back to article Apple code of secrecy imperils Aunt Mildred

Those who use Apple's iTunes or QuickTime on either a Mac or Windows machine, or who own an iPod touch, will want to install newly released updates that fix a raft of serious security bugs. Not that Apple is going out of its way to warn of the risks, mind you. The most serious of the batch seem to be updates for QuickTime, …


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  1. Martin VanderBoon

    Oh Yes - iTunes 8 also causes BSOD on Vista

    Their latest iTunes software is causing many people to encounter BSOD on Vista PCs (32 & 64 bit). There's a discussion thread at, someone also stuck something up on Digg

    I added my comments to the Apple discussion thread, including a link to the Digg article and lo-and-behold my posts were deleted and my account banned from making further posts.

    Error User 'Pi55ed-off-with-apple' not allowed to post.

    So beware if you install iTunes 8 !!!! and don't complain either !!!!

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Thanks for that. I'll be not updating for a while then. I rather like being able to use my computer.

    Oh, and how is "Apple gives shitty update description" newsworthy? They do it EVERY SINGLE TIME.

    Oh, and I'm looking forward to having to sync all my music and everything again after 2.1 fails and requires a destructive restore. It only takes 2 hours.

  3. Antony Riley
    Thumb Up


    I'm assuming the 55s are to bypass a swearing filter, and I'd also assume they could ban/remove your posts based on that.

    You should have used:


    On that note, I'm off to get a cup of tea.

  4. Andrew Vaughan


    "Oh, and how is "Apple gives shitty update description" newsworthy? They do it EVERY SINGLE TIME."

    And they won't change unless we call them out on it EVERY SINGLE TIME.

    It (sort of) worked for MS.

  5. John Chadwick

    Here's a handy hint....

    I've always found that being polite and constructive with support forums, analysts and whatever gets you a lot further than being abusive and sarcastic.

    Give yourself a derogatory name and you really won't get taken that seriously.

    BTW, you should know by now never to download an x.0 of anything, always wait for x.1, unless you just want to test it.

  6. James
    Thumb Up

    It seems fine for me,

    I've downloaded it and sync my Ipod about an hour ago and all seems fine from here. I'm using a Macbook pro and can see no problems at all.

    So far, so good!

  7. Anonymous Coward

    Aunt Mildred

    No disrespect, but lets be honest - Aunt Mildred isn't going to update her software - ever - unless its during a visit by a techie relative or directed to over the phone.

    Perhaps the irony is the only way to get non tech family members to do such things is to say 'if the computer pops up a box, click yes and enter your password if it wants it' which is obviously dangerous.

    Even if she does she isn't going to be reading the text which again, let's be honest here, she is less likely to understand if it's full of detailed security fixes (which isn't to say I approve of Apple's blatant failure to disclose important security issues, I don't - Apple need to be a bit more forthcoming with their failings).

    The solution to Aunt Mildred is training her to save her work regularly then a scheduled machine wake up at 3am followed by

    softwareupdate --install --all

    Then later a 'shutdown now'

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Itunes 8

    Another result for Apples testing department, ITunes 8 isn't working on my Vista machine and all this comes after Steve Jobs promise to make things better after the last shambolic release!

    Have they no professional pride?

  9. The BigYin

    What pissed me off... the way "MobileMe" keeps reappearing. I never asked for "MobileMe", I have no use for it, so why did it install? If you want rid of the "MobileMe" balls, just uninstall the Apple Mobile Device support (it's called something like that).

    Seems to me that the Apple upgrade system is acting like malware or a trojan.

    Apple fanbois - your messiah is actually a devil!

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Halo

    iTunes vista killer shocker.


    buy an O/s thats not ten years out of date then.

  11. Rob Crawford

    Genius is truely a work of genius in iTunes8

    When you truely appreciate what a wonderful addition of iTunes it is

    Hilight a track, select Genius and it returns a list of tracks by the same artist and also a list of tracks with the same name. At best it managed something like Amazons also purchased thingie

    Smoke & mirrors or what

    Personally I could manage that on my own.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Adobe CS3 too?

    Any word about updates for Bonjour installed by Adobe CS3 suite (by stealth)?

  13. heystoopid

    Interesting crApple Forum

    Interesting aspect of crApple forums , if you have real problems with O'SUX they are the last option to use , since they are always far too busy praising the god of jobs to notice there is anything amiss in the real world of real hardware , meanwhile the linux central and windoze forums are totally the opposite .

