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Tuesday, April 07, 2009, 09:00 am PT (12:00 pm ET)

Over 100 fixes in 10.5.7; Security Update 2009-002 in testing

Another week has passed and another beta of Mac OS X 10.5.7 has fallen into the hands of Apple developers. Separately, Apple is also beta testing its second security update of the year for certain Mac OS X distributions.

Mac OS X 10.5.7 Juno

Monday evening saw the release of Mac OS X 10.5.7 build 9J44 to developers, according to people familiar with the matter. The new beta arrives a little more than a week after the company issued build 9J39.

Those people with access to the software say the most significant change appears to be the addition of a fix for PDF font render, which along with four other new fixes brings the total number documented code corrections in Mac OS X 10.5.7 to 104.

Similarly, the lone issue affecting the last several builds has been the inability to install Apple's Safari 4 beta, which hasn't been tweaked to run on the new system update.

Mac OS X 10.5.7, code-named Juno, is expected for a release sometime this month. In basic form, it reportedly weighs in at approximately 442MB. A combo updater capable of updating versions of Leopard prior to 10.5.6 and bundling earlier security improvements is currently about 730MB.

Security Update 2009-002

Meanwhile, AppleInsider has also learned that Apple has recently tasked security experts with evaluating its second security update to Mac OS X of the 2009 calendar year.

Appropriately labeled Security Update 2009-002, the release is known to be in testing for versions of the Mac maker's Mac OS X 10.4 "Tiger" operating system. A version for Leopard hasn't been reported.

People familiar with the situation say Apple doesn't brief its security testers on the improvements it bundles into beta security updates and instead asks them probe for holes blindly. As such, it's not entirely clear what components of Tiger it targets, though the rumor is that it addresses a networking vulnerability.

Apple is expected to recommend the update "for all users" saying it "improves the security of Mac OS X." Four different distributions are currently being evaluated: Tiger client (PPC), Tiger server (PPC), Tiger client (Intel), and Tiger server (Intel).

The latest known builds are reportedly 8S410 (PPC) and 8S2410 (Intel).