News Archive for Thursday, November 10th, 2011:

Macs | CPU Upgrades | Video | Storage | Audio | Apps/OS/Network | Search
Miss a Day?
See the Archives.
= Recent Articles and Reviews =

2006 Mac Pro 8-Core CPU Upgrade report (Dual X5355 2.66GHz Quad-Cores)
(another reader mail on upgrading 1st model Mac Pros to quad-core CPUs)

"2006 Mac Pro (1,1) with two 2.66 Dual core CPUs, upgraded with two Xeon 5355 2.66GHz Quad Core CPUs. (Ref: Intel X5355 CPU info.)
Following a bunch of people's example, I swapped out my original Dual cores to a pair of Quad cores I purchased off of Ebay for $350. A couple of well documented YouTube videos were invaluable, as was some assitance from my kids and my wife. (She's a Neurosugical Physician's Assistant, doesn't hurt!)
(Links to videos and how-to articles on this upgrade linked in several reports in the past, including this one from July 2009)

I ran Geek Bench before and after, the score went from 5563 to 9397 on the first try, haven't had much time to do further testing. I use my Mac Pro mostly for Pro Tools audio work and this fall is crazy busy for some reason, but having 7 cores for plugins as opposed to 3 (we always leave one for the system to use) has made a huge difference and was WELL worth the $350. It's not an easy install, though, watch all the videos and take notes before you start.

This wasn't run multiple times and the memory could possibly be moved around to increase performance (and there's some run/run variation) but I gotta get back to work! Thanks for a great site and resource!
Best, Eli J."

Thank you

(Late 2011) MacBook Pro SMC Firmware Update 1.5:
(As of post time Thursday night, the doc doesn't list the affected MBP series/year (nor the SMC version after the update), but I'm assuming it's for the current 2011 models.)

"About MacBook Pro SMC Firmware Update 1.5
This update resolves an issue where a MacBook Pro being used with a power adapter may unexpectedly shut down under heavy workload if the battery charge level is near empty.

Your computer's power cord must be connected and plugged into a working power source, or your battery must be at least 25% charged.

When your computer restarts a gray screen will appear with a status bar to indicate the progress of the update.

Your computer's fans will run at full speed during the update but will return to normal speed once the update completes.

Do not disturb or shut off the power on your computer during this update.

System Requirements:
Mac OS X 10.6.8, OS X 10.7.2"

As of post time tonight (Thursday), this update wasn't added yet to the doc listing all the EFI and SMC firmware updates for Intel-based Macs (by model/series/year) but should be added soon. (FYI: That article was revised Friday to add this SMC 1.5 update to the Late 2011 MBP series. According to that page, the SMC version after the update is 1.68f98 for 13in model, 1.69f3 for 15in and 1.70f5 for 17in model.)

Time Capsule/AirPort 802.11n Base Firmware 7.6 (w/security fix):
Saw the apple doc on security fixes in this update and ran Airport Utility which showed it available. (I'm running a 3rd gen AE 802.11N base that had 7.5.2 firmware previously.) Here's a clip from the docs on changes/security fixes in 7.6 firmware:

"Time Capsule and AirPort Base Station (802.11n) Firmware 7.6
This update for all 802.11n AirPort Express, 802.11n AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule models provides fixes for the following:
  • An issue with performance on overlapping wireless networks
  • An issue with AirPlay audio streaming
  • An issue with configuring multiple entries for DNS servers

For detailed information on Firmware Updates 7.6, including how to install the update, please visit: All about Time Capsule, AirPort Extreme, and AirPort Express base station firmware updates.

(Here's info on security fix in v7.6)

  • Impact: An attacker in a privileged network position may be able to cause arbitrary command execution via malicious DHCP responses

    Description: dhclient allowed remote attackers to execute arbitrary commands via shell metacharacters in a hostname obtained from a DHCP message. This issue is addressed by stripping shell meta-characters in dhclient-script.

Installation note for Firmware version 7.6
Firmware version 7.6 is installed into Time Capsule or AirPort Base Station with 802.11n via AirPort Utility, provided with the device. It is recommended that AirPort Utility 5.5.3 or later be installed before upgrading to Firmware version 7.6."

I updated to 7.6 tonight and so far no ill effects seen here. (All settings retained.) As always YMMV. If anyone sees any other pros/cons from this update, let me know. Thanks.


Message from Valve about Steam Forum and Database Compromise:
(from email today, also posted at the Steam Forums)

"IM from Gabe (Valve)
Dear Steam Users and Steam Forum Users,
Our Steam forums were defaced on the evening of Sunday, November 6. We began investigating and found that the intrusion goes beyond the Steam forums.
We learned that intruders obtained access to a Steam database in addition to the forums. This database contained information including user names, hashed and salted passwords, game purchases, email addresses, billing addresses and encrypted credit card information. We do not have evidence that encrypted credit card numbers or personally identifying information were taken by the intruders, or that the protection on credit card numbers or passwords was cracked. We are still investigating.

We don't have evidence of credit card misuse at this time. Nonetheless you should watch your credit card activity and statements closely.

While we only know of a few forum accounts that have been compromised, all forum users will be required to change their passwords the next time they login. If you have used your Steam forum password on other accounts you should change those passwords as well.

We do not know of any compromised Steam accounts, so we are not planning to force a change of Steam account passwords (which are separate from forum passwords). However, it wouldn't be a bad idea to change that as well, especially if it is the same as your Steam forum account password.

We will reopen the forums as soon as we can.
I am truly sorry this happened, and I apologize for the inconvenience.

Apple/Products Related News/Articles/Updates:

Updated Apple Support/How-To/Troubleshooting Docs:
(incl. many from Wed.)

Recent Articles/Tips/Tweaks/Reviews - Listing/links to articles, tips and reviews you may have missed.
Previous News Pages: For links to older news pages, see the Archives.

(Ad/Sale Items)

= UPGRADES by Model =
Upgrades for YOUR Mac!

= Refurb Mac Pros =
(Click for Current List)

= SSDs up to 4TB =
SSDs for Most Macs!

= ThunderBolt =
Drives, Docks & More

Up to 12 TB HDD
HGST, WD, Seagate, Toshiba

= 2.5" HDs & DIY Kits =
Notebook Hard Drives and DIY drive/case kit bundles

Lifetime warranty RAM Upgrades!

Internal and External Superdrives/Blu-Ray drives

Graphics cards, Displays, Adapters, Cables & more

Interfaces, Cables, Software, Speakers, Headphones & more

Apps, Utilities, OS, VM, Games and more

WiFi and Bluetooth Devices/Adapters/More

= Repair Service =
for iPhone, iPad, Macs

= iPad/iPhone/iPod =
Accessories, Cases, Docks & More

= back to =
Copyright 1997-2018. All Rights Reserved
All brand or product names mentioned here are properties of their respective companies.
Legal: Site Privacy and terms of use.