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Mac OS X 10.3.4 (#3): Radeon 9800 issues; Yet another haxie warning; Strange CUPS behavior, more

Mac OS X 10.3.4 (#3): Radeon 9800 issues; Yet another haxie warning; Strange CUPS behavior, more

Radeon 9800 issues Several users are reporting that DVD display glitches with the ATI Radeon 9800 Pro OEM which were previously fixed are back in Mac OS X 10.3.4.

One reader writes "I have experienced the same thing using both DVDSP3 and DVDPlayer. Also note that the ATI DVD Hotfix will no longer install on OS X 10.3.4. "

Stickies 'minimize window' greyed out Stickies "minimize windows" is greyed out in the windows menu with the Update to 10.3.4. The Command M does nothing.

However, as Irene Stern Friedman points out, you can minimize by double clicking on the dark bar at the top of a sticky-note.

Yet another haxie warning In its "read before installing" document, Apple states:

" You may experience unexpected results if you have installed third-party system software modifications, or if you have modified the operating system through other means. This precautionary statement does not apply to the normal installation of application software."

While a number of uses may mistakenly finger haxies as the culprit for troubleshooting issues that manifest after the Mac OS X 10.3.4 update, we have seen direct links to interface issues in Safari and other apps, login issues, and more. Further, there is no harm in temporarily removing the haxies and restarting to check for improvement.

That said, many users have several haxies installed and are experiencing no problems after the update:

MacFixIt reader Thomas writes "The following haxies were installed and active during install: FruitMenu, Xounds, AudioHijack-Server, iChatAlchemyTVPatch, ParanoidAndroid, WindowShadeX.

"I keep my system maintained using Cocktail's Pilot, I checked/repaired permissions prior to install (2 repaired) and after install (nothing). The whole system appears to be a bit snappier. I'm a happy camper."

Disaster recovery: FireWire target disk mode One MacFixIt reader who was unable to startup after applying the Mac OS X 10.3.4 updater noted that starting up from another Mac in FireWire target disk mode (hold down the "T" key during startup on the target Mac) then re-enabling journaling with DIsk Utility allowed proper startup:

"Installer hung near the end of the installation. After a forced restart hung at boot panel / login panel. After a dozen retries using command S to repair and running DiskWarrior it might finally finish start up only to give me the spinning beach ball.

"Could not start up using Jaguar install disk.

"Finally using target disk mode I ran repairs using Disk Utility and turned journaling back on. After that all appears to be well. First thing I did was run Cocktail to repair permissions and re-prebind etc. Update was actually installed it turned out."

Finder gone Byron Davies reports a rare problem for which we are seeking further confirmation:

"I ran the installer, but got a nasty crash on restart, with a unix console scrolling in the background and the grey panel in the middle telling me in multiple languages that I needed to restart. Once I restarted, I had no Finder. I mean, NO Finder. Every other application works fine, disk and permissions show no repairs needed, but my desktop is completely empty. When I click and hold Finder in the dock, it shows 'Finder Not Running.' Multiple restarts didn't help."

'Connect to Server' security warning MacFixIt reader Brent reports that since the Mac OS X 10.3.4 upgrade, all three of his machines exhibit the following behavior:

"When I try to mount other Macs via the "Connect to server", I get the following message: 'Can't make a secure connection to YourServer. The server YourServer does not support secure connections via SSH. To connect with reduced security, click Continue.' I have SSH enabled, can login remotely via SSH. Was it always the case that mounting via afp was insecure and now Apple is just letting me know?"

Apple menu not working, restart via Terminal to remedy Some users have reported that after updating to Mac OS X 10.3.4, the Apple Menu stopped working. One user was able to resolve the issue by restarting directly from the Terminal (the Apple menu contains direct access to restart and shutdown functions).

Jason Kacmarski writes "I first noticed it because I went to 'About this mac," beach-balled for about 15 seconds, then came back but nothing happened. I figured a restart would do the trick, unfortunately, shutdown and restart weren't working either since they're in the Apple menu. [...] Not being a fan of hard rebooting, I went to the terminal. In case anyone's curious the command for a restart is 'sudo shutdown -r now' without quotes of course and you'll need an admin password for sudo. This worked and upon rebooting everything was back to normal. My first ever issue with an OS X update."

Strange behavior from CUPS; fix Mac OS X's built-in CUPS (Common UNIX Printing System) is exhibiting strange behavior for some users, which was also seen with some prior Mac OS X upgrades, where if the user wants to modify printers a password prompt appears, but no password is accepted.

MacFixIt reader Lysikrates has a Terminal-based workaround that he says resolved the issue on four separate Macs:

"I found that the security updater saved a copy of the old cupsd.conf as cupsd.conf.applesaved. If I reinstated the old copy of cupsd.conf and restarted CUPS, I had the same access to the administrative functions as before.
  • cd /etc/cups
  • sudo mv cupsd.conf cupsd.conf.securitybak
  • sudo mv cupsd.conf.applesaved cupsd.conf
  • sudo killall -HUP cupsd

"This will back up the newly installed cupsd.conf for use when someone figures out what needs changing in that file to allow an "admin" user to get access. It will then replace the original cupsd.conf file and restart the CUPS daemon. "

AirPort Extreme conflict with >1GB RAM: fixed or not? Yesterday we reported that some users were having fewer AirPort reception problems on systems with more than 1 GB of RAM after applying the Mac OS X 10.3.4 update. Some users, however, are still experiencing problems:

MacFixIt reader Steve Calvin writes "I just wanted to let you know that this problem doesn't seem to be fixed with the new update 10.3.4 (in my experience). Judging by the posts in apple's forums it appears that the problem isn't just with Powerbooks as some have thought, and many problems people are experiencing with airport dropping the connection and requiring a reboot may be this same issue."

