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News Archive for July 2nd-3rd, 2002Return to Accelerate Your Mac!

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News stories of July 2nd-3rd, 2002:

Audio Column Issue No.70 - The State Of MacOS X Audio Today
Adam Masri provided the 70th issue of our Mac Audio Column titled The State Of MacOS X Audio Today where he comments on spending a week with his sister who plays harp with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and wanted to produce her own music CDs and publish sheet music of her own arrangements. One of Adam's preface comments is

    "I keep seeing various press releases: "our software works with OS X," or, "our drivers have been rewritten to use Core Audio under OS X." "What I haven't seen is an article that says, "I stuck all this stuff together, and it actually worked." So, that's what I wanted to find out: What is the state of MacOS X audio? Does it work?
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OS X Jaguar Ahead of Schedule?
The next major revision to OS X may appear sooner than originally expected according to Cnet's Apple's Jaguar leaps ahead of schedule.
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Articles on OS X Security/Certification
There's an article at Cnet titled Apple aims to make friends with Uncle Sam that's subtitled "Looking to gain some business in the government market, Apple Computer has submitted its operating system for an independent security evaluation."
Another article related to OS X security and certification testing is at Zdnet - titled Apple: Taking OS X security seriously--finally. That story notes Apple has hired SAIC's Common Criteria Testing Lab to test OS X and OS X Server. The story talks about the recent OS X Apache and OpenSSH updates to address security holes, but also said there's a new vulnerability that's been discovered in mod_ssl that will require another update.
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Job Cuts at Apple Elk Grove, CA Plant, But Total Headcount Growing
News.com is reporting Apple has cut "less than 7%" of staff at a manufacturing facility at the Elk Grove, California plant. Despite small cuts like this, the article includes comments from the company saying that overall head count continues to grow, partly due to opening of Apple retail stores.
Considering Apple's market share and the state of most computer companies, I've been surprised they've not cut more jobs in the last year. (Many companies have had far larger numbers of job cuts during that period - thousands in many cases as noted in the news.com article.)
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Toast Titanium 5.1.4 Update adds 48x Recorder and Enhanced DVD+RW Support, More
(from Roxio's email on the update)

"Roxio has released the Toast 5.1.4 Titanium updater, which provides support for the Gracenote CDDB2 database, 48x recording, anti-aliased text rendering in certain interface areas, enhanced DVD+RW support and expanded "Optimize on the Fly" features. This free update for Toast 5 Titanium customers is available from Roxio.
Toast_514_Ti_Updater.hqx (direct download link)
Additionally, Roxio will be attending Macworld New York (booth #631) where they will be demonstrating and selling Toast Titanium and Toast with Jam. "
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Xserve Shipping, Benchmarks Show Good Value
Apple is now shipping the Xserve (common knowledge by now I'm sure). I posted a link to some Xserve benchmarks last Thursday showing it does well against more expensive servers from Dell.
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Opera and Macromedia Join Forces
Cnet has a news story titled Opera, Macromedia join on Mac efforts that says Opera will provide Macromedia with an embeddable browser for future versions of its Web development software packages.
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Quake 3 Guide for Net Connection Optimizing
Marco posted a link in the forums to a site with a Quake3 Connection Tweaks article that covers config file tweaking and includes explanations of variables and a table of suggested settings for various types of connections (LAN, ADSL/Cable/Wireless, ISDN, etc.) The guide also links to other pages on visual/FPS tweaks.
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Display Hinge Tip for PowerBook G3 (Pismo) Owners
Matthew Culmore called to note a tip for PowerBook G3 Pismo (2000/Firewire model) owners regarding the display hinge screws. He said after talking with a local Mac repair guy regarding display hinge/clutch problems (noted last year by several Wallstreet owners where the display would not stay upright anymore) he checked the 4 torx screws on the back panel of his pismo and found two were 1/2 to 1 turn loose. (Don't overtighten them.) Just a FYI that Pismo owners might want to check. (The FAQ's Powerbook section here has links to a reader articles on Wallstreet hinge/clutch repairs.)
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MacPlay to Bring Fallout 2 to the Mac - Limited Availability at MWNY
(from the email press release)
"MacPlay to Bring Fallout® 2 to the Macintosh -
Limited Quantities Available at Macworld New York.

