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Troubleshooting Mac OS X 10.3.x (#16): ATA problems; Simultaneous use of iTunes, Classic; Long name data loss; more

Troubleshooting Mac OS X 10.3.x (#16): ATA problems; Simultaneous use of iTunes, Classic; Long name data loss; more

Acard ATA problems Drives connected to Acard ATA 133 controllers can display a problem under Mac OS X 10.3.x where the volumes are recognized by the system as removable media.

This means that the drives connected to the PCI card can be accidentally "ejected" (unmounted) through the Finder. If you unmount a connected drive and want to re-mount it without restarting, you can use Apple's Disk Utility to do so.

Separately, MacFixIt reader Johnny Ring reports read/write issues with a Maxtor drive attached through an Acard controller:

"I recently upgraded my Mac from 10.2.8 to Panther and everything went just fine. So I thought until I started to have problem with an internal Maxtor ATA 160 GB hard drive. Suddenly the hard drive had trouble capturing video in iMovie, it would capture a few seconds and then just stop. It also sounded very strange, like it couldn't read from the drive. [...]

"After successfully copying all files to another hard drive (which took forever by the way) I started Apple Disk Utilities and started formatting the drive [...] but halfway through the process the formatting stopped and the drive got greyish in the sidebar and wasn't mounted in the Finder. There where no problem to start over again but I got the same result after a few tries. [...]

"It was now time to dig into the inside of my Mac and so I did. I saw that the drive was the one which was connected to my Acard ATA133 IDE PCI-card so I switched the cable to the remaining internal IDE port on the motherboard. I then started my Mac again and did another try formatting the drive and this time it was more successful. Now I can edit and capture video in iMovie again and the drive is in the same shape as it was before the upgrade."

Simultaneous use of iTunes, Classic not permitted Mac OS X 10.3.x will not allow multiple users to simultaneously run iTunes, nor will it allow multiple users to simultaneously use the Classic environment.

So far we have not been able to isolate a workaround.

Note that in order to share your iTunes music library across multiple accounts, you will simply need to locate your music folder at the top level of your hard drive, or in the "/Users/Shared" folder.

Also, some users have suggested creating a designated, password-free Classic account that each user can access separately.

DNS hosts not resolving We've begun to receive several reports of sporadic problems resolving DNS hosts after upgrading to Mac OS X 10.3.x. MacFixIt reader Gerrit's experience is typical of the problem:

"Basically, I'll try to check my email or hit a website, and I will get an error saying the domain is invalid or the site can't be found. The same network connection will work fine under Jaguar or Windows XP, but Panther consistently has trouble.

"What makes this even more strange is that it happens on a per-application basis: So Safari will start insisting it can't find a site, but Camino will load it just find (or vice-versa.) Restarting the affected app seems to help it 'forget' that the site cannot be found.

"The errors seem to come up whether I connect via the internal modem or an Airport connection."

Some users have had success eliminating this problem by deleting their DNS entries from the System Preferences Network pane, restarting, and then re-entering the information.

Other readers have been able to solve the issue by navigating to /Library/Preferences/SystemConfiguration and deleting the files NetworkInterfaces.plist, and preferences.plist.

Discrepancy on LaCie FireWire serial numbers; Micronet statement Make sure to re-check the serial number on your LaCie FireWire hard drive to determine whether or not it is included in LaCie's official warning regarding Panther. The drives officially affected are:

d2 USB 2.0 and FireWire 800 Hard Drives and Big Disk products: serial numbers 1312xxxxx to 1339xxxxx and; serial numbers 0312xxxxx to 0339xxxxx; shipped from April 2003 to September 30, 2003

However, some users report that there is an extra "0" at the beginning of the number. For instance, if you have a drive marked 01336xxxx, it is within the affected serial number range.

Separately, MicroNet has now issued a statement and a firmware update to address its case of the Mac OS X 10.3.x vs. FireWire issue:

"All of MicroNet and Fantom Drives products are tested using the most rigorous methods available, and our IEEE1394A FireWire 400 products have not exhibited any data loss during testing with Panther both internally and externally. MicroNet Platinum combo FireWire 800/USB 2.0 drive require Firmware revision 1.05 to correct this problem."

Long name data loss bug Users in the ArsTechnica forums are reporting a potentially serious bug where attempting to save files with extremely long (1000 character) names results in data loss. Poster sheytan writes:

"[...] this one affects ALL Cocoa apps. If you try to save a file with a name that is much too long (say, 1000 characters), OSX will apparently suffer some kind of buffer overflow, and overwrite the folder you're trying to save that file into. It will warn you that it might overwrite something, but if you're not paying attention or if you instinctively hi enter... You could potentially completely overwrite a partition (obviously not the system drive for permission reasons, but any partition), if you're saving at the root of that partition."

Based on initial testing of this issue, it appears unlikely that data destroyed in this manner will be easily recoverable with tools like Prosoft's Data Rescue X.

Workaround for some HP duplex printers We previously reported problems printing in duplex mode with some HP printers. Now MacFixIt reader Dominic Dunlop reports a tech support-sanctioned workaround:

"Like other readers, I found that my HP DeskJet 970 Cxi printer would not print double-sided (duplex) onto A4-sized paper with the 2.3.1 driver software shipped with Mac OS X 10.3, Panther. I took this up with HP support, and (after some to-ing and fro-ing) they told me that I could use duplex printing if and only if I had set the paper size to A4 in the Page Setup dialog box for the HP printer itself. [...] Setting the paper size to A4 for "Any Printer" in the page set-up dialogue (or making it to default to A4 using the Print & Fax System Preferences) is not enough."

Sleep button not working We've now received several notes of confirmation for a problem where the Sleep button displayed in the login window cannot be turned off.

Generally, you can turn this button off by going to the Users --> Login Items pane of System Preferences, where there is an option to disable Shutdown, Restart and Sleep buttons. Shutdown and Restart can be properly hidden, but users are having problems making the sleep option go away.

Forward faxes Rod Yager writes "Having developed an interest in the problems associated with making email forwarding of faxes work in Panther, I've written a small application which:

  1. detects and if necessary fixes the common configuration problems
  2. allows users to specify the email address from which the forwarded faxes come
  3. allows users to optionally specify an SMTP server to use for forwarding
  4. provides the ability to test the setup by simulating the receipt of a fax.

You can obtain the software by e-mailing: FaxEmailHelper@rwts.com.au

Feedback? Late-breakers@macfixit.com.

Resources
  • Firmware revision 1.05
  • ArsTechnica forums
  • FaxEmailHelper@rwts.com.au
  • Late-breakers@macfixit.com
  • More from Late-Breakers