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Apple To Ship Mac OS X Snow Leopard On August 28 647

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the it's-about-time dept.
okapi writes "Apple announced that Mac OS X v10.6 Snow Leopard will go on sale Friday, August 28 at Apple's retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers, and that Apple's online store is now accepting pre-orders."
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Apple To Ship Mac OS X Snow Leopard On August 28

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  • Re:free upgrades? (Score:2, Informative)

    by abigor (540274) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:07PM (#29176357)

    No, point updates are free. New OS versions cost money. I guess you are new to computers.

  • Re:free upgrades? (Score:5, Informative)

    by wandazulu (265281) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:07PM (#29176361)

    All updates within a particular version are free (10.5.1, 10.5.2, 10.5.3, etc.), but jumping to a major version (10.4 -> 10.5) cost something. This particular upgrade is a little different insofar as they've tweaked the behind-the-scenes stuff more than anything else, which some folks might consider nothing more than a service pack, but because of that it's only $29 instead of the usual $129.

    HTH

  • Re:new mac user here (Score:2, Informative)

    by sl0ppy (454532) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:08PM (#29176381)

    always back up. use time machine.

    try an in-place update. the installer should inform you if it is able to do an in-place update (it should be able to).

    if that fails, a clean install should be just fine, with your time machine backup used for applications, user files, and settings.

  • Re:new mac user here (Score:3, Informative)

    by Selfbain (624722) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:09PM (#29176397)
    Yes. Historically, there have been issues with each major upgrade of Mac OS X. I had kernel panics on a regular basis when I upgraded to 10.5 but now it seems fairly solid. I'm hoping that since the focus for 10.6 was speed and stability that it won't have these issues but I'm not holding my breath.
  • by yossie (93792) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:14PM (#29176479)

    Oh, these common ones are still available. and wikipedia has a list that is 10x longer of possibilities.. Don't think they will run out soon.
    lion
    cougar
    bobcat
    ocelot
    serval
    puma
    lynx

  • Re:free upgrades? (Score:5, Informative)

    by nine-times (778537) <nine.times@gmail.com> on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:14PM (#29176485) Homepage

    OSX upgrades are as free as Windows upgrades are-- which is to say minor updates and bug-fixes are free, but major updates cost you.

    Lots of Windows fanatics like to point to the numbering scheme and claim that Apple makes you pay for "service packs", so they'll note that 10.4 to 10.5 is a paid upgrade, even though the version number stays the same. However, in OSX, it's the third version number that's similar to a service pack, i.e. 10.4.1 could be called Mac OSX v4, service pack 1.

    And that's not necessarily too different from Windows versioning. Windows 2000 was Windows 5.0, and Windows XP was version 5.1. Windows XP service pack 3, under Apple's versioning number scheme, could be called 5.1.3. Or really, since Apple isn't incrementing the "10" part of their versioning number, it could be 10.5.1.3.

    Ultimately I'm just saying that whole side of the argument-- that is, the version numbering-- is a little arbitrary and stupid. The point is that Apple releases small improvements and bug fixes all the time, and those are free. Every two years or so, they release a new version with new features and major improvements, and those can cost as much as $130. However, in the case of Snow Leopard, most of the improvements are under the hood, so the upgrade price is only $30.

  • by nOw2 (1531357) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:15PM (#29176495)
    I've never had a problem with an upgrade on the Mac; I think I've covered each point upgrade from 10.4.1 to 10.5.8. So I've preordered and will install when it gets here. The only Apple upgrade that's given me problems is iPhone 3.0; wireless strength gradually drops from full to nothing over 10 minutes or so. With 2.x it's fine.
  • by juuri (7678) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:18PM (#29176527) Homepage

    The SL upgrade is much more like going from Win 98 to Win 98 SE if it must be put in those terms.

    Almost all of the upgrades are things under the hood that most users will notice little of, except the general speed up (which is quite significant in many parts), dock improvements, better Exchange support and improved dock functionality. This is a good update for tons of reasons most people shouldn't even really care about, so the pricing is quite justified.

