Mac OS X 10.4.6 (#3): iSync issues; Update failure fixes; Fix for Photoshop crash-on-save; Font issues, fixes; more

Mac OS X 10.4.6 (#3): iSync issues; Update failure fixes; Fix for Photoshop crash-on-save; Font issues, fixes; more

Reminder: Have enough free drive space before installing Although Apple states that Mac OS X 10.4.6 installation requires only 430 MB of free space on the designated startup volume, make sure that you have at least 2.5 GB of free hard drive space before attempting the update. Having less can result in a partial installation and other severe issues.

You should generally operate your system with at least 10% of hard drive capacity free for memory swapping, temporary files and other purposes.

More on Font issues -- fixes We continue to report on font issues that occur after the update to Mac OS X 10.4.6, particularly a problem where certain fonts appear to be missing (or turned off), or applications provide an error message indicating that fonts are corrupt.

One reader writes:

"I had the same experience as your reader with only having the system-installed fonts available after the update. I checked my user fonts folder and my fonts were still there. So i ran font book, which seemed to re-load the fonts somehow. but there has still been some flakiness with fonts."

Another reader writes:

"Additionally, after upgrading to Mac OS X 10.4.6, Word 2004 v.11.2.3 and earlier versions may give the message that many fonts are corrupt when trying to open a Word file (which actually do not contain such fonts at all). This happens on some Mac models like the iMac G4/2GHz but not in others like the PowerMac G4/500MHz."


Disable then re-enable afflicted fonts Launch Font Book, located in the Applications folder, then disable and re-enable any fonts that are not available in applications after the update.

Re-apply combo updater In many cases, the solution for this issue is to re-apply the current combination updater (PowerPC or Intel).

Startup will not proceed after update process fails Several users are running into an issue where Mac OS X 10.4.6 installation seems to proceed normally but stalls suddenly and presents an error message indicating that the update was placed in the trash, and the installer should be re-launched from the Finder.

Some users are then unable to successfully restart, even after re-attempting application of the update.

If you are experiencing a similar issue, you may want to try some of the suggestions listed in this tutorial.

In particular, users are having success with booting from their Mac OS X installation disc (by holding the "C" key during startup with the disc inserted), then going to the "Utilities" menu, selecting "Disk Utility" and repairing the startup disk, as well as repairing permissions on the startup disk. This, and other workarounds are contained in the aforementioned tutorial.

Image loading problems in Safari Some users have reported that Safari displays broken images on some sites after the Mac OS X 10.4.6 update, while the same images appear correctly in Firefox and other browsers.

One reader writes:

"I downloaded and updated the Mac OS X 10.4.6 combo for PPC. Everything went fine, however when I use Safari to go to the or websites, the images do not load (I get errors). Fixing permissions doesn't seem to cure it. Other than that everything else seems to be OK including Dock magnification."


Reset Safari Launch Safari. Then from the Safari menu, choose "Reset Safari..." and confirm in the subsequent dialog.

Note that this process will eliminate your cache, all browser history, cookies and other personalized information.

Delete Quit Safari, then navigate to ~/Library/Preferences and remove the file Re-launch Safari and check for persistence of the issue.

Spotlight issues -- make sure drive is not in Privacy tab If Spotlight does not function properly after updating to Mac OS X 10.4.6, make sure that your startup volume (or any other volumes you desire to search) are not listed in the "Privacy" tab of the Spotlight pane in System Preferences.

Some users have reported that volumes become inadvertently placed here after the update.

SCSI drives not recognized We previously reported a series of kernel panics when writing to or reading from some SCSI devices under Mac OS X 10.4.x.

The problem was usually solved by removing Adaptec 290X-2930.kext and other related files from the /System/Library/Extensions folder.

We've now received reports from readers indicating that Mac OS X 10.4.6 does not suffer from similar kernel panics -- but refuses to recognize SCSI drives that rely on these extensions altogether.

