Mac OS 8.6 Info
This page contains all the info I have gathered on OS 8.6 and how it will affect the 6400
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6/10/1999 Mac OS 8.6 on the 6400: Well I've been using it for a little bit now and don't really have anything good or bad to say about it! I guess thats good :) I don't notice the improvments and I don't find any incompatibilities with my stuff except for the G3 upgrades. Please email me your experiences if it has improved or gone down hill. Thanks.
Letter from 6400 users that upgraded to OS 8.6: Thanks for the letters and keep them coming.
I have a 6400/180 + Millenium2 with motherboard clocked to 50 MHz, with cooling fan glued to the original passive cooler. Everything was fine under 8.5.1, no crashes or freezes. But after the upgrade (and clean installation) of 8.6 sound stutters during mp3 playback and in games with background music. That happens when the virtual memory is on. When I switch it off, everything's fine. I've even tried to fix that with those xtensions from ATI and Apple that take care of sound problems with PCI cards - nada .
So I've downgraded back to 8.5.1 ...
Not sure if this is an OS issue or clocking issue but it sounds like an OS issue. Anyone else have this problem?
[Since I have updated my Performa 6400/180/88MB/L2Cache512K/XClaim VR4MB from Mac OS 8.5.1 to Mac OS 8.6 my Bootup time has increased, it is 2 Min 52 sec in duration since the upgrade, seems much longer then it was with Mac OS 8.5.1, Do I have a problem??????? I have not installed any additional extensions since the update. Bewitched, Bothered, & Bewildered. Please advise.]
Does anyone else notice a very long boot? My system hangs just after the Date & Time is displayed in the menu bar. This is the time its trying to get an IP address through my cable modem. Oddly my PB G3 does not have this problem when I connect it to the cable modem? http://www.macfixit.com mentions that many people are having this issue and it all seems to be related to having your TCP/IP control panel set to DHCP. Still others do not have it set like this and still get a hang.
[I have a Performa 6400/180 with 48MB RAM (50MB with VM), no L2 cache, a bunch of extensions and AOL 4.0. System 8.6 has changed my machine. With 8.5.1, I had many crashes and could not stop the type 3 errors. With 8.6, my machine is more stable, feels faster, I get faster downloads. I don't know what will happen if I ever get a G3 card, but I'm very satisfied with 8.6.
Keep up the good work. I Love your site.
Have Sonnet finally fixed it, it seems so. The new extension 1.3.6 final, under its real name in the extensions folder under 8.6 has yet to crash. I have removed my Geoport though. With the Geoport, 1.3.5 named ~/ZCresendo in the Control Panels it's most stable arrangement, under 8.5.1 it was kind of a greyhound, in other words a fast dog. Now its a dream.
At last a fast and stable Mac. Positive feedback, well done, at last, Sonnet.
Mark (Your 5400 UK based correspondent)]
Good, 2 happy customers :)
Set Volume zero Apple script no longer works with OS 8.6
I noticed that my PB G3 will not set the volume to zero anymore thru a shutdown. The script works fine while the PB is running but I now get a chime at starup or restart where once the set volume zero script silenced it. 6400's can not have a zero volume and will always chime on boot but does anyone have a different Mac where the script used to work and now doesn't with OS 8.6? Please email with the details. Thanks
Mouse Pauses with OS 8.6
Earlier I mentioned getting ADS's USB card to work on my 6400 with a hacked version of Apples USB drivers. It still works but using Logitex's Wheel Mouse, I notice a freeze every now and then for a few seconds where the mouse seems locked up. It only lasts a few seconds and then the computer continues on its merry way but it does bother me! I'm not sure why it does this but I think it has something to due with the mouse no longer being a low level call. Apples Mouse driver resides in the System file or Boot ROM so it has very low level calls and this is why the mouse will move no matter whats going on. In fact this may be why the mouse can grind the OS to a hault when you click on a menu item. A USB mouse on the other hand has just a software driver loaded during boot so its a program running in higher level calls like any other program and when the OS gets bogged down thinking on something and other apps hault, guess what?, so does your mouse!