  • Re:kanji input (Score:5, Informative)

    by broken_chaos (1188549) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:22PM (#29176597)

    There's a large number of under-the-hood rewrites and redesigns. The Finder is finally rewritten (so it's not using 10+ year old technologies), the major parts of the OS (kernel, most built-in apps) are 64-bit, and there's several other new things - like the new QuickTime (which serves, however terrible the app on other platforms is, as a very nice media playback framework on OS X).

  • by hammarlund (568027) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:22PM (#29176601)
    Word from Apple is that "Users will notice refinements including a more responsive Finder; Mail that loads messages up to twice as fast; Time Machine with an up to 80 percent faster initial backup; a Dock with Expose integration; QuickTime X with a redesigned player that allows users to easily view, record, trim and share video; and a 64-bit version of Safari 4 that is up to 50 percent faster and resistant to crashes caused by plug-ins. Snow Leopard is half the size of the previous version and frees up to 7GB of drive space once installed." It sounds like a deal to me for $29, especially reclaiming 7G of hard drive space.
  • Re:new mac user here (Score:3, Informative)

    by Stupendoussteve (891822) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:24PM (#29176619)

    What dumb Microsoft idea did they "steal"? Programs use configuration files, not a registry, this is better and way easier to manage. They are almost always stored in ~/Library/Preferences.

    To restore an application you would restore it to /Applications. To restore any personal configuration would you have to restore the files in ~/Library.

    Of course, if you back up and then do an in-place update, there should be little reason to restore anything. They have continually gotten better with their upgrade system. There is very little cruft as the old system is moved to a different directory and kept separate from the new one. Applications and configuration is already kept separate from the operating system itself.

  • by v1 (525388) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:28PM (#29176675) Homepage Journal

    also 4) for $170 you can get the 10.6 box set that includes ilife and iwork. that is the only option apple will offer you if you get stuck with a 10.4 intel after the 28th.

  • by Zan Lynx (87672) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:30PM (#29176703) Homepage

    The ideal IPv6 setup does not even use fixed DNS and NTP, etc. The system should be using stateless autoconf and multicast services for that.

  • Re:free upgrades? (Score:3, Informative)

    by schwanerhill (135840) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:31PM (#29176713)

    If you buy a MacBook after June 8, 2009 (i.e. any time now) that doesn't yet have Snow Leopard (10.6) pre-installed, the update will cost $9.99. Apple calls it "free" with a $9.99 shipping and handling fee. (See the Macworld story [macworld.com].)

  • Re:free upgrades? (Score:3, Informative)

    by k_187 (61692) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:31PM (#29176717) Journal
    No, the retail price of Snow Leopard is $169. You cannot buy Snow Leopard without buying the "Mac Box" which includes Snow Leopard, iLife '09 and iWork '09. Thus, if you're upgrading from Tiger, you either need to buy Leopard now and the upgrade or pay extra.
  • Boxed Set (Score:5, Informative)

    by ThrowAwaySociety (1351793) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:32PM (#29176741)

    3) VERY IMPORTANT - Apple will stop selling 10.5 the day they release 10.6. So if you have a macbook or intel imac with 10.4(.11) on it and don't get it updated to 10.5 before the 28th you cannot install Snow Leopard. The AASPs are going to go mad as of today trying to order as many 10.5 retail packs as they can get their hands on. If you will be needing one, you'd better get it NOW.

    Apple sells a "boxed set" that upgrades Tiger to Snow Leopard, with no intermediate steps.

    Yes, the Boxed Set is $169, which is more than Leopard alone was($129) but it does inlcude iLife and iWork as a bonus. (Yes, this is just a ploy to get more copies of iLife and iWork out there.)

  • Re:kanji input (Score:2, Informative)

    by mkaushik (1431203) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:32PM (#29176753)

    Isn't this the OS X version which has OpenCL integrated into it? If yes, is that not considered a big enough improvement?

