back to article Apple's Leopard rejects latest version of Java

Apple faces yet more flack from the Mac faithful over the discovery that the operating system won't run the latest version of Java. It's one of several beefs relating to the OS X upgrade that is sparking vitriol among the normally docile crowd. Leopard may have 300 new features, but it is unable to run Java 1.6, even though …


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  1. Alan Donaly

    Not just a little problem

    I looked hard at macs before deciding they were a little too pricey for the muscle I needed basically to develop Java applications I didn't have any idea this was in the works once again my frugal nature saves my bacon.

  2. Richard Neill

    Since Leopard is Posix compliant

    Why can't people just install Java 1.6 as released for BSD, or Linux?

    Yes, it would need a recompile, but it ought to work. Isn't that the point of Posix?

  3. Peter Labrow

    No really news is it?

    While I generally respect The Register, this is hardly news: "new OS has some compatibility problems". It would be wonderful if a new OS from anyone was flawless but it's never the case and it always takes a short (or long in some cases) while for such issues to be sorted. You're making more out of this than it is - and so are the developers who are crying because just a couple of days out and this issue isn't fixed. Any IT pro or developer with any common sense does not leap to ANY new OS on day one.

  4. Anonymous Coward

    Yes it is

    I think that the main problem is that Apple are deleting posts off their own support forums, as if the issues surrounding java didn't even exist. That certainly is newsworthy. If they posted a quick reply saying that there was an issue and that they're looking into it, that'd probably be fine as a starter for ten. By sticking their heads in the sand and willing the problem to go away, they don't do themselves any favours.

    That said, any professional developer who upgrades to a brand new OS on the day of release on their production machine deserves to be beaten with a copy of his or her change control process.

  5. Bas Scheffers

    Still the best Java platform

    I write Java software for a living and I have to say, Mac OS X is still the best Java platform despite the missing Java 6. "It just works" is true here and very much so. In fact, unless you are doing an internal project, you would not be wise to use Java 6 anyway because even on Windows or Linux, the installed base would be quite low and you would simply annoy people with an enormous JRE download that doesn't actually give them any real benefits over 1.5. Using it for Applets, as the article suggests, would be downright retarded.

    To Richard Neil: No, it would not work. The Posix implementation of Java AWT/Swing is X11 based. The main reason for Apple doing their own JVM is that their AWT/Swing implantation uses Aqua directly.

    To Alan Donaly: For a java programmer, you seem to have profound difficulties finding the dot and comma keys on your keyboard! :P

    Oh, and like 99.999% (or more?) people out there, no BSOD to be seen on my Mac Pro or MacBook Pro upon upgrade to Leopard...

  6. Tony Carter-Inman

    re: No really news is it?

    I'm sure the problem seems bigger to these developers, as they will all presumably have had the beta versions to test & develop on, and maybe java worked fine on the alpha/beta pre-release versions. I didn't hear of any java incompatibility problems in the latter versions, so I'm assuming it's a problem with the release version only.

  7. Steven Raith

    Recompile fo sho, mofo

    Richard - I was under the impression that using Mac OS meant you shouldn't have to do recompiles, it should 'just work'....after all, aren't recompiles for beardy Linux users? He says, stroking whiskers...


    It's not like JDK is a small thing these days....

    Steven R

  8. Greg

    Mac - It just works!

    Unless it doesn't, in which case we'll delete your support forum threads to try and make it look better, whilst preventing other users with the same problem from being able to diagnose it as effectively.

    @Peter - Do I detect a streak of MacFan? Vista had flaws from day one and El Reg reported them in exactly the same way.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    lol Macs are crap!

    Why not just install Vista you could even use J# then

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    @Peter Labrow

    Yet another Apple fanboy who will quite happily excuse any cock-ups by Apple. This isn't a compatibility issue, this is a huge glaring in your face balls-up. BSOD with a common app installed and no Java, especially as Apple are the ones who want control of the Java machine on their OS. There is no way Apple should have released Leopard in this state. Obviously the testers can't be bothered doing a proper job.

  11. Damien Jorgensen
    Gates Halo

    re: Peter Labrow

    lol the way Mac users go on and on about how stable their OS is, how full of features and how it never crashes amazes me.

    Seems you like your mac fan boys dont like it when the shoe is on the other foot.

  12. MattW

    Re No really news is it?

    Ooh look, the fanboys have started.

    Get real - Apple have fscked up, just like every other OS developer does and it's this sort of apologist 'Apple can do no wrong' attitude that makes it news.

  13. Jess
    Paris Hilton

    Who in their right mind

    would install a new OS on their revenue producing system the week it comes out? (Even if it doesn't come from Microsoft.)

    If the situation hasn't changed in a couple of weeks, I'd be surprised. If not before the end of the year I'd be worried.

  14. Anonymous Coward

    @Peter Labrow

    Everyone jumped on Vista's back because of various reasons. Most of the gripes I've read about weren't it's fault* (such as application writers not following standards that MS have been warning/telling them to us and hardware manufacturers not providing drivers). It seems common place to have a cheap shot at OS's as they are released.

    You are spot on, all new OS's in the mainstream will have issues. That's life. As they get more popular the likelihood of complications increases (due to the increased amount of third party apps and hardware etc).

    I think people should wait to reserve judgement.

    * obviously some where.

  15. Darren Sandford

    Didn't take long for the Apple faithful to leap to the defense of the poor, vulnerable Jobs!