    Choices ?

  14. Edwin
    Jobs Horns

    Apple security updates

    ...I started ignoring that bloody tool once it started pushing me to install bloody safari on my PC.

    Good thing I don't use iTunes or an iPod - I rather like my drag-n-drop MP3 player...

  15. Bloodwin
    Jobs Horns

    Genius is an idiot

    Genius as a way to get you to listen to more tunes is interesting but the curent offerings are frankly rubbish. To test out the '"Genius" I was listening to some luvy duvy Soul music slow smoochy stuff. What did it suggest? Well it got the Soul/R&B stuff but it didn't have a clue about the mood. Mood killers are not useful at all. Next comes the iTunes store suggestions from the "Genius" and it suggested a bunch of songs I ALREADY OWN!!!! This is so basic it's not funny.

    The Grid view is utter rubbish too. I very rarely play full albums - I much prefer my own playlists. You can't seem to click on an album to see the tracks like in coverflow either. Very poor.

    I like my mac, I like my iPhone and my iPod touch. What I don't like is Apple trying to predict my tastes. Sure it's early days but until they even get decent tempo indicators they can forget it. The last thing I need is to be listening to Barry White gettin' in the mood for lurve and then have MC Hammer singing "You can't thouch this..."

    ( Enjoy singing that all day by the way :D )

  16. EnricoSuarve


    "Dooo, dooby doo, dumty doo - Hammer Time!!"

    [hides back in cubicle as others look around for the source]

    I don't know whether to thank you or curse you

    "Can't touch this"


    "Break it down"


  17. Muscleguy
    Gates Halo

    Different on a Mac

    I updated this morning and on a Mac (10.4) the QT and itunes updates are listed and explained separately. The QT update specifically mentioned security updates.

    No problems with itunes but I will not be turning on Genius. Nowhere near enough for me in it and I have carefully mined my Library myself, thankyou.

  18. Pete Wood

    And just how big does a video viewer need to be?

    So I picked up an Apple quicktime update the other day. Probably have to do it again now, but hey, that's (apparently some sort of) life. But just how big does a bloody video player need to be?

    Your article page shows the problem - a screenshot saying that you get iTunes - which I don't want - as well as quicktime, the whole bloody lot taking up 80Mbytes, a significant download time and (on my fairly beefy XP PC) an absolute yawning aaaaaage to install!

    Compared to this, the monthly micro$oft update is a semi-automated doddle. I thought Apple were supposed to be the UI experts?


  19. chris
    Thumb Down


    Windows XP users who prefer not to install Safari are still getting notified to install "the fastest and easiest [and unsecured] web-browser for the PC".

  20. iSuff44

    Genius sucks

    Agreed if I wanted to match my music style I would I don't need iTunes doing it for me and choosing the wrong songs, pile of plop! New nanos look good though funny how they have reverted back to the thin shape and got rid of the fat nano with the old colours, fashion is an odd thing my Atari 2600 will be hip again at this rate!!!

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Chris Morley

    When i found bonjour running on my pc (it starts with windows) I immediately assumed it was malware and removed it forcibly, well rterminated it, disabled the service and uninstalled it. then ran spybot and antivirus scans.

    On a bit of further research i found out that iTunes had installed it for some reason, still not sure what it does or why it, along with 5 other itunes componants, need to start with windows.

    Is asking the user if they want to install certain componants too much to ask for? And why does everything need to be running all the time? starting something when itunes starts and stopping it when itunes closes isn't that hard to do.

  22. StooMonster
    Jobs Halo

    Genius is a genius

    iTunes 8 works perfectly both on my MacBook Pro and on my super-gaming / hardcore Excel Vista 64-bit PC -- both installed smoothly and problem free.

    I chose to upload my 2500 CDs ripped in Loss-less to Genius and then let it make some playlists for me; and I have to say the dance- and alternative-music selections I tried were excellent playlists that picked all sorts of tracks from different artists that worked pretty well together ... I was really quite impressed.

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Whatever happened to patching old versions?

    Most companies seem to quite like their customers and will continue to issue critical patches for their old versions long after the new version has shipped. Apple for some reason seem to think it's acceptable simply to force you to implement a major version upgrade just to get the latest security patch.


