We had a few readers email in yesterday after it was announced that OS X Mavericks would be free, a first for a major desktop operating system release. It seems a few of you are curious about how Apple got here, and what the history is as it relates to the pricing of OS X. So, here's a quick history lesson.
- 10.0 Cheetah: Released March 24, 2001 for $129
- 10.1 Puma: Released September 25, 2001 for $0
- 10.2 Jaguar: Released August 23, 2002 for $129
- 10.3 Panther: Released October 24, 2003 for $129
- 10.4 Tiger: Released April 29, 2005 for $129
- 10.5 Leopard: Released October 26, 2007 for $129
- 10.6 Snow Leopard: Released August 28, 2009 for $29
- 10.7 Lion: Released July 20, 2011 for $29
- 10.8 Mountain Lion: Released July 25, 2012 for $19
- 10.9 Mavericks: Released October 22, 2013 for $0
So, as you can see, both OS X 10.1 Puma and 10.9 Mavericks were released as free updates, however, Puma was released just six months after 10.0 Cheetah, so that would have been ridiculous if Apple has chosen to charge for it. Other than that anomaly, OS X updates remained at $129 each until Snow Leopard in 2009, which sold for $29. The last $129 version of OS X was Leopard, which saw massive delays due to Apple pulling engineers from it to work on iPhone OS 1.0 (now known as iOS.) Lion was also sold for $29, and was the first version of OS X to be available as a digital download from the Mac App Store. The following year, Mountain Lion debuted at just $19--the best bargain in OS X release history until yesterday, when Mavericks launched for free. The trend has always been that OS X updates would cost the same as the previous year, or less--never more (discounting the Puma issue, which was a huge bugfix patch.) As this point, it appears that OS X has gone the way of iOS, where all updates from here on out will be available for free, on an annual basis.
iA Writer, our text editor of choice for the Mac, iPad, and iPhone, has been updated today to version 1.4 for Mac. The update brings:
- Responsive design: resize the windows to change the font size
- In-app preview panel
- Optimized for Retina displays
- Formatted QuickLook preview
- Standardized Find and Replace
- Selection-sensitive word count
Yesterday Apple released an update for the 2011 and 2012 MacBook Air to enable Power Nap, and today an update enabling the Mountain Lion feature has been released for the MacBook Pro with Retina display. Power Nap is one of the 10 essential Mountain Lion features and it allows your Mac to download Mac App Store updates, OS X updates, email, sync with iCloud, back up to Time Machine, and more all while in sleep mode.
This update fixes several sleep/wake issues to improve the stability of MacBook Pro with Retina display (Mid 2012) computers and is recommended for all users running OS X v10.7.4. It also enables Power Nap support for users running OS X v10.8 or later.
To get the update, head to the Mac App Store software update tab. Lion users will also benefit from the update as well, and can find it in Software Update.
With the rumor that Mountain Lion will launch tomorrow, a bunch of developers have been released Mountain Lion compatable software updates recently, and we can now add the excellent Carbon Copy Cloner to the list. Carbon Copy Cloner allows you to automatically make backups of your data using a simple-yet-powerful interface. CCC 3.5 requires Snow Leopard, Lion, or Mountain Lion, while 3.4.x will continue to run on Tiger and Leopard. As a nice bonus, Carbon Copy Cloner 3.5 also includes support for the Retina display. Here's the full changelog:
- This version of CCC requires Mac OS X Snow Leopard, Lion, or Mountain Lion, and is fully qualified on each of those OSes. We will continue to provide user support and bug fixes for Tiger and Leopard users on CCC 3.4.x for a while longer.
- Recovery HD support has been overhauled to better support the concept of "one Recovery HD partition per volume", rather than one per disk. If you have multiple backup volumes with different OSes (e.g. Lion and Mountain Lion), CCC can associate a Recovery HD with each one and apply the appropriate OS to each Recovery HD partition.
- We have leveraged code signing within CCC for nearly five years. For GateKeeper compliance on Mountain Lion, however, CCC is now signed with an Apple Developer Certificate.
- Most of the binaries in the CCC bundle are now 32/64-bit Intel-only binaries.
- Fixed an issue that appeared in 10.7.4, specific to Macs running Lion with a 64-bit kernel, in which the /Volumes folder on the destination volume would be locked rather than hidden. This resulted in external volumes being unmountable when booted from the backup volume.