    See above.

  16. Simon

    Proceed with caution icon?

    As i'm sure most people will be saying here, never upgrade to the latest OS straight away, lets the niggles surface, then let the company fix 'em.

    I'm going to wait a while till I upgrade and will be keeping an eye on the forums.

    So yes, we need a new icon for this kind of news.

  17. Mark Rendle
    Gates Halo

    Ha ha ha

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    IT Angle

    Mountains, Molehills & Journalists

    "revolt", "yet more flack", "vitriol", "normally docile crowd"

    Errr yeah, whatever... finished with the hyperbole yet? Judging from the various Mac forums this weekend it looks like most of us managed the upgrade without any major issues. Try putting a bit of perspective on the situation and calm down, anyone would think you were one of those Apple Fanbois...

  19. Ben Gibson
    Thumb Down

    This really is news

    I think its far to make a short news article about an OS that wont work with what the Java devs are currently using, sure everyone knows problems follow an OS release but not to be told about something which a lot of people find very important is a surprise punch. Bad Apple.

  20. Rachel Greenham

    No, not news...

    the problem here seems to be the lack of communication from Apple about it. If they were to just say "yeah, we had a problem and couldn't go live with it, it'll be available in software update as soon as we fix it" that'll be fine.

    But they're not. And pulling forum threads is crappy.

    Luckily here we're still building to Java 5, so we're OK to go with the upgrade. :-D

  21. Scott Mckenzie


    Have to agree.... no developer worth his salt would install an OS on any machine on it's release date, you'd wait a few weeks at least (or few years in the case of Vista)

    The other issue with the BSOD highlights something else, people rant and rave about Apple liking to keep things 'in house' yet the programs causing issues are both 3rd party apps....

    I'm looking forward to putting Leopard on later :)

  22. This post has been deleted by its author

  23. Kenny Millar

    Dear Alan Doley

    Not to great at maths then?

    Compare a DELL Laptop with a SIMILAR spec apple laptop and I think you'll find Apple are very competitively priced.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    @Richard Neill

    Does the average Mac user even know what a compiler is?

  25. Brendon McLean

    Information vacuum

    There have been a veritable flurry of posts on the mailing list this weekend. A lot of this ended up being a rather fruitless discussion on whether Java 6 is actually useful, but it did seem that most developers agree that Apple's communication strategy makes no sense whatsoever and simply fuels feelings of neglect and disrespect. Apple could end this whole ordeal with a simple one-line statement.

    This article

    provides some hope in the form that this mess is likely to be best explained by corporate inefficiency rather than pig-headed arrogance.

    Here's to hoping.

  26. Giles Jones Gold badge

    Overblown nonsense

    Apple makes machines for home users primarily, they're also good for design and media. While some developers like these machines, to say they're unusable just because they don't have the latest Java is stupid.

    Anyone with half a brain who is doing commercial production work would do a test installation first anyway.

    Quality Java apps are few and far between, they run slow and can't take advantage of native features (typically). Java is used for stuff like Apache Tomcat, but even then you're unlikely to use the latest greatest version of Java since you should probably hold back a version and ensure all the bugs and security holes are patched.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns


    I agree - new OS = new problems and is a bit of a non-issue. The thing is though, all the Mac fanbois were slating Vista (even before it launched!) because it "has some compatibility problems".

    At least allow us Windows users to return the sentiment.

  28. Chris

    @Peter, Not the error, dear boy

    It's the fact they aren't fronting up to the snafu. It's not as if Java is some minor unused app and they forgot to compatability test it - as you could fairly argue with the "enhancement" BSOD story.

  29. Test Man
    Thumb Down

    Re: Java on Mac

    Hold on... so Apple gets to make Java tools. How come Sun lets them do that, but don't let Microsoft do the same thing, eh?

  30. Jack Moxley
    Dead Vulture


    Well its not divx, I installed fine with it preinstalled in 10.4.

    Mind you I am not impressed with the UI all those dark colours make for a very depressing OS, I think market share is going to go down just down to the increased suicide rate of the fanbase. Message call to Apple "metal and black" is so 90's you in danger of going retro.

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    Re: Peter Labrow

    Since Apple is repeatedly touted by fanboys, and in their own adverts, as the best way to fix all your PC problems, any failing of their OS, even a new version, especially failings which have been highlighted many, many times as reasons for using something other than Windows (eg problems on upgrade) are important to remind people that these problems exist across all OS' and not just Windows. If the same thing happened to Vista every Mac fanboy who reads The Reg would be up in arms telling users to buy a Mac instead.

    Considering the idea that Macs "just work" whereas PCs constantly have problems or need driver downloads, or need patching constantly, I think this is perfectly newsworthy. It makes perfect sense that Java should run on Leo, and Gosling, while not always the most restrained individual, expressing disatisfaction says it all.

  32. Jeroen Braamhaar
    Black Helicopters

    @Peter Labrow

    If it was a true "new OS" you'd be right.

    However, one might reasonably expect an incemental update on an existing OS to not break development tools so badly ... or to have such issues with installation. (I won't vouch for the presence of 3rd party tools given how badly those are coded sometimes - but in most of THOSE cases the finger can be pointed back at the OS developers for not leaving enough application/driver space/documentation as well)

    I almost daresay, Apple has taken a page out of the book from the Robbers from Redmond when it comes to shifting blame ....

