10.3.3 Brings Satisfying Permissions Compromise

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{"Faithful readers know that a few months ago I went on at length about a potentially dangerous issue that occurred when you first booted into Mac OS X 10.3 -- specifically that for the first five minutes you were logged in, you could toss out any file on your Mac (even those your Mac needed in order to function) without the OS raising a single objection.

Schoun Regan, of ",", who originally alerted me to this issue, reports that the latest update to Mac OS X (10.3.3) not only fixes the problem, but improves upon the way earlier versions of the Mac OS handle similar situations.

Under Jaguar and earlier, if you, in the guise of an Administrator user, attempted to toss or move a file you didn't have permissions for, you were flatly denied, forcing you to jump to the Terminal to do the deed via the command line. When you attempt the same thing under Mac OS X 10.3.3, you are asked for your username and password before you're allowed to perform such an operation.

Granted, this may not be the kind of fireworks and signal flares the most determinedly unwary users need to keep them from tossing out files they shouldn't, but the prompt should be enough of a clue for the vast majority of Mac users.

I think this is the perfect compromise -- enough of a warning for the unwashed and the power for those who know what they're doing to manage their files without being forced into the Terminal.


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