News Archive for: 9/8/2004 Wednesday's News
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The Root cause for 10.3.5/Safari Rendering Problem with some websites
(Update: On 9/13/2004 Apple released 'version 1.1' of the 2004-09-07 security update that seems to fix this problem even for websites like bestbuy that had not updated their software to fix the root cause of the problem.)
A reader sent a note about the root cause of the Safari rendering problem with some websites in 10.3.5 after the security update:

" I've solved where the problem is coming from that affects Safari users after the latest security update, and it's not Apple's fault. See http://osx.hyperjeff.net/ for more details. The short of it is that the company's widely used menu-scripting product, QuickMenu Pro, has a bug in it that affects Safari because of its version number, not because of any problems with Safari or the Security update.
-Jeff"

I asked if it was a browser version check issue, why the fedex Canada site renders fine but not the USA site:

"The Canadian website doesn't use QuickMenu Pro.
I got an email back from OpenCube, and they acknowledged the bug and now have a patch available on their updates page:
http://www.opencube.com/updates.html
Any site that patches their QuickMenu Pro will then work fine.
-Jeff "
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Secure FTP still working in 10.3.5 after Security Update
(Update: On 9/13/2004 Apple released 'version 1.1' of the 2004-09-07 security update that fixes the FTP problem seen with 'version 1.0' if the update. However using secure ftp is still a better method in general.)
In reply to an earlier news item on FTP problems in 10.3.5 after the recent security update:

" Mike, Although standard ftp is disabled by the 9-07 Security Update, sftp (secure ftp) remains functional. An excellent freeware (and GPL licensed) sftp client called CyberDuck is my GUI sftp application of choice.. it can be found at:
http://icu.unizh.ch/~dkocher/cyberduck/

I used it to connect to my Mac which did have the Security Patch installed; it refused connecting under ftp but was fine when I selected sftp in CyberDuck.
Peter C.
Computing Services Specialist "

Another reader that reported on broken (std) FTP earlier today (after the security update w/10.3.5) verified secure FTP still worked.

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Comments on HP Photosmart Printer Software Update (w/Image Edit, Image Share)
(I've not tried this software personally - no HP printers used here anymore)

" Mike, Yesterday I received an email from HP about a version 2.5.5 software update for their PhotoSmart printers in OS X. I downloaded it (62.6 MB) and installed it. The only problem I've seen is there were probably hundreds of files that required permissions repair afterward. (I've seen the same thing with epson and canon installs - although not a functional problem.) However, I want to point out that this is an impressive package from HP.

Several applications are installed for managing photos. When the Mac is started, an HP PhotoSmart Menu application is automatically launched. This menu gives quick access to HP Image Edit, HP Image Print and HP Image Share applications along with a few others. I've checked out each of these and at first glance I tend to like some of them better than the image editing, printing and uploading features in iPhoto 4.

One clever part of HP Image Share is its email photos feature actually uploads the images to a free server and emails the recipient the links. What I like about this is the email recipient can choose to view the photo in a larger size than when I send photos as a small attachment. The recipient can download and print the photos if they like. HP also offers free space for storing online photo albums, although I use my .mac account for this.

This is a worthy effort by HP and I recommend PhotoSmart printer owners download the update. Here is the download link

Anyone who doesn't want the Photosmart Menu application to automatically open can disable it in System Preferences>Accounts>Startup Items.
Thomas Santee "

I welcome other reader comments on this software.
BTW - someone from HP support (UK) wrote in reply to the above:

"I work for HP Macintosh support UK, and I can categorically state that while the software is useable ... I highly recommend that everyone (especially OS 10.3 owners), throw away the supplied CD and use the latest drivers available from the HP site instead.
This is not only for improved performance, bug fixes but also to hopefully cut down any more calls I might receive about drivers not working on OS 10.3! (the one's on the CD are for 10.2 down and don't work with 10.3)
Richard P."

Of course the reader post above is talking about the update at HP's site - dated 9/1/2004. (Not software from a CD.)

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Reader reports on FTP problems after OS X Security Update
(Update: On 9/13/2004 Apple released 'version 1.1' of the 2004-09-07 security update that fixes the FTP problem seen with 'version 1.0' if the update. However using secure ftp is still a better method in general.)

