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Wednesday, February 28, 2007, 06:35 am PT (09:35 am ET)

Mac OS X 10.4.9 to boost image import speeds

Apple this week dropped yet another pair of pre-release Mac OS X 10.4.9 builds on its developer crowd, inching the software closer to a public release.

The diligence with which the Cupertino-based company has been refining the software may signal that Mac OS X 10.4.9 will be the final maintenance update to Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger before attention is drawn solely to Leopard.

As was the case with prior seeds, developer notes accompanying the latest builds — 8P2132 (Intel) and 8P132 (PowerPC) — are said to reflect no known issues with the software.

People familiar with the latest pre-release say Apple notes just one significant change since builds 8P2130 and 8P130 were issued last week, specifically a bug fix to ImageIO that was affecting image import speeds.

Combo updates of Mac OS X 10.4.9, meaning those that can be applied to any Mac OS X 10.4.x installation, currently weigh in at 163.47 MB for PowerPC-based Macs and 315.45 for Intel-based Macs.

Come its release, Mac OS X 10.4.9 will represent the first update to Apple's Mac OS X operating system in nearly half a year. The last time the company offered a public update to its system software was in late September, with the release of Mac OS X 10.4.8.