  • by Darkness404 (1287218) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:41PM (#29176873)
    There are many reasons to upgrade to Snow Leopard, for example a major one for some people will be Exchange support, and another one will be a performance tweak. For example, even though very little is different from Ubuntu 8.10 to 9.04, 9.04 sped up the boot process a lot and as such starts about 45 seconds faster for me on a normal HDD. Snow Leopard is expected to clean up the code and make it be in general faster.

    However the main reason will be the new APIs that will eventually require everyone to upgrade to Snow Leopard, but even before the new APIs get used much, its still a worthwhile upgrade.
  • by MBGMorden (803437) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:41PM (#29176885)

    You must be confusing Win2k with WinME. Going from 98 to 2k was an earth-shaking whose-yer-daddy OMGWTFPWN upgrade.

  • by EvilIdler (21087) on Monday August 24, 2009 @03:52PM (#29177025)

    1+3: Lies.

    There is a full price edition - Mac Box Set. It contains the OS, iWork and iLife. That one is targetted at 10.4 users, according to the info page.
    Leopard users already have iWork and iLife, and at least iLife is available as a very cheap upgrade for those who have '08.

    What, you don't like paying more than an upgrade price to get the latest OS? Fuck you for not buying a newer Mac :)
    (The box set is priced about the same as MS Office home editions in my Apple online store)

  • Re:new mac user here (Score:5, Informative)

    by Yaztromo (655250) <yaztromo AT mac DOT com> on Monday August 24, 2009 @04:01PM (#29177141) Homepage Journal

    Picked up a mini first of the year. This will be my very first upgrade.

    As I understand it, the version numbers here are pretty much on par with a Microsoft OS version number so 10.5 to 10.6 will be like going from 98 to Win2k and should be handled the same way, upgrading will make for an unstable system so I should backup everything and do a fresh install. Is this conventional wisdom still correct?

    You shouldn't have to backup your Mac just for Snow Leopard; ideally you've been keeping backups all along. Leopard made keeping good backups so brain-dead easy that all you have to do is get yourself an external USB/Firewire drive and plug it in, and let Time Machine take care of the rest. You don't even have to start the process in any way -- plug the drive in occasionally and let it do its thing in the background.

    However, presuming for a moment you haven't being doing regular backups: yes. Backup everything first.

    That having been said, with OS X I've never had to do a full wipe and reinstall. OS X has this very, very nice "Archive and Install" option that will move all of your existing system files into a "Previous System" folder, and then do a clean system install (optionally preserving all of your users and network settings, which I suggest). This does require a lot of free disk space, but it's safe and effective, and has always given me a very nice stable install of each new OS X release since Panther (10.3).

    Yaz.

  • by leamanc (961376) on Monday August 24, 2009 @04:04PM (#29177183) Homepage Journal

    As someone who has been testing Snow Leopard in many different scenarios for the past four months, I can say this is one update that will likely give you no problems if you install over the top of your existing 10.5.x installation.

    But, for maximum speed and efficiency, I would back up your user data and apps, and do a clean install. Snow Leopard is very lean and mean, and I noticed considerably more Snappiness on machines where I clean-installed and manually migrated my data.

  • Re:free upgrades? (Score:4, Informative)

    by schwanerhill (135840) on Monday August 24, 2009 @04:10PM (#29177279)

    We need some fucking laws. In other countries, you can't commercially use the word "free" to refer to any transaction which money changes hands for any reason whatsoever. Let's enact those here too.

    I am sick and tired of having to hand over money for "free" merchandise. Why not call an air ticket "free" with a seating fee, a booking fee, a fuel fee, an oxygen fee, a plane maintenance fee, and a landing fee tacked on?

    "Free" should mean precisely one fucking thing when you come across it in public: free .

    I was deliberately not passing judgement.

    However, reading what Apple actually says, I slightly misrepresented them. What they say is "If you've purchased a qualifying computer or Xserve on or after June 8, 2009 that does not include Mac OS X Snow Leopard, you can upgrade to Mac OS X Snow Leopard for $9.95.*", with the asterisk noting that that covers shipping and handling. I mistakenly used the word "free", but Apple never does.