Also see the later news item on using secure FTP

" Hi All. Bit of info if you've not seen it already.
FTP server in Mac os 10.3.5 is broken since the latest security update (today). They have changed from lukemftpd to tnftpd (a reader noted tnftpd was formerly lukemftpd per this page-Mike), but it doesn't allow people to login.
Three people who have applied the update have reported this issue here.
andy "


" Hi Mike,
Not sure if anybody else has noticed this yet, but on two machines here at our office that have had the OS X Security Update 2004-09-07 applied, none are now allowing FTP access to them. All machines in question are running 10.3.5, software firewall disabled and FTP access enabled in the sharing control panel. When attempting to log in via FTP with a correct user/pass the machines reject the attempt.
I'd recommend not installing this update on any OS X machine where FTP access is important.
- Fourth Horseman - "


" Mike, I can confirm the reports of other users here on broken FTP logins. Command line reports error "530 Login incorrect. ftp: Login failed." when password is entered. Problem occurs from both Mac OS X and Windows clients. Using Mac OS X 10.3.5 here. Arggh - not the first time this year Apple has broken FTP services. Any workarounds or solutions would be appreciated.
Rick "

Rick later said he tried the revert tip below but still has the same error.


" Hi Mike, You can fix it with the ftpd from an unpatched system.

1. Disable FTP Access from sharing
2. as root (sudo -s) rename /usr/libexec/ftpd to /usr/libexec/broken.ftpd
3. Copy ftpd from another system (unpatched) from /usr/libexec to /usr/libexec/ftpd
4. chmod ogu+x /usr/libexec/ftpd
5. Start FTP access

This puts the old ftpd back which can lower the security of the system, assuming apple upgraded it due to a known buffer overflow.

I'll need to ktrace ftpd to find out why it can't authenticate, but something is definately broken here.
thanks, Andy
(Andy later replied with more info/notes for Rick on why his revert attempt may have failed-Mike)
Did he stop and restart FTP access? If you just replace ftpd, it won't be re run until the service is stopped and restarted...

If he runs otool -L /usr/libexec/ftpd and it DOESN't report libpam, then he/she is still using the new one. Someone else on the forums discovered that new ftpd doesn't link to libpam... a way of telling the two apart.
andy "

See the later news item on a better alternative (secure FTP), that reportedly is still working in 10.3.5 after the update.
This reader sent what he thought was a fix - but later wrote it didn't help.

" One just needs to add the FTP accessible user names to /etc/ftpusers to enable FTP access. It would be nice though if Apple just added a tick box to the user management for FTP access..
Best regards, Petri O.
Helsinki, Finland
(he later wrote)
Forget this one, doesn't seem to fix it.. I was ftp'ing to wrong machine ;-("

A better solution for now is using Secure FTP (which is preferable anyway.)

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Tip for Safari/10.3.5 rendering problems after Security Update
(Update: On 9/13/2004 Apple released 'version 1.1' of the 2004-09-07 security update that fixes the problem with some websites like bestbuy, even though they had not updated their server side software (like fedex.com/USA did) that was the root cause.)

A reader sent a tip for the 10.3.5/Safari problem mentioned earlier today:

" I see the same problems, too. The workaround is to get Safari to display the debug menu (with Safari Enhancer or with a terminal command) and choose a User Agent like Netscape 7 instead of the default "Automatically Chosen".
Cheers, Joseph "

Hopefully websites that use OpenCube's Quickmenu pro will update the software soon so that these workarounds are not needed anymore.

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Review of DEVONagent search assistant for OS X
Erik of IT-Enquirer wrote he's posted a review of DEVONagent search assistant for OS X. He also mentioned a follow-up report on the ATI Radeon 9800 Pro Spec. Ed. where he notes occasional display problems.
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Some websites not rendered properly in Safari/10.3.5 after OS X Security Update
(Update: On 9/13/2004 Apple released 'version 1.1' of the 2004-09-07 security update that fixes this problem even though the root cause was a 3rd party server side utility.)
(See the later news item above for the root cause of the problem, a 3rd party server side scripting software.)