MacPlay, a subsidiary of United Developers, announced today that it has added the highly popular hit title, Fallout® 2 to its 2002 line-up. Currently in final testing, Fallout 2 will make its worldwide debut in the MacPlay Booth at Macworld New York.

"We are very excited to bring Fallout 2 to the Mac platform" said Henry Price, Director of Sales and Marketing at MacPlay. "Our programmers and staff have worked extra hard to ensure that the product will be available in limited quantities at Macworld New York. I am amazed with the level of excitement surrounding the anticipated release of the product, but it just proves that Fallout 2 is a great classic game."

Fallout 2 is the sequel to the critically acclaimed RPG of the year Fallout®. Fallout took RPG'ing out of the dungeons and into a dynamic, apocalyptic retro-future. Fallout 2 is badder than ever with bigger, smarter and nastier enemies. With improved combat AI, you will have to learn to kill smarter, not harder.
Fallout 2 will have a retail price of $29.99 and will be available in limited quantities at Macworld Expo in New York, which runs July 17, 2002 through July 19, 2002. Be sure to stop by the MacPlay booth and check out all of the exciting things that MacPlay has going on. The official release date for Fallout 2 will be July 31, 2002."

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SMC 1211TX Network Card Drivers for OS X
(from a reader email)

"There are OSX drivers available for the SMC 1211TX NIC from the SMC Europe website. These appear to be more effective than the RealTek drivers mentioned elsewhere on the OSX PCI Network Card web page. [past article here-Mike] Using the RealTek drivers, my connection dropped out after a few seconds. Using the SMC drivers, I'm now running my G3-upgraded 7300 as a router under OSX :)
Here's the URL of the drivers:
www.smc-europe.com/english/support/driver_manual/adapter/1211.html
Regards,
John Cunningham "
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Disturbing MS Security Patch EULA Comments
(from a reader's email)

"I'm sorry if I didn't notice where you've already mentioned this item or if it's a duplicate of other sources. It's from the Register--USA and is titled:

MS security patch EULA gives Billg admin privileges on your box
http://www.theregus.com/content/4/25435.html
(clip from MS follows)

    "You agree that in order to protect the integrity of content and software protected by digital rights management ('Secure Content'), Microsoft may provide security related updates to the OS Components that will be automatically downloaded onto your computer. These security related updates may disable your ability to copy and/or play Secure Content and use other software on your computer. If we provide such a security update, we will use reasonable efforts to post notices on a web site explaining the update."

Scary but not exactly a surprise (and makes one feel even more grateful to be a Mac user).
Thanks as always for the usual great web site,
Mike Eusey"

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Source for iMac Game Wizard Voodoo2 Cards?
In the last week or so I've had several mails asking if there are any sources for the 3dfx Voodoo2 based iMac Game Wizard card. (Requires an iMac w/mezzanine slot like the rev A G3/233 models - later iMacs did not have the connector.) One reader just wrote he found some at ebay. (I don't know anything about the seller; just posting this as a FYI. The linked page is from a closed auction and didn't state that the card was for the iMac - the standard PCI Voodoo2 model won't fit.)

"Hey Mike,
The coolest thing, after I got your email, I went back to ebay to give it one more shot! I found one brand new :)! I just won the auction. The guy told me he has 50 more!
http://cgi.ebay.com/aw-cgi/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=2035436267
Kind Regards,
Chris G"

I wrote Chris to ask if he was sure that the card he bought was the mezzanine slot iMac version. I didn't see anything under the 'seller's other auctions' link so if you're interested, write the seller about the other cards mentioned by Chris and to verify these are really iMac versions (and not just the standard PCI slot Voodoo2 card model). If anyone knows of any sources for the iMac game wizard Voodoo2 card, let me know and I'll pass it on.
(Note there are no OS X drivers for the card, and the latest OS 9.2.x OpenGL extension is reportedly not compatible with 3dfx cards.)

