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Troubleshooting Mac OS X 10.3.2: More on printing issues; Parallel to USB connector problems; more

Troubleshooting Mac OS X 10.3.2: More on printing issues; Parallel to USB connector problems; more

More on printing issues We continue to receive a significant number of reports regarding printing problems under Mac OS X 10.3.2, particularly with Hewlett Packard 5-series laser printers.

Al Mateczun and some other readers are experiencing system stalls when attempting to print to HP devices. In Mateczun's case, repairing permissions with Apple's Disk Utility did the trick "The worst problem has been with printing on a HP Laserjet 2100M. On attempting to print on a local ethernet connection [...] I got a system hang that never ended. [...] I tried a soft reset, but the system hung with the spinning little clock dial never stopping. A hard shutdown with the power switch was necessary, and then the startup hung again.

"[...] Well, I said to myself, guess I'll repair permissions again, even though I had just done that after 10.3.2 installation ( with numerous repairs necessary, maybe 150 at that time). Wow, about 100 additional repairs were necessary, mainly to Library/printer/ HP--- type of addresses. So the system now seems to be working and printing OK."

Alan Holloway describes an odd issue that has not been separately confirmed where output from AppleWorks is misaligned on his HP 5MP after upgrading to Mac OS X 10.3.2: "I have had problems printing on my old HP 5MP. Recently, I opened an AppleWorks 6.2.7 file in order to update some data files. When I tried to print the new file, the rows of numbers I had listed printed out differently than they appeared on my video screen. What I saw was not what I got."

Parallel to USB connector problems Based on over a dozen reports, we have all but confirmed that Parallel to USB connectors (popular for a number of networked/workgroup HP printers that lack a standard USB connector) are defunct with Mac OS X 10.3.2 - at least with some drivers/printer models.

MacFixIt reader Scott writes "After installing Mac OS X10.3.2 my computer fails to recognize my HP 5MP laser printer. It has worked once or twice since the install, but mostly, print center says "printer not responding" rebooting sometimes makes the printer get one page through. I tried to remove the printer and re-add it, but not it can't find the printer at all. One point -- my 5MP is connected via a USB - Parrallel connector."

It seems that the USB input/output component update included with Mac OS X 10.3.2 breaks these adapters under most circumstances. Gerry Conway adds:

"I can no longer print properly through a USB-to-Parallel adapter on my office HP Laserjet 4MP -- the print job is never marked complete, and only rebooting the computer and restarting the printer clears the job, allowing another job to be printed. Tracking the culprits, I notice that IOUSBHub.kext and IOUSBHid.kext, part of IOUSBFamily.kext, are both updated with a 12/11/03 creation date."

If you are having these problems, you may want to try downgrading the IOUSBFamily.kext files to the versions included with Mac OS X 10.3.1. These files are located in /System/Library/Extensions.

In fact, reverting to an older version of the IOUSBFamily.kext file was a workaround we reported several months ago for a processor drain problem with HP printers under Mac OS X 10.2.x (Jaguar), which was later published by HP's technical support team.

Apple maintains a recent history of IOUSB versions at: ftp://ftp.apple.com/developer/Development_Kits/Mac_OS_USB

However, until we track down some more information on this issue, it might not be a good idea to downgrade your IOUSB component - doing so can not only reverse enhancements delivered by Mac OS X 10.3.2, but also cause problems with other USB devices.

More on slow startup times Users continue to experiment with ways to get around the sometimes dramatically longer boot process that is apparent after upgrading to Mac OS X 10.3.2.

MacFixIt reader Barry writes "I booted my 15" PowerBook G4 1.25Ghz single user from an external 10.3.1 firewire drive. I then immediately rebooted into 10.3.2 from the internal drive. The slow behavior went away. I was able to confirm this with both temperature readings [Ed.- We're not sure if this means that temperatures are once again at Mac OS X 10.3.1 levels, which would mean that the fans are running less frequently as well] and by the change in Xbench scores."

Another reader writes "I've stumbled upon a fix for the double/triple bootup time. I cloned my internal drive to an external drive via Carbon Copy Cloner. I then threw away the preferences located in the folder: computer/library/preferences on the cloned drive. After rebooting with the cloned external drive, my bootup time was back to the normal speed."

Application Enhancer If you are experiencing random crashes or stability problems after upgrading to Mac OS X 10.3.2, you may want to try temporarily removing Unsanity's APE (application enhancer) mechanism via the included unisntall utility.

MacFixIt reader Baraka writes "I started to get frequent crashes in a variety of apps. Upon examining the crash report, the last item was consistently Application Enhancer Framework. I uninstalled APE 1.4.1, and so far I'm not crashing anymore."

Passwords and caps Yesterday we reported problems logging in after upgrading to Mac OS X 10.3.2. For some users, the traditional, expected password is not able to warrant access. There are a few theories for why this is happening:

Change to the ADBKeyboard driver MacFixIt reader Barry points out that the AppleADBKeyboard driver in Mac OS X 10.3.2 now checks the state of the LEDs on start to see if the capslock LED is lit.

"If it is, the driver assumes that the capslock key is toggled. Normally, the login panel will show a little icon saying that the capslock key is pressed. Maybe this icon isn't showing on some systems. A user might want to toggle the capslock key once, let the system go back to sleep and then try again. Of course this hypothesis is only applicable to machines waking from sleep, not from power off."

Older passwords working Mike Newman writes "After updating a 17" iMac to 10.3.2 I was unable to log in. My long-time password kept getting rejected. When the 'hint' appeared following my third try, I found out why. The hint shown was for a password I hadn't used for months and couldn't even remember. I had to log in as root, change my password from there and then logging in as myself worked fine. I did not experience this odd anomaly on either of the other two machines I updated to 10.3.2."

Part of the keyboard not working Michael Bach also could not log in after upgrading to Mac OS X 10.3.2, and found that part of his keyboard actually was not functioning: "Tried the guest account (has empty password), all fine. Found that the left half of the keyboard does not react! Nothing would happen for "a" through "h", and then jk... would work. That's why I had not been able to log in. Reboot, same problem. Reboot with holding "shift": this forces fsck (takes long), and then proceeds into "safe boot". And then it worked, and stayed so since (no fan problem here). So maybe safe-booting might alleviate other problems too..."

It is possible that on some systems, the AppleADBKeyboard driver becomes corrupt or otherwise damaged during installation. Since the standalone installer for Mac OS X 10.3.2 is inherently a combo updater, you may want to try re-applying the update to potentially overwrite a faulty installation.

Possible conflict between Mail.app and Toast We are gathering information on an issue where Apple's Mail.app will hang on launch when certain components of the mastering software Toast are installed.

Specifically, Toast-related contextual menu items located in the folder /Library/Contextual Menu Items seem to be causing problems. Removing the file containing the name "Toast" has resolved this issue for a number of readers.

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