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Mac OS X 10.3.3 (#10): Re-applying combo updater can resolve USB 2.0 issues; FireWire problems; more

Mac OS X 10.3.3 (#10): Re-applying combo updater can resolve USB 2.0 issues; FireWire problems; more

Re-applying combo updater can resolve USB 2.0 issues We previously reported a host of USB 2.0 issues under Mac OS X 10.3.3, including inability to mount, problems transferring large files and more.

It now seems, based on a handful of reader reports, that the tried and true method of re-applying the Mac OS X 10.3.3 combo updater resolves USB 2.0 issues in some cases.

Thomas Santee writes "I have a G4 iBook. After using Software Update to update to 10.3.3 my bus-powered USB 2.0 external hard drive would stall when trying to copy large files to the internal hard drive. Repairing permissions and running DiskWarrior showed no problems. I decided to download the 10.3.3 updater from Apple and reinstall it over my existing install. I thought it would simply report that the update was already installed, but it proceeded to go through the entire process including a very long optimization. Now my external USB 2 drive copies files fine. I suggested this on the Apple's iBook discussion board to a user who was have numerous USB troubles. He reported that installing the updater on top of the existing 10.3.3 fixed all his USB troubles except for the stall when copying files from his external hard drive to his internal drive."

More on FireWire problems Continuing our coverage of problems booting from and mounting FireWire drives after updating to Mac OS X 10.3.3, new reader reports indicate that using a different FireWire connection point - either a PCMCIA card or PCI card - results in proper operation while the built-in FireWire ports do not function.

Also, it appears that while FireWire drives will not mount or be recognizable via any other route for some Mac OS X 10.3.3 upgraders, power is still being delivered through the bus.

Dean Takemori writes "I've just run into this problem. My firewire drives don't mount when attached to my Powerbook 17". It worked fine before updating to 10.3.3, but now neither a bus powered nor externally powered drive will power up or mount. My iPod doesn't mount or recharge either.

"Oddly, if I insert an old ADS Firewire PCMCIA card, I can attach drives and an iPod to it, and everything works just fine.

"Even worse, System Profiler only sees the Firewire 800 bus when I click on Hardware->Firewire.

"Apple Hardware Test reports a "2PFW/1/22: Firewire" error. [Ed.- If you are experiencing a similar problem, please try running Apple's Hardware Test CD and let us know your results]

Meanwhile, Christophe Eeckels has a list of specific Mac OS X 10.3.3-related FireWire issues on his slot-loading iMac:

  • System profiler documents FireWire as "no information available";
  • Apple Hardware Test says FireWire is "afwezig", which means "absent" in Dutch;
  • FireWire disks don't mount;
  • Disk Utility does not see them;
  • The external disks do not appear when holding down the Option key at startup time;
  • Both FireWire interfaces are inoperable, though the FireWire drives do receive power from the interfaces.

PDF preview rendering crash, fixes We continue to cover a problem with the preview function in the Finder when attempting to render miniature versions of large PDF files - which can result in a Finder crash.

We previously noted that if a PDF file that causes the crash is copied out of its original directory via the GUI, the copied file will also cause the crash. However, if the PDF file is copied via the "cp" command in the Terminal, it appears that the copy will not cause the crash.

This indicates that there could be a problem in the resource fork of the PDF. "cp" from the terminal does not copy this part of the file, which is responsible for creator/type and other resources associated with the file.

Doug Smith nots that here is an easy way to see if resource forks are the cause of the PDF preview crash (or any other problem). The resource fork is a hidden file based on the original filename as follows:

  • original: filename.txt
  • resource fork: ._filename.txt

"Just open a terminal window to the directory with the original file and type:

  • rm ._filename.txt

"And the resource fork is gone! I do this all the time when copying mp3 files to an RCA Lyra mp3 player. The player chokes on resource forks so I manually remove them as described above. To remove all the resource forks in a directory use:

  • rm ._*

"But be careful to not to make a space before the * or all the files in the directory will be deleted. The is necessary to prevent removal of all files whose second character is _ ."

Apparent fix for D-Link 624 router DHCP problem Last week we reported a problem Mac OS X 10.3.3 upgrade and D-link DI 624 router where the device loses DHCP connection and refuses to renew.

Irwin Walot reports that a fix has been posted to D-Link's site: "E-mailed customer support at D-link several times. Gist of reply after several queries was that router must be bad, call and get RMA. Called customer support and was shuttled to several techs, who did not have a fix for my DHCP problem. Checked the D-link support site a final time before giving up and there was a new firmware update-2.41 "fixes DHCP bug" that was just posted. The firmware upgrade fixed the problem. They should probably tell their support staff."

You can obtain the firmware update by visiting D-Link's technical support site, and choosing the DI 624 router from the pull-down menu.

Full screen app improvement MacFixIt reader Alan reports a significant improvement in the way his PowerBook handles full-screen applications after the Mac OS X 10.3.3 update:

"Good news to report. After installing 10.3.3 my titanium power book now functions normally on full screen apps such as games and the itunes visualizer. Finally cured. Before this all full screen apps played sound but the screen went black."

Strange fan error on G5s We've received a few reports of strange errors in /var/log/system.log since updating G5s to Mac OS X 10.3.3, namely:

"IOPlatformControl::registerDriver Control Driver AppleK2Fan did not supply current-value, using default"

One reader who has experienced this issue writes "I've opened the case and verified that all five fans are spinning. The Apple Hardware Test Extended did not show any problems whatsoever. Google search on 'AppleK2Fan' and 'kernel: Fan failure!' did not produce any useful troubleshooting tips."

If you're having a similar problem, drop us a line at

  • Mac OS X 10.3.3 combo upda...
  • let us know
  • technical support site
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