I may be wrong but this is what I think is happening. If it happens to you then be patient as it will start working again. If you have a USB card with a mouse I would like to hear your comments.
On the other hand it could be a bug that Apple needs to work out?
USB mouse freezes on the 6400 update: It may be the Apple USB drivers causing the problem? I just installed the latest USB 1.2 developers kit and the freezes are not as drastic as they used to be but the freeze is still there. Maybe with more tweeking they will vanish?
UPDATE 6/20/1999: Here is a letter from Pasal who also has this problem but with a Logitech trackball. It is an ADB trackball and not USB so maybe its just a non-Apple mouse issue with 8.6? Thanks for the info Pascal
One more data point for you that sounds similar to your USB mouse freezes: I have a 6400/200 with Logitech trackball. After installing 8.6 I get these pauses for a few seconds, during which nothing can happen (I can move the mouse but the pointer doesn't change depending on the region it's in, and the system otherwise appears locked). Since my apps are locked, if your USB "driver" works like an app, then it makes sense that it would freeze too. I reverted back to 8.1, and the pauses are gone. Can you try 8.1 with your USB mouse? I am not using DHCP so the temporary freezes attributed to it when running 8.6 by MacFixit can't be the cause. Looks like a MacOS bug or incompatibility present in 8.6.
7/10/1999 USB mouse pause update: I got a copy of the ADS's USB drivers and installed them to see if they would help my mouse and system pauses. It turns out that they are just Apples USB drivers version 1.1. I already tried these before and am up to version 1.3f3 of Apples drivers now with minimal changes. The pause is less with version 1.3 but still present.
7/11/1999 More mouse pause info: I found this at Accelerate Your Mac's web site. It has to due with mouse ghosting with video cards but it might also help me out to. I'll let you know if it works.
[Ult. Rez Ghosting Tip: A reader responded to an earlier problem post with a few tips:
Tell him to remove the AIM Menu, it's been reported to cause weird mouse cursor problems. He also might want to delete the Idle Time Extension as well, it causes instability in Netscape. The AOL Instant Messenger runs perfectly fine without these two components.
Jungsik Suh "
This problem may not be with OS 8.6 only as Pasal also reports having this issue. I asked him to see if he has the above extensions installed and to try and remove them.
I am starting to have pauses also in 8.1. I'm beginning to wonder if there's an extension/init conflict.
7/17/1999 More info on mouse pauses: I received some info from Pascal who is having similar issues to my Mouse Pauses but in OS 8.1. Here is our conversation.
I am starting to have pauses also in 8.1. I'm beginning to wonder if there's an extension/init conflict.
>Are your pauses where the mouse and all apps just stop for a few seconds and
>then resume like nothing ever happened? This is my problem.
Yes, with the exception that the mouse still moves around, but the cursor doesn't change, and clicking doesn't do anything for a while and then it remembers all at once everywhere I clicked.
>Are you using a non Apple mouse that needs a control panel or extension to get more features?
Yes, Logitech's Mousekey. Also, if I have both Apple's mouse control panel and MouseKey enabled when I boot, the boot process freezes until I move the mouse a bit (OS 8.1, but not 8.5-8.6). Disabling Apple's mouse seems to make things a bit better.
do you have AOL's instant messanger installed? No. I got rid of that thing as fast as I could, as well as the promo launcher. I resented not having the choice of not installing it in the custom install.
His problem is different in that his mouse still moves but registers nothing until the System unpauses. He is also using a non-Apple mouse which is leaning me in the direction that there may be a problem with mice that require specific drivers to get their full functionality. I never thought of trying to remove Apples mouse control panel and will give that a try. Although, so far using the latest USB drivers 1.3f4 and having removed the AOL Instant messanger menu extension, I havn't had a pause yet! Keeping my fingers crossed :)
8/20/1999 Mouse Freeze update: I just moved my USB card to the Sonnet upgraded 6400 along with my Voodoo2 card to see if I would still get the mouse freezes. It appears to be OK on this system so maybe it was the PCI chassi bandwidth causing my problems? I am not using the mouse drivers right now so the extra button features don't work. I am testing one step at a time to see what might have been causing the freezes.