  33. Paul
    Paris Hilton

    Oooh 24 hours

    24 hours.

    So that would be on Sunday then. Hmm... not getting a response on a weekend to an email sent from a journalist.

    And how long do you think the Java problem will exist? Because once it's on the DVD there's no way of fixing it, eh? Fixed in stone.

    The sky is falling! The sky is falling!

  34. Chris Morrison

    @Peter Labrow

    Two words fanboy

    Here's your coat.

  35. jai


    "This is a show stopper for me, and I will have to revert to 10.4, since my job as a software engineer for Sun requires Java 6"

    what professional developer worth their salt would upgrade their key development environment without first testing it on a backup/test machine? and who upgrades a work environment on the first weekend of a new OS being available anyway?

    anyone with half a brain will wait for all the bugs to be ironed out by consumers and possibly for the first patch to come out and then try it out on a test environment before going ahead and upgrading their production machine.

  36. Anthony Hulse

    Another reason why I'm staying put on Tiger for now

    Having done the 10.2 -> 10.3 and 10.3 -> 10.4 transitions already and watched various apps suddenly no longer work, I'm sitting this one out until a few update patches are issued. The trouble with Mac users is we're too keen to jump into the new stuff but then start bitching when it doesn't immediately work perfectly. If you step out of Job's Reality Distortion Field and realise that you actually don't need the latest OS until software you use starts making use of or requiring it, you tend to find your Mac experience goes a lot smoother.

  37. Joey


    Steve promised Leopard in October and delivered - ready or not! Unfortunately, the GM build was released to developers AFTER it was released to the public. There will be incompatibilities.

    Leopard installed just fine on my Mac Mini which is pretty clean as I only use it for compatibility testing and running Windows. I was able to do a clean install on a G5 Dual 2Ghz but I can't get it to install over 10.4.10 even though I have none of the said haxies.

    On the whole, when installed, it runs as it says on the box and I haven't found any major problems with any software I use. I haven't had the BSOD on any of my four Macs - although the G5 upgrade situation gives me the grey screen of not booting - which needs to be sorted.

    I avoid Java like the plague.

  38. James

    Of course java is a "first-class citizen" on OS X

    Suspicion, censorship, offhanded rejection... has Apple been taking citizenship lessons from

  39. Simon

    @Peter Labrow

    Pete, you made what i would consider a fairly neutral comment there, for certain it wasnt attacking anyone specifically. Maybe the flamers are just bored and this is some pathetic form of entertainment for them.

    Im shocked at these people who have suddenly attacked you and declared you a "Fan boy" what a bunch of hostile people they are.

    I always found the Reg a good read but its a bit offputting knowing i'm reading the news alongside some clearly childish fellow readers.

    "Bwah bwah bwah, My Sinclair spectrum is better than your Commodore 64, etc"

    Oh how things have still not changed....

    (Right, on with my tin hat)

  40. Giles Jones Gold badge

    @Anonymous Coward - Compilers

    To answer your question, does the average PC user know what a compiler is?

    Mac users are in no way less IT savvy than PC users. Just because they like to spend our time using computers and being creative instead of building computer and overclocking does not mean they don't know anything about them.

    I installed Leopard last night and I've had no problems with it at all, I was playing back a music composition in Logic Studio without a glitch (even though Spotlight was indexing my hard disk). Timing and audio stability Windows users can only dream of.

    Vista can't even play an mp3 without throttling the network traffic:

  41. Graham Wood

    @Test Man

    I think you're looking at it too simplistically.

    Microsoft weren't stopped because they were releasing a Java - they were stopped because what they were releasing was called 'Java' and didn't follow the spec.

    If Apple's version of Java is "standards compliant", or whatever the equivalent marketing speak is for Java, then Sun will have no problem with it.

    Sun jumped on Microsoft because code written for their JVM would not run on anyone else's - or indeed on any other OS - which is against what Sun want(ed?) out of Java.

  42. The Other Steve
    Jobs Horns

    RE : Still the best Java platform

    Erm, except it isn't, is it. Not if it can't keep up with the current standard. I don't know what it's like for apple fanbois, but my windows desktops download the new version of JRE as soon as it's available. This is a feature of Java, not the OS.

    So you're saying that an OS where Java doesn't update itself, and in the case of 1.6, can't update itself, is the best platform to develop on ?

    Think yourself lucky you don't work for me, or you'd be polishing up your CV.

    @Apple apologists

    Get used to it. You all jumped all over Vista for every tiny little flaw when it came out, which IMO is fair enough, but you have to accept that the same will happen for the latest shiny turd that apple poops out as well. It *is* news. It's new information about a new IT product. How is that *not* news ? Just because apple won't tell you about it doesn't make it un-newsworthy, quite the opposite in fact.

    @Early adopters

    Seriously, WTF is your problem ? Leopard has been available for what ? 48 hours or something ? And you're surprised there are problems ? You installed it on a production system ? Jesus, and I thought the linux fanbois were dense.

  43. Anonymous Coward

    Mac - "It jsut worrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr$^&*#%^&

    Oh dear...

    (Karma really is a bitch, isn't it?)

  44. Anonymous Coward

    Re: Java on Mac

    Um, except Microsoft does have their own Java implementation, it's just that nobody in their right mind uses it.