MacFixIt reader Gabriel Dorado writes:

"Mac OS X 10.4.6 Combo updater prevents kernel panics when extensions like '/System/Library/Extensions/Adaptec290X-2930.kext' are installed and an external QPS Dupe3 CD-R duplicator is connected via SCSI to an Adaptec 2930 Ultra SCSI card (AHA-2930CU) that came built-in a PowerMac G4/500 (AGP) purchased from the Apple Store . The bad news is that the external SCSI device is no longer recognized. So, instead of fixing the issue, Apple has decided to 'hide' it."

iSync issues Several readers have reported issues with iSync after the update to Mac OS X 10.4.6 -- most prominently a problem where Sony Ericsson K700i phones no longer synchronize.

MacFixIt reader Barry Fishman writes:

"The Mac OS X 10.4.6 update process went smoothly for me, with one exception -- I can no longer sync with my Sony Ericsson K700i.

"I followed all of the instructions before the update, and did one last sync before running the update.

"Here's what happens when I try to sync: The initial connection to the phone is made, and then almost immediately I get the following error message on my computer: [K700i] There was an error getting data from the phone. The synchronization may have been cancelled on the phone.

"On my phone, I get this message: 'Session failed. Communication interrupted.'

"Note: I did not hack my older installation of iSync in any way.

"My K700i has firmware R2AY004.

"Here's how you check your firmware: From the main phone screen, use the multi-way controller and the "*" key to enter the following sequence: > *

"Then select 'Service Info' and then select "Software Info" to get to the screen where the software versions are listed. The very first thing listed is your phone's firmware."

Sven Berg Ryen adds:

"After installing Mac OS X 10.4.6 today, I can no longer sync to my K700i. This must be related to the update, as I performed a successful sync yesterday evening.

"I have tried deleting various caches and preference files, yet the issue persists. The error message given says that there has been an error with communication while retrieving data from the phone."

Some users have been able to workaround this issue by synchronizing only contacts, and synchronizing only activities that are less than two weeks old

Note that Apple includes specific instructions for iSync when applying the Mac OS X 10.4.6 update, which are outlined in Knowledge Base article #303419.

In particular, remember to perform a sync with your devices before upgrading to Mac OS X 10.4.6 to make sure the information on your computer is up to date, and to resolve any conflicts between your devices and computer.

List of updated Apple applications Apple applications carry the following version numbers after the update to Mac OS X 10.4.6:

  • iSync 2.2 (new to Mac OS X 10.4.6)
  • Printer Setup Utility 4.5 (new to Mac OS X 10.4.6)
  • Internet Connect 1.4.2 (new to Mac OS X 10.4.6)
  • Disk Utility 10.5.5 (new to Mac OS X 10.4.6)
  • Bluetooth File Exchange 1.7.3 (new to Mac OS X 10.4.6)
  • Safari 2.0.3 (same as Mac OS X 10.4.5)
  • iChat 3.1.4 (same as Mac OS X 10.4.5)
  • Mail 2.0.8 (same as Mac OS X 10.4.5)
  • Installer 2.1.5 (same as Mac OS X 10.4.5)
  • AirPort Admin Utility 4.2.2 (same as Mac OS X 10.4.5)

Menu bar items missing Several readers report that various menubar items are missing after the update to Mac OS X 10.4.6.

One reader, Don, writes:

"After using the standalone combo updater to update from 10.4.5 to 10.4.6, all Apple menu bar items (volume, input menu, keychain status, modem status, iChat status) were gone, and stayed gone, after rebooting, repair of permissions, disk repair, etc. Nothing other than reverting to 10.4.5 from a clone would bring them back."

Mike Klein adds:

"I had installed the Mac OS X 10.4.6 update, but, decided to do a 'clean' update using the combo updater on my G4. I booted into safe mode and did the install.

