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News Archive for Monday Oct. 19, 2009     Goto Current News Page

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Sonnet (re)posts E4P SATA card v2.1.9 drivers for users that had problems w/2.2.0
FYI for readers that had problems with last week's 2.2.0 driver update:

"FYI - Sonnet acknowledged that a small number of users have had problems with the 2.2.0 drivers, so they have (re)posted the 2.1.9 drivers on their site --- anybody having problems can easily step back until they release a fix for the 2.2.0 version.
I had already reinstalled the 2.1.8 drivers, and haven't had any problems since.
Regards, Hugh"

The linked page includes info on removing the v2.2.0 driver and receipt before installing v2.1.9. Hugh had reported problems w/2.2.0 drivers in last Wednesday's news page, although another user (w/different ext drive enclosure) didn't. But I had another mail today from a reader w/2.2.0 driver problems - noting Finder crashing in Snow Leopard with his E4P/Sonnet Fusion 500p. (Another E4P user had also reported 2.2.0 driver problems with his Sonnet 400 and 500 enclosures.)

(FYI: Other news listing below updated. Apple reports another record quarter despite the bad economy.)

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More reader Feedback/Tips on Performance Update 1.0
(from mails over the weekend and today - later recd first)

"On my now just over a month old (mid-2009) 17in MacBook Pro running Snow Leopard, I saw long interface freezes (several seconds long) in which everything but the mouse would freeze. Apps would spin beachballs occasionally and eventually the mouse would freeze, then seemingly every frustration induced click or mouse movement would happen at once. (So the OS wasn't completely frozen, just the interface.) You could tell how long by looking at the frozen menubar clock.
Note that, in general, I did *not* see the spinning beachball system-wide, though it might have appeared in particular apps as I tried to use them.

Since I installed Performance Update 1.0 (1.0? Do they plan to have a series of these things) the problem seems to be completely gone.

"My daughter's 13" MacBook Pro (bought June 2009) was plagued by spinning beach balls since day 1. (Now running 10.6.1.) The original drive was a 160GB Hitachi 5K500 (HTS545016B9SA02). I thought maybe there was a drive problem so I swapped in a Toshiba MK2553GSX which seemed to help a bit, but didn't eradicate these 20-30 second lockups with the spinning beach ball.
However, we haven't had an occurrence since applying the Performance update 1.0.
Regards, Alan"

"I installed Performance Update 1.0 for 10.6.1 on my one-month old bog-standard Mac Mini (120gig HD, 1 gig RAM). Prior to updating, I'd experienced no problems whatsoever with 10.6.1. However, when I ran 'software update' two days ago the Performance Update showed up, and I figured why not install it?
Unfortunately, after installing the performance update, sleep no longer functioned properly when I manually selected it from the Apple menu. The mini went to sleep, but then spontaneously woke up after 20 seconds or so. I then tried installing the performance update as a stand-alone download, as you suggested. (I always use D/L updaters - and a previous reader noted reinstalling from D/L helped after seeing problems with SU install.-Mike)
It didn't help; the only thing that changed is that after manually selecting sleep the computer will remain asleep for a minute or so before spontaneously waking up. (Note that sleep seems to work fine if the computer puts itself to sleep automatically after sensing no activity for the time period specified in Energy Saver preferences.)
(he later wrote)
I called Apple tech support after sending you my email (I still have free phone support on my new Mini). They had me reset the PMU (unplug the computer from everything for 30 seconds) and then had me reset the PRAM (restart while holding down Command+Option+P+R), One or both of these actions seems to have solved the problem.
I tried to find out from the tech guy whether my sleep problems were a known issue with the Performance Update, (Based on my and other readers, it's not.-Mike) and couldn't really get an answer; in fact, the tech guy seemed a bit surprised to hear there had been a Performance Update and asked me to repeat the name of it several times!
Thanks again for your help!

