Archive for the 'Services' Category

macOS High Sierra

Monday, September 25th, 2017

The silly name aside (sigh), it is really ridiculous that in 2017 Apple does still not allow us to update the last Beta build to the GM (Golden Master) via a delta update, and instead forces us to download and re-install the whole OS from scratch, again.

Not only for developers this really is a total waste of time (and bandwidth). There are already hundred small design details all over macOS and iOS that are not 100%ly right in the Apple eco-system anymore, this additional annoyances really add up to a way too long list in the meantime!

Testing the Beta on my 15″ Retina MacBook Pro (Late 2013) the graphic performance (e.g. editing videos, but also just browsing the web) was quite sluggish, stability awful, and there was even screen flicker and corruption during booting (hello? - where has atomic mode setting gone? ;-)

The machine run also significantly hotter and battery life was obviously much worse. If Apple did not hot-fix this in the last weeks before the GM release this might very well be the worst macOS release I witnessed to date :-/ #peakbugs

Update: after fresh installation (sigh), even the boot graphic glitches prevail:

A post shared by RenéRebe™ (@renerebe) on

Update: even the Arstechnica mentions “bugs” 9 times, and “issues” 10 times, too. Nobody would have let Microsoft get away with this, and we would have called it the worst Windows Vista release ever, … Just saying, …

Update2: iMovie still has the same problem as the latest beta installation before the GM. On my above mentioned 15″ rMBP with 4k display connected and internal display closed iMovie even crashes straight away on start-up:

Exception Type: EXC_CRASH (SIGABRT)
Exception Codes: 0×0000000000000000, 0×0000000000000000
Exception Note: EXC_CORPSE_NOTIFY

Application Specific Information:
-[QCCGLRootContext minimalSharedContextForCurrentThread]: Inconsistent state
abort() called

Surprisingly iMovie starts when I open the internal display in addition to the external 4k display. What?

Sick & sad. Really sad.

Update 5/11/’17 this is still not fixed in the macOS 10.3.1 and iMovie 10.1.8 and not 4k related, also happens with an vintage 20″ Apple Cinema Display, :-/ ..! #peakbugs

The different kinds of Wake-on-Lan

Sunday, September 24th, 2017

Some time ago I posted about wake on lan being hidden by a cryptic energy BIOS option. This week I was setting up a new test system and wondered what exactly the Linux ethtool:
Supports Wake-on: pumbg
letters actually meant. The man-page is help and it actually is quite simple and logical:

p Wake on PHY activity
u Wake on unicast messages
m Wake on multicast messages
b Wake on broadcast messages
a Wake on ARP
g Wake on MagicPackettm
s Enable SecureOntm password for MagicPackettm
d Disable (wake on nothing). This option clears all previous options.

command line iTunes Connect upload?

Friday, August 25th, 2017

YES!

/Applications/Application\ Loader.app/Contents/Frameworks\
/ITunesSoftwareService.framework/Versions/A/Support/altool –upload-app -f my.pkg -u me@email.com -p thepassword

Why does Apple tell nobody, let us fight with the UI and bug nightmare that is the Application Loader or Xcode!!! :-/ ???

PS: if you are using an older macOS version you may also need to download the new Apple Worldwide Developer Relations Intermediate Certificate:

https://developer.apple.com/support/certificates/expiration/

And if you install older Xcode versions on a newer macOS they can also overwrite the codesign tool or it’s support files you may get:

The product archive package’s signature is invalid. Ensure that it is signed with your “3rd Party Mac Developer Installer” certificate.

In which case for me it helped re-installing the /Applications/InstallOSX…app/Contents/SharedSupport/InstallESD.dmg’s Packages/BSD.pkg

Your milage may vary! :-/

Update:

Also:

/usr/bin/xcrun -sdk iphoneos PackageApplication -v “${RELEASE_BUILDDIR}/${APPLICATION_NAME}.app” -o “${BUILD_HISTORY_DIR}/${APPLICATION_NAME}.ipa” –sign “${DEVELOPER_NAME}” –embed “${PROVISONING_PROFILE}”

best Linux screen capture settings of the day

Friday, June 23rd, 2017

ffmpeg -thread_queue_size 128 -f alsa -i default -f x11grab -isync -r 30 -ac 2 -s 1920×1080 -i :0.0+0,0 -vcodec libx264 -preset veryfast -pix_fmt yuv420p -acodec libmp3lame -ar 44100 -ab 192k -threads 4 -y Desktop.mp4

Update: w/ VAAPI e.g. for Intel’s QuickSync:

ffmpeg -hwaccel vaapi -vaapi_device /dev/dri/renderD128 -thread_queue_size 64 -f alsa -i default -thread_queue_size 64 -f x11grab -isync -r 30 -ac 1 -s 1920×1080 -i :0.0+0,0 -vf ‘format=nv12,hwupload’ -threads 8 -aspect 16:9 -b:v 12500k -vcodec h264_vaapi -af “lowpass=f=7000″ -acodec aac -ab 192k -threads 8 ~/Desktop/`date ‘+%Y%m%d-%H%M%S’.mp4`

