Our Weekly Utilities Update report is a list of all the updates for many Mac utilities that have been released in the past week. Though utilities can be any tool that helps you perform a routine task (including image manipulation and synchronization), our focus in this column is to bring you those tools that help in troubleshooting Mac hardware and software problems. This week there are a few maintenance-related updates, one or two network and hardware monitoring updates, and a few others to provide package management and scanning support.
This week we have a few updates in common Maintenance utilities, which we recommend everyone have at least one of for running IceClean 3.4.3 (freeware) has been updated to fix a couple of bugs in the update prebindings routine (now called "update_dyld_shared_cache" in Snow Leopard). Another maintenance utility, Snow Leopard Cache Cleaner 5.0.8 ($9.99) has seen a small point release to address compatibility with OS 10.6.4, so if you are having problems with the program running after the OS update you might consider updating.whenever needed.
Cocktail for Snow Leopard 4.7.5 ($14.95) has also been updated to add OS X 10.6.4 compatibility. In addition, it provides more support and for the latest and common Web browsers as well as detecting and clearing some more trojan horse code.
Lastly, MacPilot 4.0.2 ($19.95) has been released with new UI features as well as better implementation of administrative permissions in the file browser. It also fixes bugs with the file browser and disk list item duplication when refreshing the list.
In networking utilities, the InterMapper diagnostics and monitoring utility along with its "Remote Access" utility, have been updated to version 5.3.1 to fix bugs with its license activation and crashes when interacting with some Cisco switches. The program is an IT/Enterprise level utility that costs $495 for the monitor and $245 for the remote utility.
If you use your laptop in wifi hotspots, especially where there are multiple access points, the utility AirRadar 1.3 ($19.95) may be useful (especially on OS 10.5 or earlier where the WiFi menu does not have signal strength indicators) to locate available networks. The utility has been updated to show the spec type for found WiFi network, and fixes a bug with vendor IDs, incorrect list selection types for found networks, and crashes during reloading.
Only one hardware-related utility has been updated this week. CheckUp ($35.00) and it's corresponding CheckUp Remote ($65.00) utility have been updated to version 2.6.3 to support the new MacBook and Mac Mini systems from Apple, along with compatibility with OS X 10.6.4.
Drivers and Other
One utility we recommend for people who have scanning problems either with current scanners, or who are trying to get an old and seemingly unsupported scanner to work, is VueScan. However, there is another option ExactScan ($89.00) which does a similar thing, supporting over 200 models and providing a number of scanning options with these models. The program has been updated to version 2.11, though no specific information on the update's details is available.
If you use the MacPorts package handling utility, the program has been updated to version 1.9.1, fixing a few minor compatibility bugs.