    Apple's upgrade page [apple.com].

  • Re:free upgrades? (Score:3, Informative)

    by nine-times (778537) <nine.times@gmail.com> on Monday August 24, 2009 @04:16PM (#29177355) Homepage

    And XP bugfixes don't ever require new hardware unlike Mac OS X

    There are certainly bugfixes between XP and Vista that you can't get without upgrading to Vista, and Vista requires new hardware.

    I still think that 10.2 should have been free, because 10.1.8 is so buggy and it will newer be fixed.

    I thought 10.2 was free, or maybe was as cheap as $20 (incl. shipping and handling) or something. I remember one of the OSX versions being cheap or free, and I'm pretty sure it was 10.2.

    I wish they would split the os from their applications, so the os bugfixes/upgrades were free, but they could charge you if you really wanted the i* software.

    They do split their OS from the i* software. The only one that comes with OSX is iTunes, which is free anyway.

  • by BitZtream (692029) on Monday August 24, 2009 @04:21PM (#29177413)

    It is an upgrade, true, but ALL Apple OS sales are upgrades, they don't just sell a 'full install' because there has never been mac that went out the door without an OS on it.

    Upgrading from 10.4 to 10.6 will not be a problem as long as you are an intel mac, 10.5 isn't required to be installed. In fact, upgrading from no OS will work as well, they 'upgrade' disks are fully bootable and will install on a blank harddrive.

    Not sure where you get your ideas from but it would appear that you haven't been around for the last 5 OS upgrades with OSX or the previous 9 with System1-9, nothing new here, move along.

  • is this youtube now? (Score:5, Informative)

    by linhares (1241614) on Monday August 24, 2009 @04:27PM (#29177491)
    I have read this entire discussion and to my dismay it sound much more in line with youtube comments than /., and no. I am not new here. This update is interesting because of Grand Central Dispatch, some minor new 64-bit apps, and specially, OpenCL.

    OpenCL is going to change scientific computing, for good. NVIDIA's CUDA is great and all, but you get bogged to one vendor's platform. With OpenCL you can define compute kernels that will be run in the GPU, if the thing supports it. For neural networks, genetic algorithms, matrix stuff, fast fourier transform, etc, expect HUGE performance gains. Especially whenever there's an NVIDIA TESLA with 192 cores behind it you might find gains of 100x speed. I'll probably be modded as funny or some shit, but imho OpenCL is a game-changer for the scientific community.

    Finally, ONE DAY, there will be a killer app for the general public using the power of the GPU. Then I hope everybody will understand.

    In the meantime, I, and my students, will be studying and working with it.

  • by chris462 (656034) on Monday August 24, 2009 @04:28PM (#29177515) Homepage

    http://www.apple.com/macosx/specs.html [apple.com]

    Upgrading from Mac OS X v10.4 Tiger.

    If your Intel-based Mac is running Mac OS X v10.4 Tiger, purchase the Mac Box Set, which is a single, affordable package that includes Mac OS X v10.6 Snow Leopard; iLife '09, with the latest versions of iPhoto, iMovie, GarageBand, iWeb, and iDVD; and iWork '09, Apple's productivity suite for home and office including Pages, Numbers, and Keynote.

  • by leamanc (961376) on Monday August 24, 2009 @04:30PM (#29177539) Homepage Journal

    Yes, because many (all?) of the Apple-supplied apps have been slimmed down from Universal Binaries to Intel-only executables. Also, there has been considerable "tightening up" of the Apple-supplied apps in that they use Frameworks (what's known as dynamic libraries or shared libraries on other OS's) as much as possible, instead of having nearly all code stuffed in their .app bundle.

    But, I've noticed that to get maximum space efficiency, you need to do a clean install. For example, Rosetta (the PowerPC translator) is optional at install, but it is not checked by default on a clean install. If you upgrade, Rosetta is already there, and it will stay there.