The miserable High Sierra install experience

Wednesday, June 7th, 2017

Apple just released the first macOS 10.13 “High Sierra” Beta. Actually I’m quite surprised of the lack of inspiration in naming. They switched from nice cat names, to boring California landmark names, only to go form Sierra to High Sierra? Is there nothing else more investing to name it? Also this results in rather poor google experience when you google for high sierra issues and one get’s overloaded with old Sierra stuff, … Maybe they are just too high in their Cupertino UFO spaceship these days, …

Anyways, the install experience, oh my, god, where should I even start. Why the heck can they not publish proper, good old installer disk images? And with this High Sierra Beta they reached a new sad point of annoyance. So first some “macOSDeveloperBetaAccessUtility.dmg” packages has to be downloaded (150k or so), after some system fiddling (btw, what exactly?) You get a “Install macOS 10.13 Beta.app” int the AppStore like with previous macOS versions. But instead of including all the installer image, it is only 5MB in size.

Starting that app does some Apple authorisation (again), think preventing Hackintosh’s, and then starts downloading the installer disk images into /macOS\ Install\ Data/, like InstallESDDmg.pkg.partial, and such.

So the problem will all this error prone steps is that the first time the download got stuck at some 4.8 GB. Restarting this stupid loader app wiped all the data and stated from scratch!!! :-/ So some hour and another 5GB wasted in the internet later, it rebooted the system just to tell me I would not have enough space. Wait what? It could not determine that before all the wasted time and data? And only offer to reboot, ..!

Guess what? At that point the f*cking installer thing again removed all the 5GB+ installer image from /macOS\ Install\ Data/ !!!!1!!!

So instead of me being able to plug in other external disk or whatever for installation. I now again need to wait an hour or two, and load the 5GB+ of data, again, and again.

Why do they have to re-implement this crappy, error prone downloader, when the App Store already has a download facility that may be more stable, continue stopped downloads and would also leave the installer image where it was for the next test install.

Each year the whole install procedure feel more like a hidden, user unfriendly labyrinth maze that you would expect from Microsoft in Windows, but not from a cleanly structured Unix kind of system we expect macOS to be.

Unfortunately it looks like Apple is giving up on this clean structure for the sake of making Hackintoshs harder thru obscurity.

Sad. Just so sad :-/

What’s up at Apple? Make UI great again!

Tuesday, May 9th, 2017

While traveling abroad the other day I needed to save bandwidth and download an SD video of an HD TV series season pass in iTunes. A long search of hidden easter eggs - but I finally found it:

Why do the companies need to change their UI so often, make things more difficult and hide in the least expected corners? Why can this not be simple, context options where one would expect it?

tcpdump IPv6

Friday, March 31st, 2017

tcpdump -i eth0 -v ip6

Latest Mac’s build in hardware test

Wednesday, March 1st, 2017

Historically there was an Apple hardware test that you could boot to check if your Mac’s hardware is all good.

It came to a surprise though, that with newer Macs simply holding the ‘d’ during power on it runs some simple hardware diagnostic, too.

One should probably more often read Apple’s support pages, ..

TEAC HR Audio Player for iOS

Thursday, January 5th, 2017

This thing, when you buy a Teac HA-P50 for some Hi-Res Audio testing, and the matching iOS app (you know, for hi-res, FLAC and such, …, sigh) produces extremely audible clicks and pops that sounds like buffer under run / overflow / whatever - on a recent iPhone 6s no less.

What the heck are the vendor’s thinking to ship such crap to their premium paying customers?

Funny thing, other apps, such Apple’s own Music.app do not have this clicks and pops, … ???!!!

Judging from the App review an at least one year old problem:

PS: And why the heck do they sell the Teac HA-P50 for US$199 in the states, and for 299€ in Europe?

Random cloud changes

Friday, October 21st, 2016

For a while I already watched some other business struggling with workflow inefficiency by using cloud services that randomly (like monthly) change some user interface, options etc. and thus waste hours and hours of the time of workers to actually get their work done.

While we protect our data and investment by not using cloud services for anything productive (exception like Google Adwords, …) today we hit a similar issue. I automated invoice generation from our online store PayPal email notifications. Some days ago on October the 15th PayPal deviced out of the blue sky that it would probably be nice if they modernized their email templates.

Well, great for them, no so for our nicely script automated invoice generation. But even for the users:

Before the PayPal notifications where: Content-Type: multipart/alternative; with a Content-Type: text/plain; charset=UTF-8 and a Content-Type: text/html; charset=UTF-8 and about 20 kB in size.

Unix veterans could still nicely read the text/plain part in pine, mutt or wherever. The new emails did away with the text/plain part, and only send a Content-Type: text/html; charset=UTF-8 and the designers even blew that up to now consume a whooping 90kB.

Worst of all as of today they still send us a mix of old a new template based emails. Obviously awesome for some reliable processing, …

So this is what the silicon valley companies call progress? :-/

Update: Most of the size increase is actually mobile optimization CSS. WTF optimization is that? I rather have a smaller, plain text email than a 80kB CSS monster when I’m on the go :-/

Can the tech industry please stop messing with everything and thereby actually making things worse? :-/!