"However, after the restart, none of my menu items would show up! I usually have menu meters, geek tool and the sound control displayed. I re-installed the menu extra enabler and menu meters. Still no go! I disabled and bypassed Shapeshifter and the application enhancer to no effect."

In many cases, the solution for this issue is to re-apply the current combination updater (PowerPC or Intel).

In other cases, it may be necessary to re-apply the Mac OS X 10.4.6 combo updater from an alternate startup volume

  1. Download and save the Mac OS X 10.4.6 combo updater (PowerPC or Intel).
  2. Startup from an alternate boot volume, such as an external FireWire drive, or use another Mac to boot the problematic system in FireWire target disk mode (connect the two machines via a FireWire cable, and boot the target [problematic] system while holding down the "T" key)
  3. Once booted from an alternate drive, select the problematic volume in the Finder, and "Get Info" -- either by pressing the Command-I keyboard combination or accessing the "Get Info" option in the File menu. Check the box marked "Ignore ownership permissions on this volume."
  4. If you have a third-party disk repair utility like DiskWarrior, use it to re-build the directory on the problematic volume (this step may not be necessary)
  5. Re-install the Mac OS X 10.4.6 combo updater on the problematic drive.
  6. Re-attempt booting from the problematic volume (hold down the option key at startup to select the desired drive)

In yet other cases, the resolution for this problem is as simple as re-enabling the menubar items through their appropriate preference pane or companion application.

For instance, if your AirPort menubar item is missing after the update, try launching the "Internet Connect" application (located at the root level of the /Applications folder), click the Airport pane, and choose "Show Airport status in menu bar."

In still other cases, it very oddly appears that applying the delta version of the Mac OS X 10.4.6 updater can obviate this problem where it manifests with the combo version of the Mac OS X 10.4.6 updater.

One reader writes:

"The heart of the problem is apparently the 10.4.6 combo update. Going back to 10.4.5 and doing a safe-boot update or just a normal update both fail to allow menu extras. The sound icon cannot be put into the menu bar. Now I'm going to forget the combo update altogether and go back to the simple 10.4.6 update."

Problems working with Mac OS X 10.3.x servers -- volumes read-only Several readers are noting an issue where, after updating to Mac OS X 10.4.6, volumes mounted remotely from Mac OS X 10.3.x servers are read-only.

One reader writes:

"There seem to be problems accessing an Mac OS X 10.3 Server after upgrading clients to 10.4.6. It is possible to log on to the server as usual, but almost every mounted server volume is read-only. This does not happen on a client running 10.4.5, using the same credentials."

Another reader writes:

"After doing the update to Mac OS X 10.4.6 via automatic software update, the folders/sharepoint on our Mac OS X 10.3.9 Server are locked. No changes possible anymore at the top level of the sharepoint. when we go down into folders inside these sharepoints, they are ok.

"It appears the top level of the sharepoint is locked. This is confirmed when doing get info on a sharepoint, 'locked' is checked. All other access privileges are correct, according to them i should have read/write access.

"This does not appear/happen when accessing the same sharepoints with 10.4.5 clients.

"We have informed our users to not install 10.4.6 until further notice because of this."

Finally, MacFixIt reader Thomas writes:

"I installed the Mac OS X 10.4.6 combo updater for PowerPC. After the reboot, I had lost my permission to write on server-volumes. That is really bad."

Networking issues: Problems with proxies Users are reporting problems with specific proxy servers after updating to Mac OS X 10.4.6.

MacFixIt reader Andrew Mallin writes:

"After running the Mac OS X 10.4.6 upgrade on my G4 Cube, I was unable to access the Internet. The machine is on a corporate LAN and uses ISA proxy servers for Internet access.

"Safari crashes each time I go to an Internet or even Intranet web page, as does Software Update. I've configured System Preferences with Manual Proxy settings, specifying Web Proxy and Secure Web Proxy information (including ticking the box for 'Proxy server requires password' and setting the password too). This no longer works, but it did with 10.4.5.