" Hello Mike,
Better get the word out quick, websites like Fedex and DirectTV are not rendering at all with the new Security Update 2004-09-07.
See this Apple discussions forum thread.
Glenn "

Running 10.3.5/Safari (w/security update), after selecting the U.S.A. as the country at fedex.com, the page table structure is broken (long left-side column of text, scrolling way down shows what normally is the top of their page design - if you selected Canada the page is ok.) FireFox still seems OK and 10.2.8/Safari w/security update is not affected. I'm not sure how many other sites are use the QuickMenu Pro server software - but OpenCube has now released an update to fix that. One of the later posts in the apple forum thread said changing a user agent setting allowed bestbuy.com to render properly (see the later news item above for a reader tip for Safari on changing the user-agent setting) but hopefully sites that use Quickmenu Pro will update their software soon to fix this problem at the server side.
I welcome other reader feedback on the Security Update. (Please include your OS version and browser used. Thanks.)

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Reader Report on using EyeHome with a PC
From a reader mail yesterday

" Just a quick heads up to let you know that the Elgato Eyehome will work with content kept on PCs.

I'm currently mac-less so needed a temporary solution to access my movies/music till the new iMac G5 arrives so I did a bit of digging and found out that the eyehome is based on a product from Syabas (iBox). In addition a number of other companies also use it at as basis to their products including Neuston (www.neuston.com). (The August 16th news page had a Reader report on Neuston MC-500 (alternative to EyeHome)-Mike) So I downloaded the Neuston software for PC (they also do a mac version), installed and it worked perfectly! The Eyehome saw the pc and worked fine with the software giving me the same functions as with the standard elgato software on my mac!

Here is the important bit - you need to download version 2 of the Neuston software for PC and not version 2.4 (latest) as only version 2 works perfectly with Eyehome. (Well, 2.4 didn't work for me....)

Before my mac was sold I tried the mac version and found it to be functionally better than the elgato software, especially in terms of music in that it lets you search by song/artist/keyword e.t.c - but it does not look for eyetv folders.
Thought your Eyehome using readers might find this interesting.
Darren E. "

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ATIcellerator Overclocking Reports page updated
I've updated the page of ATIccelerator II feedback/reader reports with the latest reader mails on using the overclocking utility. (Reports added from an iBook G3/800 owner noting no performance gain and a PB G4/9600 Mobility owner that saw the console error some others mentioned which indicates settings changes were not applied.)
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VirtualPC/Windows XP Service Pack2 Reports Updated
I've updated the page of VirtualPC/Win XP user feedback on Service Pack 2 to include another reader report (noting improved performance, despite the fact MS said virtual machine performance is lower with SP2 than SP1).
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CDRW/CD/DVD/Hard Drive/Cardreader Compatibility Database Update Listing
The Drive Compatibility Database had 3 new reports added this morning. (Entries from Tuesday, entries today are added the next newsday morning.) The database includes reports on Combo DVD-CDRW, CDROMs, DVD-ROM, DVD-RAM, DVD-R, 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, USB, adapters). Current total 13,563 reports. (searching by drive type/brand, mac model etc. listed below will show the full reports, most recent first - does not include updates to previous reports)

    CDRW Drives:
  • USB Norcent EW520 (52x24x52x) used w/G5 Tower (OS X 10.3)
    (listed under "other" brands, no native iApps burn support so using Patchburn II for Panther.)

    DVD+R/RW + DVD-R/RW Drives:
  • IDE Liteon SOHW-1213S in G4/AGP (OS X 10.3)
    (no native iApps burn support so using Patchburn II for Panther.
    Illustrated CD drive install guide here covers G4 towers up to the Digital Audio model, plus Beige G3/MT and B&W G3)

    Hard Drives:
  • IDE Hitachi Travelstar 5K80 40GB in (pismo) Powerbook G3 2000 (OS 9.2)
    (PB G3 Pismo illustrated HD install guide here. Wallstreet and PB G4 guides linked on the IDE and Systems topics pages.)

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.)
(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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Rate Your CPU Upgrade Reports Database Updated
The Rate Your CPU Upgrade database has been updated with 1 new report this morning (entries from Tuesday, entries later today are added the next newsday morning). Total to date: 9,539. Here's a summary of the report added today (search by brand/mac model for full reports - latest reports always shown first):

  • XLR8 G4/450 in 7600/132 (rated 9)

    (For full reviews of G4 and G3 upgrades compared to stock CPUs, including real world apps/game tests, install info, etc. - see the CPU upgrades page. OC/CPU module articles are on the Systems page.)

(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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Recent Reviews and Articles:
Listing/links to recent articles and reviews you may have missed.
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