    This is a pretty big deal, it's as bad as if Vista came out and the latest version of .NET just didn't work -- sure, Microsoft wouldn't let that happen, but the net effect is the same. But I guess these problems will always be around as long as Apple insists on deploying their own JVM, and I get the feeling that they Apple doesn't entirely want Java to be successful on their platform.

    And to the jokers saying "serves 'em right for not waiting for service pack 5!", full of yourselves much? God forbid anyone wants to be an early adopter, especially when they're spending their own time on it and not forcing anyone else to install anything. I know a developer showing initiative is the mortal enemy of IT staff throughout the galaxy and should be punished severely, but you can't win every battle in these dark times.

    And especially for an OS that supposedly never has any problems and "just works", and has a release hailed as the second coming of Christ by the community at large. This is pretty blatant and you'd think the Java community would've been warned about this a few weeks out before release.

    Oh well, it's not like there's a ton of places running on anything newer than Java 1.4.2 (or 1.3.1 in some places). Try to upgrade by one minor version number or God forbid, use a different JRE vendor, and bam, half your ramshackle corporate intranet "applications" won't start up anymore. Write once run anywhere!

  45. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    There there...

    As ever the Apple fanbhouys are arrogant and aggressive.

    I am amazed that a "Third party" application caused all the trouble. I didn't know any 3rd parties bothered.....:-)

    Sorry guys but it just don't work, so live with it. I'm sure that Apple will get around to a fix, after pretending for as long as possible ther's no problem to fix.

  46. Alan Donaly


    Never said I was a Java developer I was and am developing Java code for a project. I was in a hurry earlier but you must really get a kick out of amanfromMars . I do math just fine. I wasn't buying a laptop and I ended up building a PC myself.

  47. SpitefulGOD
    Gates Halo






  48. Ivan Headache

    @Does the average Mac user even know what a compiler is?

    Does the average windows user?

  49. Peter Labrow

    Re: Peter Labrow posts

    Nice to see lots of people assuming that I'm a Mac fan boy just because I said that problems happen with any new OS - which was the source of my comment about it not being news, not about Apple deleting posts from its support site (which clearly is). For the record, I am actually Microsoft partner who uses XP, Vista - and also Mac OS and even Linux - because I do a lot of testing on Web sites. So I'm not a 'fan boy' I'm just sensible. I would not apply a one-day old OS to any machine that my livelihood depended on; if I did, and something went wrong, I wouldn't be so daft as to start screaming about it - I'd just quietly roll back to my backup. Oh, no backup? Oh dear, that is careless!!

    Mac OS is a good OS, and I'm not a Mac fan boy. I just have in-depth experience of more than one OS; one wonders if those people shouting 'fan boy' can say the same. Anyone who thinks that any new OS doesn't come with some 'issues' is in denial about the reality of software development - however much testing you do, issues come out in the wild.

    Clearly, if Apple is deleting support posts, that's really unhelpful to all of those with this problem - separate issue from what I said though.

    Hope that helps. Now leave me alone, I'm a sensitive soul!

  50. antonio


    The fact that Java 1.6 is not ready for leopard is not the problem. It will, given that it was already available for tiger. Surely, Apple want it to take advantage of the leopard features, and delaying the release of Leopard just for this would be non-sense. If you are a Mac developer "sensu-stricto" (i.e. a Cocoa Developer), possibly you couldn't care less about Java.

    However, the real problem is that Java on Macs (even in the "classic" era) has always been in late. I am a Java developer (and also a Mac fanboy) and this issue always prevented me to adopt MacOSX as main developing system. Even if I don't need the latest JDK for the development, the fact that I can use it and try it only months after it has been available on the other platforms makes me a bit uncomfortable. And, finally, how long did it take to have Java3D available on Mac?

  51. Donald Atkinson

    Who ever claimed Java 6 was part of Leopard?

    Apple sure never said anything of the sort. Apple had a months old beta version of Java 6 out there but nowhere have they said that it would be done and part of Leopard.

    Tiger runs Java 5, Leopard runs Java 5 with a few 64 bit add ins.

    Anyone who bought Leopard expecting to find Java 6 or expecting that a months old beta Java 6 would function is an absolute idiot.

  52. Joe Cooper
    Jobs Horns

    @ Giles Jones

    "Apple makes machines for home users primarily, they're also good for design and media. While some developers like these machines, to say they're unusable just because they don't have the latest Java is stupid."

    Are you serious?

    All platforms cater to developers, because that's how they get software. Developers have to be treated with respect if you want software that is on par with what's available on your competitor's platform.

    Otherwise you get situations like the Intel Mac version of Photoshop, or lack thereof.

    This is the same sort of thing. If Apple told everyone five years in advance, "Hey we're dumping Java in several years", than that would be great. But no, they refuse to talk to anyone so they can spring it on developers at the last minute.

    And that makes them monumental wankers.

    Microsoft, for all their warts, bends over backwards for developer and makes a great IDE and tells developers way ahead what is going on. So now in 2007 we have Vista which pushes .NET, includes it by default but is still backwards compatible as well as it can possibly be. And I knew about .NET all the way back in the late 90s because Microsoft made lots of noise about it and even sent registered developers a package of information about it via-snail mail.

    These are specific examples but there's a mountain of them. It's a consistent pattern.

  53. Nick Collingridge

    Almost unbelievable...