  24. Martin Edwards
    Jobs Halo

    I think it's ideal

    I can't speak for the Windows version, but on OS X (as Muscleguy says above), Software Update lists the iTunes and QuickTime updates separately, and each has a line in the description that reads "For detailed information on the security content of this update, please visit...". The QuickTime update also says "...changes that increase reliability, improve application compatibility and enhance security...".

    I think that's ideal: the average user doesn't get bogged down reading the details, while the curious and the technically-minded can follow the links and read them. They're well-written and clearly laid-out, too.

  25. Colin
    Thumb Down

    Classic Apple

    Let's fix some bugs and put in new ones...

    Installed iTunes 8 on my Vista laptop - BSOD (works if I unplug my HP printer - driver clash?)

    Installed iTunes 8 on my XP Desktop - toolbar doesn't work at all.

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "works if I unplug my HP printer - driver clash?"

    Oh dear. I came across problems with an old HP PSC2500 driver and XP. Install the driver on a bare XP and it was fine, once you started installing software it would tend to kill the machine. Many (difficult to install) patches from HP later and it would work. HP support insisted, however, that it wasn't their fault and said, more or less, that everybody else should be compatibility testing for their drivers. Any suggestion that maybe they should compatibility test their drivers with other people's software was pooh poohed.

    So here's a question: How many of the people experiencing problems with iTunes 8.0 and Vista don't have an HP printer?

    And another: If it turns out to be a problem with a buggy print driver rather than iTunes should Apple have to work round it?

  27. Charlie Clark Silver badge

    That's fast

    Only updated iChoons to 7.5 last night and my updates run every week. Me thinks left hand doesn't really know what right hand is doing in Cupertino and doesn't really care. iPple is the new Microsoft.

  28. Kiminao
    Paris Hilton


    Webster Phreaky? Where are you, old son, we miss you and we're worried about you...

    For the rest of you--seriously, you're surprised software BSODs on Vista? Give me a break.

    iTunes 8 installed with no problems on my rock-solid Macbook Pro, OSX 10.5.4.

    Try a real computer instead of a Dell or HP, see what computing can be.

    Paris, because even she knows enough not to use Vista.

  29. James O'Shea
    Jobs Halo

    there's no BSOD on Vista

    I'm typing this listening to music from iTunes 8 on a Vista Business SP1 system. iTunes 8 installed in a matter of minutes, faster than on my iMac, in fact, and is working just fine.

    There may be BSODs on _some people's machines_, but this is demonstrably _not_ a general case.

  30. Colin

    @Anonymous Coward

    Well a trip to the Apple support forums suggests I'm not alone with the BSOD on Vista problem (nor am I the only one who finds unplugging the usb lead to the printer is a work around).

    As for the XP toolbar problem - running a repair install fixed it - seems it works as long as you don't use Apples own software update utility!

    Yes iTunes was originally designed for Mac but surely Apple can't push out Windows versions without proper testing - after all chances are iTunes on Windows has a bigger install base than on Apples own OS.

  31. Martin

    Bonjour & iTunes

    Possibly the Bonjour was added to allow the iPhone "Remote Control" app to communicate with host and iTunes??

  32. B

    A bit of FUD in your article, don't you think?

    "And given the presence of millions of recently compromised websites, how hard can that be?"

    Millions of compromised websites that infect machines by exploiting a Quicktime flaw? Sorry, but that is NOT what your link sent me to. Your article would be more credible if you didn't spread the FUD on so thick.

  33. Anonymous Coward

    Lost CD player on Vista

    I had a client who install iTunes 8.0 today. Rebooted. And found he had lost his CD Player completely. No icon - nothing.

    Tried uninstall Itunes 8.0 - no change.

    System Restore to the moment before iTunes was installed - CD Player returned.

    And to the guys who say "It works on my Mac". Well, I hope it would. Apple should at least be able to get their software tested on their own OS. And I am not surprised at sloppy testing for Microsoft OS's. Look what happens - instead of people blaming a badly written iTunes, they are blaming the OS for the BSOD?!?! ROFL!!! Err... right...

    And I don't know why people still refer to this program as a "music player". It isn't. it is a shop with the ability to also play your music.

  34. James O'Shea
    Jobs Halo

    iTunes, Vista, & ACs

    I have six WinBoxes in my immediate vicinity. Three run Vista Business, two XP Pro, one XP Home. They range from an ancient Dell laptop to a brand-new firebreathing multi-core box with 8 GB RAM, 3 TB disk (in a RAID 5 array) and high-end video cards.

