back to article Apple punts Safari update

Apple today upgraded is Safari browser to version 4.0.2, promising improved stability of its Nitro JavaScript engine. Whether this update will solve the pesky crashing problems reported here and elsewhere remains to be seen. We've been running it for a couple of hours with no problems - but intermittent crashes have an …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    Did they fix it or just patch it?

    Did they fix the problem where the thing would consume all the CPU and thrash the disk when it has a dozen or so windows open yet? I had to roll back to 3.2.3 so I could get my work done.

  2. Jeremy 2

    Requires a restart

    I trust that is of the browser, not the entire OS?! Or have Apple gone down the IE4/5/6 road of tying the browser so closely to the OS that you can't even change the font settings without a reboot???

    Where's the Stop and then Go icon?

  3. Anonymous Coward


    I got so frustrated with the random crashes I moved to Firefox a couple of Safari versions ago. Saying that I use Firefox makes me feel like a dirty freetard, so to make myself better I've put a Safari skin on it so I'm not reminded everyday.

    Maybe when I can be bothered I'll give Safari another go.

  4. jai

    re: Dirty

    give Safari 4 a go

    i really like it (although I prefered the beta's method of having the tabs at the very top of the window).

    re: Requires a restart

    i suspect it is the OS

    the 4.0.1 required a machine reboot also. that's why i only just got around to applying it on Monday

  5. Paul Gomme

    This worked for me...

    I was having huge problems after updating to Safari 4 with it continually crashing. A look at the crash dump logs pointed to the Shockwave plugin. I updated that to the latest, and it's been fine ever since. I'm not saying that's what's causing all the problems, but worth checking.

  6. Bad Beaver
    Paris Hilton


    What crashes? Safari is more stable then ever. It also eats more CPU than ever and it keeps forgetting passwords. I'll give the update a go and if it still sucks I'm back to Camino.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns


    40.2Mb for a browser?! What Apple iTunes lockin DRM spyware bloat crap do they ship with that then to get it up to 40Mb? Are Apples too cool to have sensible sized installs and compression?

    "Oh, stuffit... the Mac faithful will download it regardless."

    Or is it that they simply couldn't click the context menu with the cyclops mouse to select "release build" instead of "debug build with full browse database"?

  8. Ivan Headache

    Must be just me

    I've read about this crashing lark since Safari 4 came out of beta but... so far it hasn't happened here.

    I'm a bit miffed about the removal of the progress bar and its stupid replacement paddle wheel but it's otherwise very solid - even with a dozen or so windows open (currently there are 13 open and CPU usage is 5% - 10% depending on which window is frontmost).

  9. Jae_Allyn

    Even crashed / hung the update!

    Actually have been a pretty happy Firefox power user (it's very well 'tweaked') but decided a while back to give Safari a try. Stuck mostly with Firefox but found Safari to be useful for certain things.

    Then, as I recall, somewhere with late Safari 3, seemed like an update made Safari start grinding my PC to a crawl, just like an earlier poster had experienced. And it was the only app. that did so. Also noticed that killing any Safari process always got the computer running fine gain. All this on a pretty sufficient, very stable and always currently patched XP Pro SP3 Athlon 64 dual-core box that's a bit over a year old.

    So I quit using Safari for a while. At least until Ver. 4 came out. "Maybe this will fix the problem," I thought. No such luck. "Great news!" I think today with news of the patch for 4.0.2 on El Reg. All will be well in Safari land again. Nope.

    Couldn't even get the software update for 4.0.2 to finish downloading, even at 3am USA CT on a 10M DSL connection that seemed to be working fine and quite 'live' on anything else I tried at the time. Worse yet, when I tried to stop the download by clicking 'cancel' on the Apple updater, it hung. That problem finally cleared up just before I headed to task manager to kill the updater.

    Maybe I'll try to update Safari to 4.0.2 later on? Probably. I'm a glutton for punishment, I guess. But does anyone know of a good reason why Safari doesn't have a 'check for updates' function of its own like most everything else does? Or why the crazy beast is a 50MB+ download? Just doesn't seem like enough of a product to require such a big chunk of install code. I'd think Apple had been taking software development lessons from M$, but I've noticed that other things they do (like QuickTime / iTunes at 85MB+) seems inordinately huge.

    Is this the kind of 'fun' I'd experience if someday I broke down and bought a Mac?

  10. William Gallafent
    Jobs Halo

    @Jeremy 2

    It's a restart of the whole computer, not just the browser. Apple wants you to drink more coffee, so kindly gives you the opportunity to go and make another cup.

  11. Rod MacLean
    Thumb Up

    Safari problems

    I have been using Safari 4 since it was released and have never had a single crash... it just works.

    And to the person who has had problems when using more than a dozen windows - try using tabs ;)

  12. ThomH

    Was crashing a lot for me...

    ... almost always while executing Javascript, though it was really only annoying when WebKit decides to crash the Xcode documentation viewer and in so doing takes all of Xcode with it.

    @Jeremy 2: it's nothing like as bad as requiring a restart for font changes, but there's clearly something suspicious at play. I guess WebKit is used throughout the OS for about a million things, but nevertheless I'm a bit uneasy by anything that requires a restart.

  13. Richard 102

    Haven't had a problem

    I've been using Safari 4 at home since it came out with nary a problem ... except when my beagle cold-nosed me and I spat coffee onto my laptop, but I don't think you can blame that crash on Safari.

    Mine's the one with the coffee stain on the front.

  14. Jae_Allyn

    If not a crash, certainly a hang.

    To Rod MacLean (and maybe Ivan Headache and Paul Gomme, too)

    Maybe not a 'crash' as in blowing itself off the screen. I've seen FF 3.0.x do that a few times. But hang? Sure, and slow the whole system down along the way. Also not window or tab related. Just put 3 pages of Sun Micro's website up on Safari in tabs. No Shockwave / Flash elements. Within a minute or so, XP Pro system (described in my earlier post; sorry I was so long) started 'stalling out' or hanging just trying to switch from one app. to another. Shut down Safari and system was fine. Open to hearing any explanation someone might have.

  15. Delboy

    Worst browser I know

    There are still too many sites that Safari won't work on or won't display properly. I'm sticking with Firefox on both my Mac & PC.

  16. ThomH


    I've yet to find a single site that Safari doesn't work on or displays incorrectly. Please give examples.

  17. Eddie 3


    Try KwikFit's online booking - the vehicle selector boxes won't update. But that's probably because the entire site is shite - always crashes at payment time in any browser (maybe not IE, but I don't use that turd) so you have to call the bloody call centre.

    (Disclaimer: Only using KwikFit because A: It's near, B: Sent 20% discount voucher, C: Wife's car.)

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