    I can't believe the hysteria of all the people who are so desperate to attack Leopard because it is not absolutely perfect at release. Shall we step back and look at this in a more rational light? There seem so far to be two issues with the initial release of Leopard - firstly that a long-obsolete version of a hack (APE) causes systems to fail to boot correctly. This problem can be corrected and it doesn't cause any damage to the operating system installation, but it's obviously unfortunate. But this is just ONE incompatible piece of software we're talking about.

    Secondly the fact that the latest version of Java is not YET available on Leopard. This is an issue that only really affects developers and will probably be resolved shortly. Yes, Apple should provide more information on this issue and (hopefully) they probably will. The VAST majority of people will not be affected in any way whatsoever by this issue.

    And that appears to be it. These are the only two issues after the release of a new version of an operating system that has been VEY substantially overhauled top to bottom, probably to an equivalent degree to the overhaul that Vista represented over XP, but in just 2.5 years rather than the 5 years that Vista took.

    Is it surprising that Apple supporters feel that those who are trying to blow this up are making somewhat of a mountain out of an anthill? Can you lot honestly say that Vista had an equivalently low number of problems at release? That is, that there were otherwise no problems with performance, drivers not being available, application compatibility, user acceptance, or the 64 bit transition with full compatibility with all apps and drivers?

    Come on, get real! Look at yourselves in this light and you can understand why Apple supporters think that you are somewhat ridiculous in your attempts to make mileage out of all of this...

  54. Outcast

    1 lump or 2 ?


    Oo.. I'll have a cup of that please.

    AmigaOs4 <s>L</s>user here !!

  55. Curtis W. Rendon

    JAVA on BSD

    seldom works because of the mix of proprietary and bizarre in the compile, and precoded binaries aren't available.

    I've given up on multi-hour compiles on the JDK just to have it fail because of some linux extension to gcc not being available.

    I'll stick to python and perl. They really do run anywhere (a C compiler has gone before, which is *everywhere*).

  56. Morely Dotes
    Jobs Horns

    @ Anonymous Coward aka MS Fanboi

    "Why not just install Vista you could even use J# then"

    No, you couldn't. Vista doesn't work reliably even now on the Dell "high-end" desktop my employer forced me to accept. I still use XP on an allegedly less-powerful machine to get my job done (and Linux to do anything important).

    Well, let me correct that. You could probably use the J# CD as a beer coaster. Vista, OTOH, is as useful as teats on a Triumph.

    Only a fool uses C# or J# or any other Microsoft-only development platform; the handwriting is on the wall. If you can't see it, pull your head out of Steve Ballmer's arse and look around.

  57. Cyberspice

    Anyone who runs the first version...

    ...of any software is mad.

    I have Leopard and will install it but I'm not overwriting my existing install. I'm taking advantage and upgrading my laptop's hard drive. The existing one will go in an external firewire case and will be bootable.

    BTW my iBook is 2 years old. I'd like to see two year old laptops running Vista Ultimate as well.

  58. elder norm


    AAAggghhhh. Leopard is NOT perfect. RUN. HIDE. Quick everyone, run back to Vista cause it is perfect and STORM really does not exist. RUN RUN.

    Please, give me a break. :-)

  59. Darryl

    "Oh yeah? Well Vista has problems..."

    Trust me, we know. All the Apple apologists and fanbois like to rub it in everybody's face every chance they get. The real issue is that Mac OS-X has problems too. News flash! New operating systems have flaws! Even ones put out by St. Steve! And seriously, is this a major rewrite of the OS? Like the last "Major rewrite" to add an upgraded search feature and a rip-off of Konfabulator? that we all ran out and spent $150 on? In Microsoft's world, that's called a "Service Pack" and it automatically installs overnight. For free.

  60. Mo

    This is hilarious

    First of all, no developer with any sanity would claim that a three-day-old OS being unable to run their apps was “a showstopper”, because they wouldn't be installing the OS on their machines without thoroughly testing it first. The only developers who HAVE installed Leopard immediately are those who a) have machines running older versions of Mac OS X lying around (or are dual-booting; it's pretty trivial), or have been running the developer seeds prior to release and are satisfied with it.

    Second, Leopard isn't “an incremental upgrade”. This isn't Tiger SP1, this is a complete new release of the OS—don't let the .4 to .5 fool you (W2K to XP was a similar point release, incidentally), with *lots* of under-the-hood changes. The ONLY “application” causing the so-called BSODs was Unsanity's Application Enhancer, a program which goes out of its way to install bits of itself in places it's not supposed to, and patches parts of the OS in entirely unsupported ways. The only reason APE is remotely “popular” is because some developers who really should know better (such as Logitech) have insisted on bundling it (unknown to the user) with their applications.

    Third, it wasn't the Apple “fanbois” berating Vista for being crap, it was Windows XP users by and large—unless the Mac user base grew massively and suddenly the day Vista was released. (You'll note also that the anti-Vista camp is still just as vocal many months on, largely because Microsoft hasn't delivered many of the things it said it would).

    This piece, though, is relatively typical take-with-a-pinch-of-salt El Reg reporting. What cracks me up is the comments. The distance between many of the commenters and reality seems be worryingly large.

  61. Tampa Dave

    It's an Apple.

    Who cares?


    Who gives a fsck?

    Hey stupid people: you're too stupid to use GNU/Linux, but not smart enought to pay less for M$.

    File system check (fsck) yo sef, vfat.

  62. Tom Ward

    Flack or Flak?

    Shurely shome mishtake...