    All of them have iTunes 8 installed. All work just fine. On three of them (two Vista and one of the XP Pro boxes) iTunes installed easier than on my Macs.

    It would appear that the problems some are having are not general problems.

    And, Kiminao... for Christ's sake grow up.

  35. Anonymous Coward
    Gates Halo

    You guys give Windows users a bad name.

    Geeze, the whole lot of you don't know how to run a windows machine do you? 3 XP SP3 and two Vista machines updated flawlessly here. Mind you they're pretty locked down. I know some longtime windows users like to install every shiny bobble that floats by them and that's fine I guess, but you pay in the end. I can't say I've EVER had a Vista blue screen and very rarely an XP one. (That's better than my Mac friend who had a few due to bad RAM) As for those who can't find what gets fixed in this update that's your own incompetence biting you here. Its pretty damn easy to find. Once I'd read through and not found anything that was likely to cause an issue I downloaded the patches to my main machine, tested, then sent it out to my satellite machines. The Bonjour update just to whet everyone's appetite was the patch for the DNS cache poisoning bug. And whoever it was who was harping on the barrage of apple forum posts for this issue, until you figure out that forums magnify the breadth of an issue then you'll still be living in a fantasy world. 300 forums posts for the hundreds of millions of windows users is a damn tiny percentage. I'll say it again, 'You guys give Windows users a bad name'.

  36. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    A point or two

    Running a triple boot system and one of the options is Vista, dunno what some of the writers here are doing but I have NEVER seen a BSOD in the 18 months Ive had it installed. OK, the bulk of my time is spent using XP because I cant be arsed porting over all the apps from my XP install.

    Second point is, why are people installing iTunes ? Got an iPod ? then use one of the free alternatives to get music transferred that dont clutter your HD with Bonjour etc. Only reason to install iTunes is if you want to buy music from Apple, better to buy the cd and rip it to your iPod.

  37. Kiminao
    Paris Hilton


    Telling someone on a tech site message board to "grow up"--that's got to be... a guaranteed successful suggestion! Funny, funny, funny--about as funny as the idea that a Dell running Vista is a solid computing choice!

    Priceless--keep it up, I _implore_ you!

    Paris, because she appreciates things that "grow up," too.

  38. Rob


    hammer time

    Damn you now i've got it stuck in my head.

  39. Aaron


    You guys don't know what Bonjour is? Here you go!

    Valuable piece of software that I have on all my windows machines.

    I digress; Quicktime update? They plainly gave a link in the update pane, that explained all of the security patches, fixes, etc., if you were so inclined to click it.

    iTunes installation problems? Not here.

    Sorry guys you had issues; support forums are there for your convenience when you do have an issue... I'm happy Apple provides and supports them. (It's also their way to monitor and make things better). A forum with a few hundred cases of problems is VERY good, considering millions of installations. Many times, it's some third party this or that causing a conflict, and there is just no way to ever anticipate everything. It's very helpful having the support forums there, to vet out and help us fix those special issues when they arise. I know they've quickly gotten me out of a jamb on occasion.

  40. Rob Crawford


    Here we go again

    Mac fanboi attacks other people by making sweeping statements, about both windows and pc manufacturers and resents being called immature.

    Windows fanbois are too wrapped up in their own love afair to consider simply ignoring him

    What I want to know is why the Linux generation are being left out of this

    As for a real computer one would have to search a lot of data centres before finding an Apple product, wher as Dell & HP are quite well represented.

    As Apple machines are generic Intel motherboards I can only assume that you are really referring to the OS (at which point I suggest that we all have better things to do with out time than listen to another bit fanboi waffle)

  41. Aaron

    Bonjour is a great piece of software based on very old (and rock solid) Apple business technology. What it essentially does, is make devices automatically discoverable with zero configuration.

    Why would a windows user want it? Well, most device manufacturers now support it, which means windows with Bonjour can discover printing services (as an example) without the typical headaches. Bonjour also allows for such things as wireless printing and device services sharing. Bonjour also eases the headaches of needing driver support on windows, giving a more mac like experience of, "plug in, and it just works".

    Security: everything requires a password. Nothing is advertised globally, unless you have a Bonjour enabled router that supports it (which then should use IPv6 secure tunneling). The patch took care of "spoofing" that might occur. Of course, a successful spoof would have to be carried out on the local network, which would mean you'd already been infiltrated in other, much more serious ways.... and, of course, you would have to be persuaded to enter your password.


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