- Performance of deleting scheduled tasks is much improved.
- CCC previously encountered some performance problems when simultaneously saving very large numbers of scheduled tasks (e.g. > 29). These problems should now be resolved. This is most applicable when updating CCC, or when CCC has been moved and all tasks must be re-saved at the same time.
- Updated graphics for High Resolution support on the new MacBook Pro (Retina).
You can get the new update now.
Read More | Carbon Copy Cloner
Apple will be reporting its third-quarter fiscal year 2012 earnings call later today, and many are speculating that part of that call will be the announcement of the OS X Mountain Lion release date. In fact, last year Lion's release date was announced during the earnings call, and it debuted the following day. Apple has promised that Mountain Lion would be released this month, and we've got a week left. If we had to bet, we'll see Apple's next major operating system launch tomorrow. Mountain Lion will be available on the Mac App Store for $19.99, and the Golden Master was released to developers recently.
TotalFinder has become essential Mac software here at Gear Live. If you're unfamiliar, TotalFinder is an add-on for the Apple OS X Finder that provides a tabbed interface. That means that you can have multiple Finder instances open in one window, and you an even have multiple tabbed windows as well. Much easier to work with the Finder when you've got TotalFinder running. Version 1.3.5 brings OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion and 10.7.5 Lion compatability, as well as Gatekeeper support. Full changelog available after the break.
Read More | TotalFinder
iA Writer, our text editor of choice for the Mac, iPad, and iPhone, has been updated today to version 1.3 for Mac, and version 1.6 for iOS. The update brings:
- Full OS X Mountain Lion support
- iCloud folder support in Mountain Lion
- iCloud folder access in Lion
- Standard window framework
- Improved Markdown and Versions support
- Optimized printing
- Speed increases
In addition, the iOS version also brings full iCloud folder support, and trash bins in iCloud and local storage. iA Writer is currently on sale for $8.99 on the Mac, and 99 cents for iPhone/iPad. We highly recommend it.
SpamSieve has been updated to version 2.9.3. You are using version 2.9.2. Would you like to download the new version? It includes the following changes:
- Added support for the forthcoming Mac OS X 10.7.5.
- Fixed a bug that could prevent SpamSieve from auto-launching on the forthcoming OS X 10.8.
- SpamSieve is now able to recover from certain unexpected system errors on OS X 10.8.
- Fixed a layout bug in the German-localized Statistics window.
- Improved the Automatically Deleting Old Spam Messages instructions.
- SpamSieve now tells the system that it can use the integrated GPU, which should reduce battery use on newer MacBook Pros.
- SpamSieve’s disk image background is now displayed at Retina quality on eligible Macs running Mac OS X 10.7 or 10.8. (On Mac OS X 10.6, due to an OS bug, it will incorrectly display at double size.)
- Fixed a regression where SpamSieve’s disk image icon didn’t display properly.
SpamSieve is our favorite spam control solution, as it's proven to be an invaluable tool for us over the years. Highly recommended.
Read More | SpamSieve
Apple is set to release it's next major operating system update, known os OS X Mountain Lion, later this month. In this edition of Ask Andru, Tracy writes in and asks if there is anything she should do to prepare her Mac computers for the Mountain Lion installation. I share some tips on what we can all do to ensure a smooth upgrade experience to Mac OS 10.8.
Question: I hear that Apple will be releasing a new version of OS X shortly. Is there anything I need to do in order to prepare for it to ensure that I can run it? Will it be expensive?
You're correct! Apple announced OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion just five months ago, and it will be available in under two weeks. Mountain Lion will sell exclusively on the Mac App Store for $19.99 (so, not expensive at all!) and will include some nice features, including AirPlay Mirroring from your Mac, tighter iCloud integration, Twitter and Facebook built-in at the system level, Reminders, Notes, Game Center, a new Messages app that will let you send and receive iMessages from the Mac, iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. In total, there are over 200 new features that Apple is introducing in Mountain Lion.
Apple just announced final details for OS X Mountain Lion during its WWDC 2012 keynote. First, the ship date. Mountain Lion will be available eclusively from the Mac App Store in July. Second, the price. Mountain Lion will be the cheapest OS X update in history, selling for just $19.99. Users running Lion or Snow Leopard will be able to upgrade to Mountain Lion using the Mac App Store starting next month.