  63. Rob

    You were using badly setup PC...

    "...Timing and audio stability Windows users can only dream of....

    ...Vista can't even play an mp3 without throttling the network traffic..."

    A very badly setup PC. I use a combination of PC's and Macs for my work and I can safely say the Vista machine hasn't caused me any grief (neither has the Mac). Both are used for graphics, video editing, DVD production and soundtracks.

    Even my Vista at home has no trouble playing MP3's with no impact on the network.

    Prehaps if people actually knew what they were setting up and set it up right for their needs most of the back and forth bitching would stop. But then asking an average creative about machine settings is asking a bit much.

  64. Ivan Headache

    ... that we all ran out and spent $150 on?

    Did we?

    I don't remember doing it.

    Isn't it strange that in this world where (it would appear) that windows zealots hear of one person's bad experience with a mac update (or anything else to do with a mac for that matter), it suddenly becomes a global issue that has affected every single mac user in the world?

    It shows a deep sense of insecurity - is it the realisation that their gravy-train (if they work in windows support) could possibly now be at risk?

    I have a number of clients who have ditched windows and switched over to macs (and couldn't be happier) and one client who uses a networked Foxpro windows database. When the trainer came to do the tuition he was rather surprised to find the girls sitting at Mac laptops!

    I tell a story (although it's rather old now - but the premise still holds) about a time when I worked in an office that had a network of about 30 macs and a separate network of over 200 Pcs. There was a support staff of 6 that doubled inside a year to support those PCs. On the mac side, a man came in for one afternoon a month just to check that everything was still hunky dory.

    And just to conclude. I installed Leopard last night on my own machine. No problems what so ever (I don't like one of two of the changes - go on - make that a global issue) and it now starts up from cold in 32 seconds.

  65. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "Prehaps if people actually knew what they were setting up and set it up right for their needs most of the back and forth bitching would stop. But then asking an average creative about machine settings is asking a bit much"

    Absolutely spot on Rob! Who cares which platform anyone uses?

    The point is you have to learn how to use it and think BEFORE you change things.

    I use Windows because I've used it for over 20 years and I am comfortable with it. My set up doesn't crash, doesn't get viruses and is fast as lightning - but I am still running XP and will continue to do so until Vista seems reliable.

    I have a spare Laptop I am using to try and learn about Linux (not much luck yet, but I persevere), and if I had a Mac I would learn about Mac. Anyone claiming Windows/Mac/Linux is the best in all situations and for all people is talking rubbish. I create music using my PC, almost none of the programs I use will run on either Mac or Linux so why would I switch? Horses for courses!

    Oh and for everyone who says what's so interesting about Leopard's problems, it is NEWS, that's all!

  66. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Surely it shouldn't be necessary in this day and age to know how to set up a PC so that playing MP3s doesn't cause slowdowns of any type? Because let's face it, probably 95% of people out there don't know how to do so. Certainly it's at least that in my experience. So to use this as a defence of that particular problem is rather misjudged, to say the least. And OK, you COULD play around with reNICEing applications on MacOSX if you really wanted to, but you just don't have to - the system sorts it out for you. And that's how it should be.

    But maybe Rob's post was meant ironically?

    Oh, and for those who talk of Apple "Fanbois" - clearly you think that by using that term you're very cleverly insulting people in a very derogatory way. But in fact the strength of your derision actually acts against you, because you're simply exposed as a person who can't control their emotions and so has to resort to unhinged generic insults without looking at the issues rationally and from a balanced perspective.

  67. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Applying the simplest analysis - it was in the ADC builds. It was pulled just before the GM. QED - it's coming but it missed the cutoff date for the release.

    Quite why Apple can't simply be upfront about that I don't know - it's the iPhone SDK all over again - at no point did they say one wasn't coming, at no point did they say one was coming, instead leaving people to interpret the statements from Steve Jobs for clues.

    More seriously - and no one is commenting here - there are reports that Java 5 is broken on Leopard, so I'd wager their Java developers have been put onto fixing that first, before completing Java 6.

    Making an educated guess after reading the Ars review, and the nature of the problems people are reporting, it probably relates to the changes in the way the UI is being rendered on Leopard (which given the way Apple's Java implentation uses native widgets where possible will have affected Java).

    (The version of Ruby, on the other hand, exists as a bridge on top of Cocoa, so presumably doesn't have the same issues, as the underlying changes are abstracted by the Cocoa layer).

    >Why can't people just install Java 1.6 as released for BSD, or Linux?

    >Yes, it would need a recompile, but it ought to work. Isn't that the point of Posix?

    I'd imagine you'd also have to run the UI within X11 (if there is a GUI version of Java that runs on standard X?).

    As I understand it, the Linux version of Java uses GTK or a similar UI library that hasn't been ported to OS X.

    To reply to some criticisms (therefore making me an irrational fanboy)

    >lol the way Mac users go on and on about how stable their OS is, how full of features and how it never crashes amazes me.

    Well, generally speaking, it IS a lot more stable. Generally speaking, it doesn't crash.

    If that amazes you, then you're making the erroneous presumption that most OS crash like Windows/Classic MacOS (historically) did. The instability of microcomputer OS was more of an aberation from the norm than the norm.

    (Yes, every OS I've used has had bugs and quirks).

    I think what you actually mean is 'I've been waiting to feel this moment of schadenfreude for some time'.