"Using an Automatic Proxy Configuration script also does not work (however this never worked with OSX 10.4.5 on our network) If I configure System Preferences to use a PAC file, Safari also quits."

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please let us know.

Problems logging in from Windows systems Some users are reporting issues logging into Mac OS X 10.4.6 systems from Windows 98 systems.

MacFixIt reader Darek writes:

"My Windows 98 machines can not login to Mac OS X Server 10.4.6. There is no problem with Windows XP or Windows NT computers."

Similar issue?

Loss of Bluetooth Some readers are experiencing loss of Bluetooth capabilities after the update.

MacFixIt reader Alan writes:

"After the software update from 10.4.5 to 10.4.6, I lost my bluetooth.  The menu bar item has a line through it and it says "Bluetooth: Not Available" when you click on it.  System profiler says 'No information found' when I click on Bluetooth.  Rebooting has not fixed the problem."

Some users have success resetting the PMU (power management unit) to restore Bluetooth capabilities

PMU reset instructions for various portable models are found in Knowledge base article #14449. For most models it requires removing the unit's power cord and battery then holding the power button for at least 5 seconds, then replacing the battery and powering up the system.

Many desktop Macs' PMUs can be reset by disconnecting power for several minutes. Instructions for the Mac Mini and Power Mac G5 are also available.

In other cases, this issue can be resolved by resetting your Mac's PRAM (parameter RAM) via the following process:

  • Shut down your Mac
  • Turn your Mac back on, while holding down the Command, Option, P and R keys simultaneously.
  • Allow the startup chime to repeat twice, or listen for your Mac to perform a restart process twice, then release the keys.

After resetting your PRAM, Software Update may indicate that you once again should apply the Bluetooth firmware updater, which you should abstain from doing if you were having problems after the first application.

Special permissions messages no longer appear in Disk Utility Previous iterations of Mac OS X, including Mac OS X 10.4.5, added new special permissions settings that could be found when using Apple's Disk Utility (located in Applications/Utilities) to repair permissions. As previously noted, any string that begins with "We are using special permissions..." in the Disk Utility log can be safely ignored.

Apple has now modified this behavior, eliminating the special permissions messages from Disk Utility.

Windows XP dual-booting breaks after update -- fix As noted in our previous coverage, if you have enabled your Intel-based Mac to dual-boot Windows XP using the popular hack, the capability will be disabled after installing an incremental Mac OS X update, including Mac OS X 10.4.6.

In order to re-establish dual-boot capabilities you will have to copy the required xom.efi bootloader to /System/Library/CoreServices/ then enter the following commands in the Terminal, pressing return after each:

  • cd /System/Library/CoreServices
  • sudo bless --folder . --file xom.efi --setBoot
Third-party application problems

Photoshop CS2 -- crashes on save Several readers report an issue where Photoshop CS2 crashes promptly after saving to remote volumes after under Mac OS X 10.4.6.

MacFixIt reader Matt Sarah writes:

"We have performed system updates on 3 G5s to Mac OS 10.4.6. Both machines are running Photoshop CS2 and both copies crash when saving (oddly, the file will successfully save when it crashes). We have tested the same files in CS2 on machines that have not been updated and they do not crash. There is definitely an issue with Mac OS 10.4.6 and Photoshop CS2.

Another reader writes:

"My Photoshop users were ready to riot. We use Windows 2003 Server with ExtremeZ-IP for file sharing. After the update my PS users would open a file off of the server, do their retouch and save the file back to the server. Once the save completes Photoshop quits. To make matters worse the Crash Reporter also quits so I can't find out exactly what crashed. For some users Photoshop crashes after each save, for others it crashes one out of three saves."


MacFixIt reader Bryan Schappel found a fix for this issue, which involves replacing the AppleShare components included in Mac OS X 10.4.6 with copies from Mac OS X 10.4.5.

