Mac OS X v10.4.8 improves networking, Finder

Apple on Friday released Mac OS X v10.4.8 and Mac OS X Server v10.4.8. Both updates are available for download in various forms both from the Software Update control panel and from Apple's Web site.

Mac OS X v10.4.8 contains myriad improvements and fixes for both PowerPC and Intel-based Macs, according to Apple. Here's a rundown of things that have changed:

  • connecting to wireless networks using the EAP-FAST protocol
  • Apple USB modem reliability
  • using OpenType fonts in Microsoft Word
  • compatibility with 3rd party USB hubs
  • scanner performance
  • RAW camera support
  • printing documents with Asian language names
  • performance of the Translation widget
  • broadband network performance
  • security updates
  • In detailed information about what's changed in this update, Apple reveals that Mac OS X v10.4.8 sports a fix for performance issues that could occur for Macs connecting to cable service provider Comcast's broadband network. It also improves reliability for connections established using the Apple USB Modem, improves ExpressCard support for MacBook Pro systems, improves Apple File Sharing client performance, and more.

    It also adds RAW image decoding support for various Digital Single Lens Reflex (DSLR) cameras including models from Sony, Nikon, Fuji and Konica Minolta. Rosetta, the emulation technology used to enable Intel-based Macs to run code optimized specifically only for PowerPC hardware, has also gotten some improvements, with better numerics and improved ColorSync matching.

    Finder problems associated with Finder alert messages after mounting a partitioned FireWire drive have been corrected, along with a bug fix for Preview and reliability improvements for iTunes iPod syncing.

    Mac OS X Server has also been updated. Changes in that release include the following:

  • avoiding AFP server deadlocks and thread starvation
  • membership and permissions issues when Windows users are in more than 16 groups
  • synchronizing Open Directory password information between Master and Replicas
  • changing and saving Open Directory password policy security settings
  • directory service usage affecting Mail server performance
  • streaming movies to localized versions of the QuickTime Player
  • handling TCP Selective Acknowledgments in congested networks
  • compatibility with third party applications and devices
  • previous standalone security updates
  • More specific details are available from Apple's Web site.

    Finally, a Security Update has been posted for Mac OS X v10.3.9 and Mac OS X Server v10.3.9. The update improves the security of the following components:

  • CFNetwork
  • Cyrus SASL
  • Flash Player Plug-in
  • QuickDraw
  • WebKit
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