Troubleshooting utility news and updates

Our utilities update report is a column on updates for Mac utilities that have been released in the past week, which this time were primarily hardware management and monitoring tools, plus a popular benchmarking suite.

Our utilities update report is a column on updates for Mac utilities that have been released in the past week. Though a utility can be any tool that helps you perform a routine task (including image manipulation and synchronization), our focus in this column is on bringing you those tools that help in troubleshooting Mac hardware and software problems. This week there were updates to hardware monitoring tools, tools for files and filesystem management, and some maintenance tools.

Hardware
In hardware utilities, the popular Hardware Monitor, Hardware Monitor Remote, and Temperature Monitor utilities have been updated to support the latest hardware components from Apple. These include the new 2001 MacBook Pro models, the latest Sandy Bridge CPUs from Intel, and more support for six-core CPUs used in the latest Mac Pro systems. In addition, the utilities correct a problem in which incorrect production dates were shown for various computer systems. Hardware Monitor and Hardware Monitor Remote are $7.00 after the free trial, while Temperature Monitor is free.

The next hardware management utility updated this past week is SMARTReporter, which can be used to check the S.M.A.R.T. status of internal hard drives and warn if it is about to fail. The tool has been updated with an important bug fix for an issue that caused Mail to forget server passwords. There are several S.M.A.R.T. monitoring tools, but SMARTReporter is one of few that are free.

The last hardware-related tool is System Stamp, which shows information about your system conveniently on the desktop. It is not a direct troubleshooting utility, but may help if you need quick information about your system. The tool is $1.99 for a license.

Files and Filesystem
There are two updates to filesystem management utilities this week. The first is for DupeGuru, which is one of several duplicate-file management tools that are available. These tools can really help when managing files after a migration or switch to a new account. The update fixes bugs with potential crashes in addition to fixing some small UI bugs. DupeGuru is $19.95 for a license.

The next update is for Disk Drill, which is a budding file recovery tool that has options to track metadata for files so file names and other information about files can be easily recovered along with the data. Disk Drill is fairly robust, and it's free (at least for now while it's being developed).

Maintenance
The only maintenance updates this week are to TinkerTool System and Cocktail, both of which are popular options for managing system caches and other temporary files that can contribute to slowdowns and odd application problems if they get corrupted.

TinkerTool System's update this week includes a number of new features for managing recent folders, folder hierarchies, and diagnostic logs of the Mac App Store. In addition it fixes problems with the user interface and an error with the production date not showing properly for newer Macs (similar to the Temperature and Hardware Monitor updates this week), and addresses a problem with cleaning some crash logs. TinkerTool System is $14.00 for a license.

Cocktail's update is a smaller one that addresses some compatibility problems with Safari extensions as well as adding further support for OS X 10.6.7 and Automator. Cocktail is $14.95 after the free trial period.



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About the author

    Topher, an avid Mac user for the past 15 years, has been a contributing author to MacFixIt since the spring of 2008. One of his passions is troubleshooting Mac problems and making the best use of Macs and Apple hardware at home and in the workplace.

     

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