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Tuesday, June 03, 2008, 01:00 pm PT (04:00 pm ET)

Apple set to serve up first builds of Mac OS X 10.5.4

Apple, less than a week away from its annual developers conference, is preparing to begin widespread testing of Mac OS X 10.5.4, its fourth maintenance and security update to the Leopard operating system, AppleInsider has learned.

People familiar with the matter say developers could have the first pre-release copies of the update in their hands by week's end. It's almost a certainty that the beta software will surface by the company's developer's conference next week, they add.

While it's unclear exactly what enhancements Apple has planned for Mac OS X 10.5.4, it's possible the release could include tie-ins specific to the upcoming 3G iPhone and iPhone Software v2.0, or the much rumored rebranding of the company's .Mac internet services. Embedded support for the impending launch of Penryn-based Mac mini's is also likely.

Apple just recently released Mac OS X 10.5.3 following more than two months of internal development. The mammoth update weighed in at over 420 megabytes and packed well over 200 bug fixes. However, it left much to be desired for users experiencing graphics glitches on their Mac notebooks and professionals who rely on Adobe's Creative Suite 3.0.

Specifically, users of MacBooks and MacBook Pros report that redraw issues persist in key programs even after the 10.5.3 update, particularly in movie players or Apple's own iTunes app. The bugs often distort or block out entire window views as well as cause momentary blackouts in videos, all of which can be seen in this video.

Many of the affected users say the glitches first appeared after installing the "Leopard Graphics Update" that Apple released alongside Mac OS X 10.5.2 in February.

Meanwhile, visitors to support forums for both Adobe and Apple report that after upgrading to Mac OS X 10.5.3 they are inable to properly save files from InDesign, Photoshop, and other CS3 programs to a location on a remote server.

The CS3 files reportedly become corrupt, which prevents them from being recognized properly. Some users have report success in temporarily defaulting to "Save As" to register their changes rather than using the standard "Save" command.