Monitor refresh rate settings not working Jay Majer reports that his display refresh settings cannot be changed after updating to Mac OS X 10.3.4: "First problem I've ever had with 10.3.4. Display settings are stuck at 75Hz. All the other frequencies are grayed out. This is with a Quicksilver G4 and ViewSonic A95f display."

Internet connection gone: repairing permissions can fix Several users have reported loss of network activity after the Mac OS X 10.3.4 update. For some, the solution may be as simple as repairing permissions with Apple's Disk Utility:

One reader writes "I too, lost my internet connections for a very short while. Everything was sluggish. As soon as repaired permissions everything was just fine. Same on all three computers in my home."

Some problems may be caused by SIIG cards If you have an SIIG ATA expansion card installed and are experiencing issues after the Mac OS X 10.3.4 update, you may want to try temporarily removing the card.

MacFixIt reader Gary Hudson writes "I downloaded and installed Mac OS X 10.3.4 last night via Software Update. Prior to updating I repaired permissions. When the update completed, I restarted the system, logged in, repaired permissions again and (for good measure) restarted. That?s when things got interesting. I got the grey screen with the Apple logo and the spinning spokes, then the Apple logo changed to a circle with a slash through it. The OS never started. Time to open the case. [...] Last week I installed a SIIG UltraATA 133 card in hopes of improving performance for disk-intensive tasks. The Deskstar went on port #1 of the card?the WD on port #2. I also re-jumpered both drives to cable select. Everything worked fine except for some annoying lags waking from deep sleep and the fact that Apple System Profiler identified both of these ATA drives as SCSI.

"Suspecting that the SIIG card might be the problem, I removed it and reconnected both drives to the motherboard interface connector. I left the jumper settings at cable select for both drives. On restart everything ran normally. "

Individual application launch, operation issues

One of the best first-steps for resolving application launch issues after a major Mac OS X update is to use the Apple Disk Utility (located in Applications/Utilities) to repair permissions. Also, deleting offending applications' .plist files (located in ~/System/Preferences) has worked to resolve the issues on a number of occasions.

That said, here are some of the application-specific issues readers have noticed since the 10.3.4 update (note that these problems are not universal, and in-house we have been able to launch all of the following applications) :

iTunes not launching One reader writes "After I installed 10.3.4 on my dual USD iBook (500 Mhz), iTunes refuses to launch.  I've tried to Repair Permissions, but this doesn't seem to work.  Has anyone else encountered this same problem?  All other applications seem to work just fine so far."

WorldBook 2003 not launching Josh Camp writes "I just updated to 10.3.4 and World Book 2003 will no longer launch, neither will World Book Atlas. I reinstalled World Book but nothing changed." [Note that there is a Panther update for WorldBook that should be installed by any Mac OS X 10.3.x users]

Adobe Photoshop Elements 2.0 not launching Phyllis Gallimore reports similar problems with Adobe's consumer photo editing program: "This program won't launch after update. just hangs on 'initializing.' and then when i go to 'force quit,' it says 'not responding' beside it."

FireFox freezes One reader is having issues with the Firefox Web browser: "I am having trouble with Firefox. Spinning pointer and had to restart. I have made Firefox the default browser until today, it wouldn't work properly. Problems began after the 10.3.4 update."


Applications launching faster ... really Yesterday we noted that several readers were reporting enhanced application launch speed after Mac OS X 10.3.4. According to a few reader reports and other sources, this may be an improvement that Apple knowingly implemented, but simply did not document:

Adam Williams writes "In beta releases of Mac OS X 10.3.4, one of the biggest listed changes was that apple made a change that would improve the launching of apps that were not prebound. Surprising they pulled this change from the final releases notes as it was in every beta as a significant part of test to see if apps were launching faster or at all. So for once the claims of faster app launchings are actually true."

Long links in now work Guy Thompson is one of the many readers who is finally able to use long URL and e-mail links in Apple's

"The 10.3.4 update states that it 'Addresses a Mail issue in which a long address (URL) in a Mac OS X Panther Mail message may not open in your Web browser when you click it.'"

" have have had this problem for quite a while, and switched to Thunderbird because it annoyed me so much. After updating to 10.3.4 and sending 4 long links to two friends who never were able to use my links, I can say that it appears that this problem has been fixed. I will return to using and hopefully this problem does not surface again."

Cooler running PowerBooks with less fan activity Yesterday we reported that the Mac OS X 10.3.4 update causes fans to run more frequently in PowerBooks and iBooks for some users.

We've since received conflicting reports, indicating that less fan activity is taking place:

MacFixIt reader Carlos writes "My Powerbook seems to run quieter! I recently updated the PB's HD with a 60GB one, running at 5400 Mhz and it was noisier and hotter than the original Apple one: well, since yesterday it does not heat up as much (running pretty much the same apps), and the fans seem to be taking a nap: much cooler now! (literally!)."

Bryan Clark adds "I installed the 10.3.4 update last night on my 867 G4 15? Powerbook and have not noticed any increase in fan activity or heating, even when running processor intensive activities."

In-house, our PowerBook G4 12" seems to have less fan activity and lower underside heat under Mac OS X 10.3.4 than with Mac OS X 10.3.3. Please let us know if you're experiencing similar results.

Safari scrolling fixed David Oshel reports that the cosmetic overlapping line bug in Safari scrolling seems to be fixed.

  • Panther update for WorldBo...
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