Our utilities update report is a list of updates for Mac utilities that have been released in the past week. Though a utility 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 updates for maintenance and benchmarking utilities, as well as a couple of filesystem utilities.
While MacPilot is more than just a maintenance utility, it contains a number of cache cleaning and optimization routines that are included in most maintenance packages. The program's latest update adds new features for managing unused preference files as well as an option to disable the Spotlight menu in Snow Leopard. The update also fixes issues with rebuilding the launch services in Snow Leopard, problems with using special characters in authentication passwords, and settings for the sudden motion sensors. MacPilot is a $19.95 utility after the 15-day trial.
In benchmarking utilities, Geekbench is useful for testing the performance of numerous Macs, and includes the same tests for 32-bit systems, 64-bit systems, and Rosetta/PowerPC. The utility has been updated to fix a "build expired" error that may pop up for some users. Geekbench is $19.95 for a license.
There are two filesystem-related utilities that were updated this week. Disk Drill is a fairly robust file recovery system that actively updates an index so file names and other attributes can be preserved during the recovery process. The utility is currently free while it is in development, and has been updated to include an uninstaller and better navigation of the application's features. In addition it adds options to manage multiple installations of OS X, warn users of potential confusion in the data recovery process, and add better support for external drives.
The second filesystem utility updated this week is Carbon Copy Cloner, which is $10 donationware and can be used to create full copies of mounted hard disks. The utility has been updated to fix errors relating to memory allocation for ACLs that appeared in OS X 10.6.5, and fixes an error for Tiger users where destination menus were not fully populated. A number of other minor bugs and errors have also been addressed.