Tag Archives: Macintosh

Steve Jobs

Most of what needs to be said about Steve has already been said by others, and better than I could have done, so I won’t even attempt to add to it.

However, Steve Jobs has been partly responsible for my ability to make a living for the past 30 or so years. That must be acknowledged, and I am grateful for it.

Thanks you, Steve, and Godspeed.

First Mac-powered botnet identified

The first botnet based on Macintosh computers is here, according to security researchers at Symantec and reported in Ars Technica. A botnet is a collection of software robots (so-called “bots”) which can act automatically and autonomously after being infected with (usually) malevolent software. Botnets consist of a number of such compromised computers known as “zombies,” and these can be directed by the originator of the bot software (the so-called “bot herder”) to perform various nefarious tasks, such as conducting organized DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attacks on servers, or sending spam emails. Botnets are commonly comprised of Windows computers, although this is the first known botnet comprised of Macs.Ars_technica_logo

Mac users who downloaded pirated copies of Adobe’s Creative Suite CS4 or iWork 2009 may have got more than they bargained for, as some of these copies contained trojan horse software OSX.Trojan.iServices.A and OSX.Trojan.iServices.B. When the user unpacks the pirated software, the trojan is installed and becomes active, turning the Mac into a “zombie.” Since the trojan software was first discovered in January 2009, most anti-virus software has by now been updated to remove the trojan and its remnants. Still, the botnet was recently implicated in DDoS attacks on several servers.

This incident provides yet another reason to avoid installing pirated software on your computer. The success of this Mac-based botnet almost guarantees that more pirated software will be released that is infected, so it’s best to stay away… stay far, far away.

Mac OS X 10.5.3 released [updated]

Yesterday Apple released Mac OS X 10.5.3, the latest revision of their newest “Leopard” operating system. This release contains what appears to be a boatload of security fixes, as well as a tidy list of improvements to various Apple applications.

I do have one Mac running Leopard for evaluation purposes, but the “money” machines are still on 10.4.11, at least until Digidesign qualifies Pro Tools LE and M-Powered for Leopard. Pro Tools HD is currently qualified on OS X 10.5.1, but not 10.5.2; LE and M-Powered are not yet qualified, period.

[Update 05/30/08] So-called pre-release versions of all three, ready for Leopard 10.5.3, are now available from Digidesign’s website. See this. Continue reading Mac OS X 10.5.3 released [updated]

Bellyin’ up to the Genius Bar

The power adapter for my MacBook Pro shorted out at the MagSafe connector yesterday. It was not a spectacular failure, but it did involve a wisp or two of smoke and a blackened hole in the insulation behind the plug. Time to get Apple to replace it, which brings us to the topic of Apple’s Genius Bar:

The Genius Bar

If you’ve never been to an Apple Store, the Genius Bar is where you take your Mac or iPod when it is misbehaving. The friendly (and uniformly young/hip/gen-Y) technicians will examine your machine, answer your questions, and run some diagnostic software to see what’s troubling it. It’s a busy place, and you have to make an appointment and get in line to see an Apple Genius. You can make an appointment via Apple’s website before you leave for the Store, or you can do it in the Store on one of the (surprise) Macs on the retail floor. Your name and place in the waiting list is then displayed prominently on one of several large plasma displays in the Genius Bar area.

This should clue you that This Is Going To Take A While.

Continue reading Bellyin’ up to the Genius Bar