    What is evident is that Apple's quality control has really gone downhill this year - a real feeling that shipping dates are taking priority over quality.

    It turns out the BSOD on the upgrade is most likely caused by a Logitech installed kernel hack, but it's not as if Logitech mice are actually uncommon (although maybe inside Apple's test facilities?).

    >In Microsoft's world, that's called a "Service Pack" and it automatically installs overnight. For free

    Not quite. Service packs are largely funded by the huge number of corporate annual licences - i.e. they are an expected part of what we pay for.

    Apple's revenue model is quite different. (It's more like giving Visual Studio away for free but charging users for new versions of .NET).

    There's also a lot of change under the hood - go read the Ars review for detail.

    >Does the average Mac user even know what a compiler is?

    Hoho indeed. Compared to the average Windows user, quite possibly.

    I'm basing that on the smaller number of Mac users, full stop, and the proportionally large number at developer conferences, suggesting that a higher percentage of Mac users are developers - although this percentage is obviously declining as the Mac

    crawls out from it's 'design' niche into becoming a popular consumer machine.

    Which is why this is an issue - their developer communications strategy is a joke, as is their enterprise marketing. As the focus swings towards the consumer side of the business, these communities need reassurance they are not being abandoned - and we expect to be treated in a more grown-up manner than removing features with no explanation and deleting comments.

    We can handle things missing their delivery date (software developers are generally more understanding than consumers in that respect because most of us have done it).

    >you're too stupid to use GNU/Linux

    And this one just made me smile . . half the time it's supposed to be so easy to use, anyone can. The rest of the time, using Linux is somehow a sign of intelligence. (Just like reading Book A or listening to Band X is somehow a sign of intelligence). Clue - you are not what you install.

  68. Danny
    Jobs Horns

    @anonymous coward

    'But in fact the strength of your derision actually acts against you, because you're simply exposed as a person who can't control their emotions and so has to resort to unhinged generic insults without looking at the issues rationally and from a balanced perspective.

    Yes, let's see a balanced perspective. Here is a typical Apple fanboy response to some common articles:

    MS patch causes crash - crappy MS,buy a mac

    MS delay release - Apple release on time, buy a mac

    MS announce new product - Call that innovative, they stole it from ..., buy a mac

    MS announce new OS - It will still be crap, buy a mac

    New virus alert - Wouldn't happen on OSX, buy a mac

    Linux kernel unstable - buy a mac

    New linux desktop - looks just like windows it's crap/looks like OSX, shows how good OSX is if it's being copied

    MS announce service pack - Fixing all the problems they left in on release, wouldn't have needed it with OSX, buy a mac

    Apple patch causes problems - Can't be Apples fault, must be something 3rd party

    Apple announce service pack - sorry new OS - Great lets go and blow another £85

    Apple announce new model - Hooray another opportunity to get blatently ripped off for rubbish foxconn hardware and a sense of smugness

    Apple release new ipod - Oh wow, I can go and give Apple another £150 for an inferior mp3 player and get tied into the itunes shop at the same time, bargain.

    Apple announce Iphone - It must be so cool cos it's Apple, we don't need all the features that come as standard on a real phone and we will happily pay through the nose for the smugness factor.

    Apple upgrade causes problem - it's not Apples fault it must be 3rd party, buy a mac

    Apple hardware found to have major design flaw - it's not Apples fault, scream loudly about how it can't be Apples fault, find some way to turn it into a MS bashing issue and sulk when everybody else takes the opportunity to laugh at the smug bastards

    So yes Mr coward, a balanced perspective would be nice. However those deemed as fanboys usually follow the above example almost to the letter and as such are incapable of forming any opinion that would throw Apple into any doubt.

    3 words guaranteed to get a fanboy rant:

    Apple Are Crap

  69. Steven Raith
    Thumb Up

    RE Anon ["whatever"] and Danny

    Nice post oh nameless one, not sure why you hide your name, but hey, your choice.

    I've actually written this post about four times now, and each time I read it over and I'm sure it sounds arsey....but regardless....!

    I've actually met a *lot* of Mac buyers, by virtue of selling Macs [for PC World - hey, it was a job...] and being pretty damned technical myself, I can honestly say that out of the 50+ I sold, [and the dozens of ones I didn't - not a natural salesperson, me] I could count the number on one hand who were actually 'techy' - the rest just wanted something that would *work*.

    A suitable comparison would be people who buy a Caterham kit car in pieces to build it and drive it, to people who buy a Merc SLK to just drive it.

    Some people have an interest in getting their hands dirty, whereas most...really don't want to at all. On a similar note I'll put a round on Kimi Raikonnen not getting kicks out of stripping down and rebuilding gearboxes when he isn't racing rather well in his F1 car.

    Being good with something doesn't make you technically adept in the mucky parts of it.

    My experience of Mac users is that most would rather keep their cuticles clean and get on with actually working, rather than recompiling apps to get them to work. That was the whole point of them buying a Mac rather than a Windows machine.

    So I'm afraid your 'mac users must be techy because there is less of them' argument, to bollocks, from my *real world experience*. There again, my real world experience *was* PC World. Honestly, I needed the money, it was better than testing photocopiers and working in callcentres when I first moved down here. I never inhaled, etc.

