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Troubleshooting Mac OS X 10.3.x: Ethernet speed issues; Address Book glitches; possible fix for Mail crashing due to junk filter

Troubleshooting Mac OS X 10.3.x: Ethernet speed issues; Address Book glitches; possible fix for Mail crashing due to junk filter

Ethernet speed issues We continue to receive follow-ups regarding issues with Ethernet speed under Panther. Most of these reports focus on issues of full- vs. half-duplex. MacFixIt reader Phill Tejada reports:

"We've just begun experiencing a problem on 100BaseT network drops that are set to full-duplex. The network transfer rate is 10 times less than it should be. The Mac does not sense that it is full-duplex and sets the Ethernet interface to half-duplex. If we set the Mac manually to full-duplex, we lose network connectivity. If we force the router/switch to 100 half-duplex, the transfer rates return to normal... Has anyone ever seen a Mac operate at 100BaseT full-duplex?"

Similarly, reader Peter Scordamaglia notes: "I think this has basically been confirmed thru the Apple community online...I have a PowerMac 9600 with an Asante EtherFast 10/100 card under OS X Server. The will only run at 10Mbit under 10.3 (1 hours for a Gig of data). The Linksys switch and the Card show a 100Mbit LED (Full Duplex) but if i do a IFCONFIG the card only shows as being at a 10baseT and it feels like 1 (excruciating is a word)"

Address Book "disappearing contacts" glitch Yesterday we covered an issue with Panther's Address Book where contacts seem to simply disappear. We've received a number of follow-ups from readers on this issue, indicating that for some users, this isn't a new issue; however, there appears to be a workaround. Reader James Tarpley writes:

"The glitch with Address Book started with the initial upgrade to Panther. The failure to display the Address Book contents is sporadic -- I haven't determined a commonalty of causal issues. The problem is irritating, but the solution is simple: quit Address Book and immediately re-open. Sometimes this step has to be repeated more than once; however, eventually the contents are correctly displayed."

No "reverse lookup" searching in Address Book On a different Address Book note, reader Nick Romano points out that you can't search the Address Book by phone number (a "reverse lookup"). We've confirmed this here at MacFixIt; oddly enough, entering a number sometimes returns results, but never accurate ones.

Possible fix for Mail crashing due to junk filter We previously covered a number of reports of problems with Mail's junk mail filter where Mail would crash. MacFixIt reader Kevin Hawkins provides a suggested solution that he found on Apple's Discussions forums:

  1. Make sure there are no important messages in your Junk folder.
  2. In Mail, choose Mailbox -> Erase Junk Mail, and confirm that you want to delete Junk messages.
  3. Open Mail preferences, and in the Junk Mail screen, enable Training mode (the "Leave it in my Inbox, but indicate it is Junk Mail (Training)" option).
  4. Quit Mail.
  5. In the Finder, locate the folder ~/Library/Caches/Mail and drag it to the Desktop.
  6. Launch Mail again, and turn Training mode off (the "Move it to the Junk mailbox (Automatic)" option). This will recreate the Junk folder in Mail.
If this doesn't work, you can quit Mail and restore the Mail cache folder on your Desktop to its original location. If it works, you can delete that folder altogether.

Panther issues or solutions? Drop us an email at

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