    So long story short, you should see space improvements either way, but I still find it worth it to back up and do a clean install.

  • Re:free upgrades? (Score:2, Informative)

    by geekboybt (866398) on Monday August 24, 2009 @04:33PM (#29177585)
    I'd hope not, considering Apple actually licensed that from Microsoft, whereas Palm reverse engineered their way in.
  • Re:Windows 7 (Score:5, Informative)

    by morgan_greywolf (835522) on Monday August 24, 2009 @04:50PM (#29177827) Homepage Journal

    Without a doubt what you say is true.

    However, the parent is right in that increasingly, over time, Windows systems typically slow down. even if you don't add much in the way of applications or other software. Without a doubt, part of this phenomenon is related to increasing data bloat, especially in the registry. (After all, this is where things like the a MRU lists and settings are stored.)

    But the difference between Mac OS X, Linux, etc. over Windows is that the former lack the registry altogether, instead preferring to store this data in individual files rather than one huge database.

    Like it or not, this slowdown is a limitation of the system as designed.

  • by SuperKendall (25149) on Monday August 24, 2009 @05:03PM (#29178007)

    You will not get 64 bit kernel, since by default 32 bit kernel is installed on all supported hardware except XServe.

    (a) we don't know if this is true of the final release.

    (b) it hardly matters unless you planned to add more than 32GB of RAM to your system. All user apps can still run in 64-bit mode just fine.

    And the applications that could really benefit from 64 bit like Photoshop are not available anyway.

    Well sure, the system is not out yet!

    But we'll see those apps before too long, especially a lot of apps that add GrandCentral and OpenCL support. The boost for those apps is a good reason to upgrade.

    Also there are simply a ton of little feature improvements across the whole system, making it more than worth a paltry $29 for the upgrade price until the supply of 64 bit and accelerated apps does arrive. There's not reason why plugin vendors for instance cannot quickly incorporate updates.

  • by leamanc (961376) on Monday August 24, 2009 @05:29PM (#29178319) Homepage Journal

    OS X apps have had 32-bit and 64-bit executables in their bundles for quite some time now. At least since 10.4, if not some point in 10.3 (it was definitely soon after the arrival of the first G5), so this is a non-issue.

    I know there are true shared libraries (Unix-style) and OS X Frameworks--two separate entities--but I was dumbing it down for those who don't want to get all pedantic about it.

    And, lastly, I know that OS X apps have always utilized Frameworks. But the point is, in Snow Leopard, Apple is utilizing Frameworks more than ever. I mean, how else can Mail.app shrink for 192 MB to 16 MB? It's not just the PPC code being excised.

    I appreciate your clarifying things, but it is obscuring my main point--apps in Snow Leopard, and the OS itself, are VERY lean compared to any previous version of OS X, and there is a noticeable speed boost.

  • by Atti K. (1169503) on Monday August 24, 2009 @05:40PM (#29178457)
    You can do the install [ubuntu.com] yourself. I haven't tried 9.04 PPC, but 8.10 ran pretty fine (with the obvious limitations of the PPC platform) on my iBook G4. If configured properly, it even feels snappier than OS X.
  • Re:free upgrades? (Score:3, Informative)

    by mrdoogee (1179081) on Monday August 24, 2009 @05:40PM (#29178459)
    Really, using 10.5.8 as an example, I'd describe it as follows:

    10 - OS Branding, like "Windows" or "Ubuntu"

    .5 - Major Version like "XP" or "9.xx"

    .8 - Minor Version like "SP2" or "X.04"
  • by Guy Harris (3803) <guy@alum.mit.edu> on Monday August 24, 2009 @06:35PM (#29179179)

    OS X apps have had 32-bit and 64-bit executables in their bundles for quite some time now. At least since 10.4, if not some point in 10.3 (it was definitely soon after the arrival of the first G5),

    Nope - the output of "file" on the Mail executable on 10.5.8 is:

    $ file /Applications/Mail.app/Contents/MacOS/Mail
    /Applications/Mail.app/Contents/MacOS/Mail: Mach-O universal binary with 2 architectures
    /Applications/Mail.app/Contents/MacOS/Mail (for architecture i386): Mach-O executable i386
    /Applications/Mail.app/Contents/MacOS/Mail (for architecture ppc7400): Mach-O executable ppc

    No 64-bit code there. Perhaps you're thinking of the libraries, some of which had 32-bit and 64-bit slices in 10.4, and most if not all of which had those slices in 10.5. They would still need their 32-bit PPC slices, even on Snow Leopard, for the benefit of PPC binaries running under Rosetta, although they could lose their 64-bit PPC slice, as Rosetta doesn't support 64-bit PPC binaries.

    And, lastly, I know that OS X apps have always utilized Frameworks. But the point is, in Snow Leopard, Apple is utilizing Frameworks more than ever. I mean, how else can Mail.app shrink for 192 MB to 16 MB? It's not just the PPC code being excised.

    Where do you get the size figures from? ls -l? size? Activity Monitor? Some other tool? I'm not seeing them.

    The only valid way to determine whether, for example, Mail is using more libraries and frameworks is to run otool -L on the binaries and seeing whether it reports the Snow Leopard binary as being linked with more libraries and frameworks. That wouldn't tell you whether a given bit of functionality was moved from Mail to a framework, for use in other applications, but "Mail.app shrunk" won't tell you that, either.

    I appreciate your clarifying things, but it is obscuring my main point--apps in Snow Leopard, and the OS itself, are VERY lean compared to any previous version of OS X, and there is a noticeable speed boost.

    That wasn't your main point, it was the main point in the posting to which you were responding [slashdot.org]; the points in your article were claims as to the reason why that was the case:

    1. "many (all?) of the Apple-supplied apps have been slimmed down from Universal Binaries to Intel-only executables" - as I noted, that can't be it, as they were slimmed down and then fattened up;
    2. "there has been considerable "tightening up" of the Apple-supplied apps in that they use Frameworks (what's known as dynamic libraries or shared libraries on other OS's) as much as possible, instead of having nearly all code stuffed in their .app bundle" - speculative at best.
  • by node 3 (115640) on Monday August 24, 2009 @06:59PM (#29179423)

    Leopard messed up audio programs of all kinds until Apple finally got around to addressing the issues with the .3 update. The recent .8 update screwed up some people's wireless connectivity. It hasn't been that long since some early adopters lost entire volumes of data when they upgraded.

    Snow Leopard is supposed to be fixes, tweaks, and improvements, so maybe this one is a better bet, but still, I can't see myself pre-ordering.

    If you have Time Machine running, and your current Leopard install DVD, you have nothing to worry about. The problems you listed affected less than 0.1% of the Mac population. Even if something horrible happens and you lose your whole drive, you can just boot your old disc, choose to restore from Time Machine.

    If you *don't* have Time Machine running, you really should. The cost of an external drive is minute compared to the benefit of never[*] having to worry about losing all your data.

    [*] Technically, you *can* still lose all your data (fire, theft, extremely bad timing of both drives failing at once, etc., but Time Machine takes the potential for disaster out of the realm of reasonably worrisome down to "well, it *could* happen, but it's nothing to freak out over". And if you're still so paranoid, you can use two drives and store one offsite or whatever torment-that's-worse-than-the-risk-of-losing-everything-in-the-first-place you feel compelled to put yourself through.

  • by smash (1351) on Monday August 24, 2009 @10:04PM (#29181087) Homepage Journal
    Despite the bullshit, i've been a happy vista user since 2007. I actually stopped bothering to dual boot linux on this box (for the first time since 1996).

    If Vista is "not viable", fucked if i know where that puts linux... Don't be a fucking tight-arse with RAM, and vista is fine. Much better than XP, imho - if i had to go back, it would be to Windows 2000, thankyouverymuch.

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