    Danny...after fifteen years of pissing about with Windows, Mac OS 8-X [not much lately tho I'm afraid to say] and more recently, Linux via K/Ubuntu and Mandriva, I can safely say that I'm not a fanboy of any particular brand and that any time I have early adopted [or been subject to early adoption by virtue of being asked to look at peoples machines] I have been pissed on from high by some kind of failing, simply because of the 'OhMyGod Beta and RC testing really doesn't get all the bugs, does it?' effect. Nothing ever, ever works until at least six months after general release, FACT.

    They All Do That, Sir, you see. I honestly fail to see the point in bashing Brand X because every bloody OS comes out with bugs of some kind, some worse than others, and to expect otherwise is the mark of a dribbling retard.

    To then take the piss out of another 'rival' OS for the same things your OS suffered from - and it did, in some form, at some point - is a pot/kettle/racism charge of monstrous proportions.

    However, it is great fun, so fair play to sticking the knife in to [insert OS here]. Feels good, dunnit? :-D

    Anyway, bring back DOS 6.22 and Himem/Dos4GW I say, and stuff the receptionists who don't know how to tab between fields....

    Steven R

    Posting from Ubuntu at home, writing zerotouch Vista images at work, eyeing up MacMinis for HDTV playback in a few months...and taking considering self-immolation for admitting to working at PC World....*shudders*

  70. Michael

    Not Apple's problem...

    I can never understand why so many people out there expect the OS to conform to the demands of the application. Isn't it the application vendor's job to make their application compatible with an OS they want it to run on?? What I'm wondering is why the devs for Java didn't update their software, as I'm almost certain they received an advance copy of Leopard for that very reason.

  71. Anonymous Coward

    Common Sense

    Some of you have been like lone voices in the wilderness, speaking common sense and not fandom. I salute you and praise your efforts.

    They don't hear you.

    Fanboys just want to flame. They love it. They live for it.

    I haven't been to any of Apple's forum's but in my experience, when a post has been removed, it's been because of poor taste/language/derogatory remarks toward another poster, or something that violates the user agreement. Unless someone here has written or read one of the removed remarks, who's to say that isn't the reason they were removed? Aren't we jumping to a whole lot of conclusions?

    Operating Systems have bugs. Some have more bugs than others. Some are more stable than others. And some just plain suck. And anyone who puts a brand spanking new OS on a work machine on the first day of release has no business being in the IT business, in any field. Period. I actually used MS Me for longer than I needed to because I was leery of XP; I am probably one of the few people I know who had no problems with that OS. I didn't upgrade until just before SP2, when I built the box I'm using now. I'm a realist enough to NOT say "I've had no problems with this, therefore YOU must be doing something wrong." Walk a mile in their shoes first before spouting off, or open mouth and insert foot.

    No software is perfect, and always plays nicely with others. I've had to remove several pieces because it trashed something else. I can't use PowerDVD because of incompatibilities, it's easy for me to believe a third party software is causing Leopard's BSOD (Wait! BSOD? On a MAC? STOP THE PRESSES! APPLE'S NOT PERFECT!).

    Where's amanfromMars when you need him?

  72. Henry Wertz

    Sorry guys but...

    Sorry guys, but this Windows versus MacOSX flamewar is just silly; they both suck nuts. 8-).


    So, anyway, I would guess (assuming Java 1.6 even existed for MacOSX 10.4, which posters can't seem to quite agree on..) that Java 1.6 broke in 10.5 because of the new stack-smashing protection stuff in 10.5. I vaguely recall JRE having problems early on with the hardened linux variants.

  73. Simon Taylor

    When will everyone grow up?

    Why all these stupid, endless pointless "my OS is better than your OS"? Do you think that anyone will change their positions because of what you say?

    Here's my experience with Vista (I have limited experience of Macs and enough of Linux to say "nice try, might be ready for mass market in a few years").

    I read the horror stories and went ahead anyway. The only driver I got in advance was for my NIC as with a network connection, I could fix anything.

    The upgrade itself was flawless and painless. I didn't count the number of times I interacted with setup but it was a small number (product ID, keyboard and region and timezone I think). My TV tuner and graphics cards didn't work, which I expected, but installing the latest drivers brought them on line. Since then, I've had no problems at all, zero. It "just works". As to aesthetics, and of course this will always be subjective, it is at least as good looking at OS X. The performance is great, even with 512MB of RAM on the box I upgraded (and yes, that's with Aero). It's also easy to use. Certainly, my folks, who know not one word technical, will be able to use Vista with ease.

    Now of course, we could get into some feature by feature p*ssing competition but what's the point? Vista does what I need, without hassle. Will I continue to buy MS? Well, why woudn't I?

    Finally, regarding security, I don't believe Macs or Linux are invincible, in fact I believe the number of exploits discovered is proportional to the installed base size, but I practice safe computing. I don't use an admin account for my everyday work. I use anti-malware software, a good firewall and a lot of common sense. And just like the guy in the Mac ads, I don't get viruses or other malware. I wait with mild amusement for the inevitable down to earth bump that so many people will get when their own particular flavour of invincible OS connected to a network becomes the target of some shysters attention.

    If you love Mac, then good on ya. If you love Linux, then good on ya. I love Windows, good on me.

    PS. I am very technical, I'm not stupid, I've been in IT for 20 years covering most roles and I make a concious decision to stick with Windows. Enjoy your technology folks.

  74. Alex
    Thumb Down

    Not buying until Java 6 is available

    Out of protest, I won't get Leopard until Java 6 is available.

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