To obtain these files, either copy them (locations are listed below) from a working Mac OS X 10.4.5 system, or use software like Pacifist to extract them from the Mac OS X 10.4.5 combo updater, available from Apple's download page.

Bryan writes:

"I spent several hours this morning trying to find out what was crashing and finding a fix. Here's what works so far:

"I downgraded the AppleShare client software on the Macs to the version that shipped in 10.4.5. I replaced these three folders with the older ones:

  • /System/Library/Filesystems/AppleShare
  • /System/Library/Frameworks/AppleShareClientCore.framework
  • /System/Library/Frameworks/AppleshareClient.framework

"After repairing permissions and restarting Photoshop no longer crashes."

Microsoft Word 2004 issues Some users report problems with Word 2004 crashing repeatedly after the update to Mac OS X 10.4.6.

MacFixIt reader Carsten writes:

"After having installed the 10.4.6 update Word (current version) crashes upon opening certain documents. Others open fine. I've been working on the documents that don't open anymore yesterday and they worked fine. They also work on an other Mac with 10.4.5 installed."

Some users of the German edition have found that the file "German Hyphenation" is causing the problem.

In order to resolve the issue, remove "German Hyphenation" from Applications/Microsoft Office 2004/Gemeinsame Anwendungen/Korrekturhilfen.

Adobe Acrobat will not launch Some users report problems launching Adobe Acrobat 7.0.7 after the update to Mac OS X 10.4.6.

One reader writes:

"Mac OS X 10.4.6 for my Intel-based Mac killed Acrobat 7.0.7. Distiller works but Acrobat crashes at launch. So far I have trashed .plist -files and deleted application caches. Those moves did not help."

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please let us know.

InDesign issues MacFixIt reader Joel Mason reports problems viewing images in InDesign after the update:

"I updated my work computer to 10.4.6 and now in InDesign 3.0.3 I can open a document but type and graphic files are not visible. Also, all guides are invisible as well. I can open a new document and type in fresh text that is visible but will go away if any changes to the document format is made. I hope Adobe or Apple is working on something to fix this. I have several documents that are at deadline - luckily I have a firewire drive attached with 10.4.5 and have been able to use InDesign on it"

Reverting (downgrading) to Mac OS X 10.4.5 For instructions detailing how to revert to Mac OS X 10.4.5 from Mac OS X 10.4.6, see this tutorial.

Additional fixes included in Mac OS X 10.4.6

Intel-based Macs have better success printing wirelessly We recently published a special report entitled "Getting printers to work with Intel-based Macs." In that report, we noted some serious issues with getting Intel-based Macs to print to devices connected via AirPort base stations or other wireless connections.

It appears that many of these issues have been resolved in Mac OS X 10.4.6.

One reader writes:

"After updating to Mac OS X 10.4.6, I am finally able to print wirelessly (using airport) to AppleTalk and other printers from a MacBook Pro."

Improvements for iMac Core Duo networking Some readers report elimination of the iMac Core Duo networking issues we've covered in previous reports, including problems with VLAN set-ups.

One reader writes:

"As of this writing, based on about an hour of testing, it would appear that the networking issues with the intel Core Duo iMac in corporate networks with VLAN has been resolved with the 10.4.6 update. I applied the combo updater for good measure. It looks as though the AppleYukon.kext file has been updated to 1.0.2b9 from the previous 1.0.1. Server connections, internet streaming, and other services now appear to be working."


Previous coverage

  • PowerPC
  • Intel
  • tutorial
  • reported
  • #303419
  • let us know
  • #14449
  • Mac Mini
  • Power Mac G5
  • previous coverage
  • popular hack
  • Pacifist
  • Apple's download page
  • tutorial
  • "Getting printers to work with Intel-based Macs."
  • Mac OS X 10.4.6 (#2): Doub...
  • Apple releases Mac OS X 10...
  • More from Late-Breakers

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