Mac OS 10.5.6 problems? Apple suggests shampoo
Advice a bit frothy
Apple has finally responded to numerous reports from disgruntled Mac users about their inability to upgrade Mac OS 10.5, Leopard, from version 10.5.5 to 10.5.6. Their advice: Try again.
Essentially, Apple's six-step advice can be boiled down into two steps:
- 1. Navigate to /Library/Updates and trash everything in that folder.
- 2. Download the update again and cross you fingers.
Or, as it says on a bottle of Head & Shoulders, "lather, rinse, and repeat."
The long and the short of it is that the 190MB "delta" update (some delta updates appear to be bigger, at the 360MB or so mark) does not download correctly, stopping at around the 45MB mark. However, Software Update thinks that it has completed the download, and tries to proceed accordingly!
So, what's happening is that a partially complete file is being treated as a fully complete one. What's more, it's somehow getting past the checksum stage, which implies that the checksum is correct... for the 45MB partial file! This is a pretty major foul up.
It should also be mentioned that Apple's "advice" doesn't address any of the other problems experienced by 10.5.6 updaters, such as dropped network connections, audio "pops" upon restart, Mail.app refusing to quit or failing to connect, problems with Apache and Contribute, and iSights going blind. (Oh, and if this last one has happened to you, make sure to reset both the SMU and the SMC.)
It appears that Apple's engineers are all preoccupied with preparing for their final Macworld Expo.
"It is getting to the point where the fix for Vista is OS X and the fix for OS X is... Linux!? That will certainly be true for those with the old PPC machines when Apple finally cuts that limb off the tree."
They've ALREADY cut off below 866mhz G4s, and you're guess at the outcome of this is spot on.
Where I work we mainly sell used Dells, but also Macintoshes.. with Ubuntu 8.04 installed on all of them. After seeing some models for sale here with Ubuntu Linux, a surprising number of Mac fans have been asking me about it (the Mac fans have far more interest than the people buying Dells, although some of them have asked about it too). Ubuntu 8.04 or 8.10 for PowerPC are "unsupported", but work fine once the .iso is tracked down.. the isos are pretty hidden from ubuntu.com, but a direct URL is
They typically do run 10.5 on their boxes that are new enough, but 10.5 has already dropped support for <866mhz G4. (And, apparently if you coax 10.5 to install on a <866, it works but is too slow...) So, on the G4-400s or whatever they have, 10.2/3/4 is losing it's charm, and it's harder to find new software written for 10.2 or whatever, so they decide to try something different.
Experienced the upgrade problem and assumed it was a virus and simply installed a new system and transferred all my doc's and it worked perfectly. After upgrading I dumped the old system. In any case, getting rid of the old system is a good idea as a catch all.
As a happy user of Apple Laptops for quite some time I can only conclude that nobody bothered to test the "delta update" but rather relied on it being equivalent to the full update. Very sloppy. Apple should be critiqued heavily for this. Perhaps it will improve the next update. Responses from support stating that it was alright for the permissions database not to have been updated and causing confusing messages when the disk utility was run were pretty lame as well.
updates should work the first time, Apple needs to release update again...
Hi, everyone knows that the 'lather, rinse and repeat was a marketing plot to sell twice as much shampoo, it worked for awhile and probably still does... Apple fix your update, should work on any computer first time.
What's the real percentage of affected users?
Although there are some obvious problems, I don't see this affected that many people. No one I know, none of the Macs at work, nor mine at home are having any issues. This is a case of the tail wagging the dog. Certainly this would be nice if it didn't happen, but the problems are definitely not as widespread as the article leads you to believe.
Having seen their anti-Apple bias I simply apply this formula to most Apple stories the Reg decides to run:
RegAppleArticle * -1 = TRUTH
or in programming . . .