9/3/1999 Mouse Pause issue update: I moved the USB card to my other 6400 and so far I haven't had any pauses at all? I wonder if the PCI chassis caused the problem? Its possible that the 6400 is too slow to handle so many PCI cards passing data through one PCI slot on the mother board? I am in contact with Magma and they're helping me work this out.
Another thing I noticed was I was unable to play any game with the Voodoo2 card as long as the USB drivers were enabled when the cards were both in the PCI chassis. I got like 5 FPS max! with the USB drivers disabled, games FPS was fine. Now on the other 6400 with no Chassis both cards run fine together which tells me that the data bandwidth on the 6400's PCI slots cannot handle the chassis running more then one card at a time. So it seems I can fill the chassis up with PCI cards as long as I try no to access more then one or two at any given time. An example of this would be to put a video card in the 6400 and a SCSI card in the chassis and set as a boot drive. If both were in the chassis then neither would work to their full potential.
9/24/1999 Update on my Mouse Pause issue: awhile ago I had removed my USB card with Logitech Wheel mouse and Voodoo2 card to my other 6400 without the PCI chassis to see if my mouse pause issue still persisted. Well it did not and everything worked fine! So now I am wondering what the issue is on the other 6400? I placed the cards back in the chassis and I tried disabling most of my extensions and the pauses reduced drastically for the most part but are still present in some games. Specially the games I play on the Voodoo2 card like Unreal and Quake3 Test. The pauses in Unreal are almost nonexistent but they still happen very often in Q3T. The problem seems definitly related to my PCI chassis but I can help reduce the problem by disabling extensions and making more main memory available? Game play goes fine for the most part but when a new affect happens or some big screen change happens the system pauses for a few seconds and then continues. This is OK for solo missions but playing online in Q3T is horrible. I can bee 100% certian that when my system awakes I will not be standing :)
Just to remind you, I do not have this issue with the USB and Voodoo2 cards in the 6400 alone but only when both are in my PCI chassis. Since probably none of you have a PCI chassis I wouldn't worry about it. I think I can call this problem closed for now unless I get some new info. It seems the 6400 may just have too slow of a mother board to handle this much data thru put :(
Mac OS 8.6 font bug; affects password entries; work-around offered
I found all of this from MacFixIt's web site. Alsoft has a fix but it requires ResEdit and some detective work.
[A report from Alsoft's Ask Al describes a general problem with "old style" fonts in Mac OS 8.6. It is due to a bug in the Mac OS 8.6 Font Manager. We have also previously noted this on MacFixIt. The Ask Al page includes instructions for a ResEdit hack that fixes the bug.
Alsoft claims this bug is also the root cause of crashes with entering password text in certain applications when running Mac OS 8.6 (as has been recently covered on MacInTouch). One MacInTouch reader noted that the source of "the problem is that, in OS 8.6, Apple removed support for data fork based fonts."
Hard Disk ToolKit is one application vulnerable to this password bug. A statement on an FWB web page reads: "Known issues with Mac OS 8.6: Applying password protection at any level. You need to turn off Virtual Memory in the Memory Control Panel or else entering any text in the security dialog will cause the main application to unexpectedly quit."]
6/24/1999 DiamondSoft made a fix for the OS 8.6 font issue: Click here to get info on there fix. Basically its an extension that will fix any font as soon as OS 8.6 corrupts it. This is better then the previous method the Alsoft suggested which was to use ResEdit to fix the fonts.
7/30/1999 Apple has a fix for the OS 8.6 font issue: Apple just released FontFixer which is supposed to fix the Font related issues caused by OS 8.6. I haven't tried it yet but I hear its working great.