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Posting on Problems with SETI Unit Mgr 3.32 and OS 9.x Applescript 1.8.3 Update
I don't run SETI, but for those that do a reader sent a link to a forum thread on problems seen in OS 9.x with SUM (Seti Unit Manager) 3.32 after installing the recent AppleScript 1.8.3 update.
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CDRW/CD/DVD/Hard Drive/Cardreader Compatibility Database Updates
The Drive Compatibility searchable database had 10 new reports over the weekend. The database includes reports on Combo DVD-CDRW, CDROMs, DVD-ROM, DVD-RAM, DVD-R, CDRW, Hard Drives and Removables (tape drive, ORB, ZIP, MO drives, CF/Smartmedia readers, etc.) in all interface types (IDE, IDE RAID cards, Firewire, SCSI, adapters). Current total 7,793 reports. Here's a summary listing of today's new reports. (Does not include updates to previous entries)

    CompactFlash Card Reader Reports:
  • Mr Flash USB Compact Flash reader used w/7600 (OS 8.6)

    IDE CDRW Drive Reports:
  • Teac CD-W524E (24x10x40x) in B&W G3 (OS X)
    (FYI illustrated CD drive install guide here covers 8600/9600/Beige G3 MT/B&W G3/G4s thru Digital audio)

    Firewire CDRW Drive Reports:
  • LG GCE-8400B 40X12X40x (in FW Case) used w/Dual G4 (OS X)
    (noted Retrospect support, disburner support but needed plugin mod for iTunes)

    IDE Hard Drive Reports:
  • Hitachi DK23DA-20F 20GB in PowerBook G3 lombard (OS 9.1)
  • IBM Travelstar 40 GNX 40GB in PowerBook G4 (OS X) (illustrated HD install guide here)
  • Maxtor D740X 40GB in iMac (OS 8.6)
  • Quantum Fireball Plus AS 60GB in Beige G3 (OS 9.1)
    (Beige G3 MT illustrated HD upgrade guide here)
  • Western Digital WD800BB 80GB in 7500 using IDE PCI Card (OS 9.1)

    Firewire Hard Drive Reports:
  • EZQuest Cobra 80GB used w/B&W G3 (OS 9.2)
  • Quantum 6GB (OEM iMac drive) in FW case used w/Powerbook G3 Lombard (OS X)

You can find full owner reports (latest shown first) by searching the database by drive/brand/interface/mac models (the latest reports are shown first in searches).
For guides to installing CD/CDRW/DVD drives or Hard drives in many mac models, see the IDE Articles page. The Firewire articles page also has guides on case kits, installing drives, etc.
If you've added a IDE, SCSI, Firewire or USB hard drive, CDRW, tape drive, etc. make sure you add a report to the database. [If you post an updated entry - make sure you use the same name, etc. as you did before so I can find your past entry. Thanks.]

(Entries today will be added the following newsday. Incomplete entries are deleted. Do not post questions in the database, it's for drive reports not questions on what drive to buy - for that try searching the database for reports from owners of your mac model on the drive type/brand/interface, etc. you're interested in.)

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CPU Upgrades Owner Reports Database Updated:
The Rate Your CPU Upgrade database has been updated with 1 new report. (Total to date: 7,210). [Entries made today are posted the next newsday morning. Incomplete entries, those with no comments, missing info, etc. are deleted]
Here's a summary of the update (does not include update/added comments to previous reports):

  • Sonnet G3/500 in 9600/233 (rated 9)

(Warning - Overclocking may not be reliable and could lead to hardware failure or corrupted data.) You can find the full reports by searching the database selecting the indicated Mac model and upgrade card brand/type. If you've upgraded the CPU on your Mac, please post an entry in the database. Search the database for entries from most every upgradable Mac model *before* you buy. (Searchable by mac model/upgrade brand). For detailed reviews with performance tests and install tips, see the CPU Upgrades page.)

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Reader Game Reviews Database Updated:
The Rate Your Mac Games database updates today included another review of Red Faction. Total Reviews (all titles): 884. To read game reviews use the search page.
If you've not already done so - Enter a Game review. (If your game title is not in the long listing, select "other game" and note the title in the comments)
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News pages from 1, 2 and 3 years ago:
(Sometimes these old pages are a bit embarrassing - and in many cases the offsite links may not work and comments there were accurate only on the date posted regarding upgrade availability, etc.)

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