virus creators have started targeting the OS with new viruses. This is evident with the number of viruses and Trojans which are being written for Mac. Take for example the Fake Mac Defender Anti-Virus (removal instructions).
A recent investigation by a security group has found out that a new virus called Flashback has been infecting nearly 600,000 Macs globally. The latest variation of this virus has been targeting an unpatched Java vulnerability in Mac based PCs. The OSX Flashback Trojan connects to a remote server and downloads instructions and payload. Once the payload has been downloaded the malware will modify webpages in the web browser and try to collect personal and other information and send it back to their servers.
If you are a Mac user, the first thing you should do is apply the new patch supplied by Apple that patches this vulnerability. However, there is a chance that you might have been already infected by the Trojan.
F-secure has put up some detailed instructions on their website to find out whether you are infected by the Flashback Trojan for Mac along with instructions to remove the OSX Flashback Trojan. You can visit this page to find instructions for removing Flashback Trojan and remove it from your system.
The detection and removal instructions are targeted towards advanced users so you might want to have someone familiar with Terminal taking a look at it for you.
Also, don’t forget to apply the latest update patch supplied by Apple. To do that, open the main system menu on your Mac by clicking on the “Apple icon” and click on the item “Software update”. Once the software update has checked for updates, apply any new patch/Java update that is available for your system.
We’ll try and post more simpler detection and removal instructions for this shortly.
Apple just released the OS X Mountain Lion Developer Preview (Download Mountain Lion) for users. The Mac OS in itself is big news, however, one of the interesting thing about the OS is the Galaxy wallpaper used on the preview desktop.
Several users have liked the new desktop Wallpaper used on Mountain Lion OS X and have been raving about it. However, not everyone can download OS X Mountain Lion yet, but you can at-least get hold of the wallpaper used on it.
Interested? You can download the OS X Mountain Lion by clicking on this link.
Over the thanksgiving weekend while everyone was updating their parents’ browsers, Microsoft rolled out an update for Windows Phone 7’s OS X client. On Windows, Zune is the client; on OS X, Microsoft has a no-frills & simple sync client. According to the details shared on Apple’s App Store, the new update has a couple of feature additions. With Windows Phone 7 Mango, Microsoft introduced custom ringtone support and now OS X users can add ringtones to their WP7s without Zune. The ringtones need to be less than 39 seconds and no more than an MB.
The update log says 13 additional languages are now supported by the client and that there is drag and drop support for the Browse window. I am not entirely sure if these are new additions. The WP7 Mac client has had Aperture support for a while in addition to iTunes and iPhoto sync. Aperture is an image editing software by Apple for photographers. The update log:
It was certainly a long time in coming. It was hyped to no end by Apple, who heralded it as a rethinking of the operating system. It takes the way we think about interacting with our machines and turns it inside out.Many have called it the death of the traditional computer. Most people just call it OS X Lion.
Lion was first announced to the world at WWDC in 2011. With it came the announcement of iCloud, Apple’s new cloud storage initiative, and iOS 5. While those two things won’t be available to the public until this fall, Lion launched on July 20. I upgraded that very day, and have spent the week exploring the newest version of Mac OS X.
With a piece of software this big, its hard to decide where to start a review. While the major pieces of the OS haven’t changed that much, Lion does introduce a number of new features. I am going to try and keep this review to something user friendly, avoiding most of the technical upgrades and changes. I will try to hit all of the features I think are real game changers.
The features I will be covering are:
- The User Interface
- Full Screen Apps
- Multi-Touch Gestures
- Mission Control
- Auto-Save and Versions
- Others, including Air Drop and Mail
- (The Lack of) Rosetta
To read the review, simply click on the numbers 1-8 at the bottom of this post.
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.