Memory errors with OS 8.67/23/1999
Dan is reporting getting unmapped memory exception errors in certain apps after upgrading to OS 8.6. I received one other report of this from someone having this same error when trying to run SimpleText. I asked him to try increasing the RAM allocation to any app having this issue. If anyone has an answer please email me. Thanks
[I have a 6400/180 with 80 MB RAM, and I installed 8.5 and upgraded to 8.6 last week. It eats up your memory doesn't it? I keep getting application crashes with the message "unmapped memory exception" or something similar. It happens frequently in QuarkXpress 4.04.- so much so that I can't use it, but sometimes in Photoshop 5 and sometimes the finder. I have QXP memory set at 20,000. The freezes happen whether I have Virtual Memory on or off. Any fixes out there? Does Quark have a fix for OS8.6? I appreciate your website and info you have provided. I checked it out before I installed 8.5 or 8.6. I did install the new OS with extensions off. Thanks...
Struggling in Hollywood, Florida....Dan]
More 8.6 issues: Victor is having random crashes while using Sherlock after upgrading to OS 8.6. He already tried giving it more memory and even reinstalling Sherlock with no change.
[Since Mac OS 8.6 Upgrade I have experienced crash/freeze, the freeze occurs after web site opens, cursor wiil remain stationary and there is no response when clicking the mouse button. I would like to hear from anyone that has experienced this problem please contact Victor Park <firstname.lastname@example.org> Apple Mactinosh Performa 6400/180/2GBHD/136MB/L2512K/ATIXClaimVR is my present configuration. I have searched Apple TIL's and Tech Exchange postings have yet to find a solution for solving my problem. Apple Support seems to ignore my request for assistance thru Tech Exchange. Perhaps someone from 6400 Zone could give me advice or assistance.]
7/30/1999 More Memory errors related to OS 8.6: Nigel has similar issues to Dan but with different programs. If anyone has an answer please email me. Thanks.
[Sorry, no solutions here. But I can report having exactly the same problems since upgrading to 8.6 with many applications, including AOL, IE 4.5, Excel, and Word. I have 88MB of RAM installed, and it seems to happen regardless of whether or not I am running RAM doubler. I thought it might be related to not having the most recent version of Megaphone, so I shelled out the bucks for the upgrade, but that didn't make any difference either. This one has been a real puzzle for me for the past 2 months! I'll keep watching your site for any solutions. I keep it on my toolbar favorites-that's how good it is. Cheers!]
9/3/1999 Memory Errors with OS 8.6 installed: Jeffrey writes that a clean install may do the trick to clear up the memory errors with OS 8.6. It will be some effort to get all your old prefs and extensions that were not updated dragged back over but if this will fix the problem then give it a try. Thanks Jeffrey.
DHCP issues with OS 8.6 and OS 912/3/1999
Click here for more info on this issue and cable/DSL modems
Many cable modem and DSL modem users have had issues using DHCP to conect to their service provider. The most common issue is a lost connection after 10min or so or pauses every 10min or so. The main problem is with the OpenTransport that comes with these OS's. OpenTransport seems to try and renegotiate an IP address license very often which disrupts the connection. There are 2 remedies for this until Apple can fix it.
1. instead of using DHCP you can set your IP manually. This has worked for a lot of people including me. As long as you have a static IP address you can manually set yout TCP/IP control panel and then you'll never have your Mac try to negotiate a new IP address which cuts the pauses and lost connections conpletely. At least the DHCP related one :)
2. If you don't have a static IP address or if manual is not working for some reason (I had one 6400 user not able to connect to Arizonas US West DSL with a manual setting in OS 8.6) you can revert to an older version of OpenTransport. I would only do this if DHCP and manual settings don't seem to work. You can do a custom install of OT from an OS 8.5.x CD. 1st choose Customize then deselect every option then choose custom install from the Mac OS 8.5 line. Now open up the Networking and Connectivity folder. In here you will find OT. Also if you wish to use AppleSharing then I suggest you also install that to make sure they are all compatible versions.
I know #2 will work if you have OS 8.6 installed and you revert to OS 8.5's OpenTransport but other variations might not? If you want to try it I suggest making a backup first. I think the reason Manual did not work for this user was because US West's service does not require a DNS server name. Without a name server address your computer cannot locate anything online. Somehow with DHCP this is not a problem for US West?
1/21/2000 OpenTransport 2.6 for older OS's to fix DHCP issues: Click here to visit my Cable/DSL modem info page which has info on how to get OT 2.6 installed on older OS's then OS 9.
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This page last updated 4/6/2000