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Mac OS 8.5 due in September

Mac OS 8.5, previously known as Allegro, will start to ship by "late in the third quarter," according to Apple executives.

    NEW YORK--Mac OS 8.5, previously known as Allegro, will start to ship by "late in the third quarter," according to Apple Computer executives here at the Macworld trade show, which means the software ought to be in customers' hands by September.

    That would be a slight delay from the most recent roadmap, but the Mac faithful at ground zero are in an upbeat mood.

    Apple OS release dates
    Operating system Version Release date
    Mac OS 8.5 3Q '98
    Mac OS 8.6 1Q '99
    Mac OS "Sonata" 3Q '99
    Rhapsody developer release May '98
    Rhapsody customer release 3Q '98
    Mac OS X developer release early '99
    Mac OS X customer release 3Q '99
    Source: Apple Computer
    In his keynote today, acting CEO Steve Jobs told the crowd in the Jacob Javitz Convention Center that the company will report a third-quarter profit and that software developers are returning to the platform.

    The upgrade will be the third revision to the Mac OS in the last 15 months. Mac OS 8 debuted in July 1997, while 8.1 came out in January of this year. Apple made much of the fact that both were released on time.

    Apple is demonstrating Mac OS 8.5 here in New York. Allegro's features include faster performance when saving files over the network--up to three times faster, according to Apple--and improved file search functionality.

    For instance, from a single dialog box, a user could search files by content and search the Internet using several different engines, such as Excite and HotBot, simultaneously. The search results can be summarized without opening up the Web pages, saving download time.

    "Allegro will be a significant release," Peter Lowe, product line manager for the Mac OS, previously told CNET NEWS.COM.

    "We will focus squarely on performance and on making sure the Mac OS is the most efficient OS we can deliver. We will work to extend our leadership in the user interface experience and further integrate the Internet [into the OS]," Lowe said in January.

    At the time, Apple stated that Allegro would come out in the middle of the year. In January of 1997, Apple had said that Allegro, which was then officially classified an upgrade to the System 7 family, would come out in early 1998.