I sent him a FYI based on a console log he sent that showed Logitech software installed (LCC startup/login item related) that if he sees any future problems (after an OS update or not), I'd remove that software (uninstaller IIRC located in Utilities folder) and/or check for update. Over the years I've seen many cases where 3rd party startup/login items (or connected devices) caused sleep/wake problems.
I know in the past many have had bad experiences with Mac LCC software, although they updated it again a week or so ago and not sure how the latest update fares. Personally I've avoid using their Mac software although I do use their mice (for many years) and am using their G15 (LCD) Keyboard with a Mac Pro, but only using the software for it in Bootcamp/Vista. (Used for the GPU temperatures/clocks/FPS reporting on the LCD.)

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Another report from MacBook Pro user w/Crucial M225 SSD (firmware v1819)
Mail from one of the Crucial M225 owners that used the FreeDOS ISO to update to v1819 firmware over the weekend:

"PRELIMINARY findings: (updated)
One of the biggest issues I had with the Crucial SSD 256GB (firmware 1571 in 17in MacBook Pro, running 10.6.1) is with my program by called PHOTOMECHANIC. (I asked he'd applied "Performance Update 1.0" released last week and he said Yes.-Mike) Things would start out fine, than the program would start stuttering, get very sluggish, have a noticeable delay, and generally act very slow.
Now, since the upgrade to 1819 firmware, I see the program not stuttering at all, and it seems to be running as if I had a mechanical hard drive. I will see how the next few days go with this stuttering problem and if it comes back, I will let you know. But for now, I'm hopeful.
(Around noon today he sent an update)
ALTHOUGH... this morning, I see that some of the stuttering came back, so I fear I spoke to soon... Disappointing, but the next several days should reveal more.

I've already posted my comments on a M225 w/1819 (in Early 2009 MBP 17in) based on what I've seen so far since Friday night's update (see below and Friday's post), but welcome other feedback from readers on any pros or cons they see with the new firmware. (Please include info on Mac model/OS used, etc.)

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Unibody MacBook Pro user report on SuperTalent SSD w/1819 firmware (problems seen)
Follow-up from a SuperTalent (barefoot based) SSD owner that sent a FYI on their 1819 and 1571 backflash (for those that updated to 1711 previously) in Friday's news:

"I downgraded my Super Talent 256GB drive to v1571, then upgraded to v1819 firmware successfully using a PC. Cloned the drive and installed it in my late 2008 unibody MacBook Pro (MacBookPro5,1 with 10.6.1 + drive hesitation update ("Performance Update 1.0" from apple), 6GB memory) and it started having problems within an hour of rebooting.
The Finder would hang or quit, Time Machine could not complete a backup (and would crash or lock up), Drag Thing (which I use as a launcher) gave weird write failure errors. Each time I would reboot and the computer would be OK for 20-30 minutes and then start to have problems.
Finally it hung during reboot and wouldn't go back to the desktop. I pulled the drive and reinstalled the conventional disk. Too bad, I had high updates for a SSD in my MacBook Pro. I may try the disk in my 2009 Mac Pro and hope for better luck.

I asked he report back after checking the drive in the Mac Pro (i.e. results of verify disk, etc) and wonder if the backflash to 1571 can be done from v1819 firmware (not just 1711).
As I mentioned Friday night, I updated a 256GB Crucial M225 SSD (literally a clone of the ST model reportedly) to v1819 (after backflashing to 1571) and so far it's been OK in an Early 2009 17in MacBook Pro running 10.6.1 (also w/Performance update 1.0).
I left the M225 (1819 firmware) SSD in sleep mode overnight Sunday - woke it up this morning (around 10:30AM) and after getting the above mail and ran a Disk Utility "Verify Disk" on the SSD drive (which I'd done after the 1819 update/10.6.1 recloning OK). The first Verify run didn't seem to complete (last message shown was "checking volume bitmap" - not hung but didn't continue/complete). Pressing "verify" again did complete OK. I then shut it down and restarted. Seems ok so far although I'd never seen that happen before (verify not complete).

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Apple Support/How-To/Troubleshooting Doc Updates

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Other News/Reviews/Articles, Software/App updates
(later added first)

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Recent Articles and Reviews
Listing/links to recent articles and reviews you may have missed.
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