Fanbois howl as OS X update bricks PGPed Macs
Users of PGP's Whole Disk Encryption for Macs got a nasty surprise when they upgraded to the latest OS X update once they discovered their systems were no longer able to reboot.
It seems that Apple and the Symantec-owned PGP suffered a near-fatal failure to communicate that 10.6.5 ships with a new EFI booter that was incompatible with the encryption software's boot guard. As a result, the update rendered Macs using WDE as little more than expensive paperweights.
“PGP you DO HAVE A FREAKING DEVELOPERS LICENCE FOR APPLE RIGHT???” one outraged user vented here. “YOU CANNOT TEST SYSTEM RELEASES IN ADVANCE???”
Test versions of the update have been available to developers for a while now, but it's not clear if they included the new EFI booter. If not, the fault could lie with Apple. The world will probably never know.
Fortunately, a fix was provided Thursday morning that's relatively painless. It involves booting off the PGP recovery CD and then logging in to OS X. An automatic self-repair process that's part of the Mac bootup sequence will straighten out things from there. A variation on that theme is to put the bricked machine in target mode and boot from another Mac running PGP.
WDE users who have yet to install the update may safely do so by decrypting their systems before running the update, PGP said.
Yeah, preventing and fixing the goof may be a hassle, but at least there's a happy outcome. ®
Not a Surprise
Never buy Symantec malware.
WDE can bollox-up Windows Update, too
Ever since PGP Whole Disk Encryption was installed on this Dell laptop, I use at work, I have to handhold Windows Update through its monthly dose of Redmond Medicine. It invariably fails to start, consumes all my RAM trying to, or makes various extravagant claims, such as "Background Intelligent Transfer Service" isn't running (when it is). It then needs to be killed afterwards, by nuking the wauctl.exe from the Task manager before it consumes all of the RAM and disabling both services from the MMC for another month. BITS really should be renamed the "Stupid Overblown SCP Client That Cannot Run In The Background".
I've narrowed it down to a series of utterly incomprehensible Registry hacks containing commands whose names must have been dreamt up by one of those hopeless facerollers in COSD. I've put them all into a BAT file, on my desktop, and double click it before trying to start it up, each time. Even so, Windows 'Automatic' Update, now consumes at least half a morning, every month. I love Windows: it';s just like Linux used to be, in the Old Days.
One thing is true, however. PGP is supposed to protect the data on the laptop, should it get stolen. It certainly does this, because I struggle to use the machine, myself, now, and a thief would have no chance.
Small market share
Rather than being dicked around all the time by an OS with an almost monopoly!