back to article Apple Snow Leopard update sets stage for Lion

If you plan to install Mac OS X Lion on your Mac when that new operating system becomes available next month, you'll first want to install the latest Mac OS X Snow Leopard update, 10.6.8, which was released on Thursday. After all, Lion will be distributed through the online Mac App Store, and the Snow Leopard 10.6.8 update …


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  1. farizzle
    Thumb Up

    Rate the article 10/10

    purely because of the use of the word 'megabytages' - lovely!

  2. I am the Walrus

    How big was your download!

    I have a laptop and a desktop both of which I keep up to date (I usually leave it few days after updates come out before installing just to see if any issues are reported). Checked on both today and on both just that update is over a gig!

  3. Lord Elpuss Silver badge

    Printer updates

    Epsom 2.7 at 961.5MB - I'm sorry, how much??? I'm assuming that contains full drivers for every Epson printer ever made since the year dot (matrix), and even then I wonder what's taking up the other 900MB!

    1. Giles Jones Gold badge


      OSX uses CUPS for printing. It's possible the driver is dependent on a specific version of CUPS that needs to be bundled with the driver.

      1. lurker

        Maybe, but...

        The current version CUPS weighs in at around 5MB, compressed.

      2. Tim Walker

        Downloadus humungii

        When Lion was announced the other week, I figured it was time to get our iMac upgraded to Snow Leopard (yes, I *know* I left it late...). During the process of getting all the associated updates, I spotted that one of them was an HP printer software upgrade (we have an HP LaserJet network printer).

        To my amazement, said HP bundle weighed in at a backbone-troubling 1.2Gb - suffice it to say I left that one going overnight.

        Makes you wonder what they put in there (flight simulator? artificial intelligence? SkyNet?)...

    2. Paul M 1


      Yeah, seems very strange. I got it as a normal software update and it was only a few meg - probably detected the 2 specific models I have connected and just downloaded those.

      Still... nearly a gig for printer drivers.. that's impressive!

  4. G2

    961.5 MB??

    wtf, almost 1gig for a DRIVER? are they nuts?

  5. Pooka

    I can do numbers and letters....

    Hang on.... did I really just read 900mb+ for a printer driver?!?!?!?

    That's just..... insane!

    1. dave 46

      More than one

      Didn't Nvidia go through a stage of including every product in one driver? Easy for Noobs but by god the download size quickly got out of hand.

    2. Nameless Faceless Computer User

      Here's your problem...

      As an owner of an Hp printer, I've noticed they snuck in OCR character recognition into their latest update. It's cool. It works very well. That probably accounts for the near 1gig of driver updates. But, I don't need it.

  6. sdhodges

    What about the little man.....

    So how are those among us who have really rubbish broadband links ever going to download a 1GB update???? I'm also thinking I'm never going to be able to update to Lion if it's a download only, I'll just have to leave it downloading for about a month

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Apple is all about the consumer experience...

      I'm guessing the man-with-a-small-connection just doesn't fit into their idea of an "Apple Consumer"

      ps where's the duck-and-cover icon?

      pps where's the Keep Calm And Carry On icon?

    2. Robert Carnegie Silver badge

      Here's how (maybe)

      I did this a couple of times (on Windows things) with varying success... if you have a calendar month bandwidth cap, start the download around the end of the month, use most of the remaining bandwidth allowance, pause it or just time it right... then complete the operation using the next month's bandwidth.

      But it may be more convenient to replace the printer.

  7. Anonymous Coward

    Download Caps

    For some, (if you are unlucky like "I am the Walrus", the OS and Driver updates are almost half your monthly usage!

    Now can we stop compairing "my download is bigger then yours" and somebody start the fanboy's already, I need a good laugh!

  8. XMAN

    Yes, it is every driver ever

    The reason why practically any printer just works when you plug it into a mac is because every driver ever made (nearly :P) has already been downloaded and installed onto your system.

    That's why the file is so large.

    1. Martijn Otto


      The same goes for linux, but I don't see any GB big printer driver updates there

  9. Snapper


    1Gb for drivers, but it is all the drivers for that printer company.

    I'd like to see Apple give an alternate link in their software update box that takes you to the manufacturers site to just download the drivers you want.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    How long until...

    ...I can click Shutdown, Restart or Log Off and my Mac will actually Shutdown, Restart or Log Off without various dialogue boxes appearing about something cancelled it or timed out. Now I just switch it off at the wall.

    1. Tony Smith, Editor, Reg Hardware (Written by Reg staff)

      Re: How long until...

      Go into your Library folder - the one within your home folder - and clear out the contents of the Caches folder.

      This always speeds up shutdowns and start-ups for me.

    2. stu 4


      I have 5 macs.

      1. that hardly ever happens to me when I shut one down.

      2. I hardly ever shut one down - suspend is king. why are you shutting it down all the time ??? unlike windoze: suspend works reliably every time on laptops and desktops.

      3. if it happens... you've got stuff you've not saved or that's hung... probably summit you want to know about I'd have thought.

    3. jubtastic1

      Yes, keep doing that

      When it no longer boots because the filesystem is corrupt someone like me can charge you for fixing it :)

      The time out is a safeguard, it's designed to allow you to intervene if an app can't quit, maybe because there are unsaved changes but in my experience it's usually because 10+ apps are all trying to quit at the same time and the disk can't respond quickly enough.

      Quit apps manually (cmd+tab+q, q, q etc), or get a faster disk (like an SSD), or be prepared for when it inevitably fails from the forced power outages.

      1. Ian Yates
        Thumb Down


        "unlike windoze: suspend works reliably every time on laptops and desktops"

        Maybe it's just me, but my "Windoze" boxes suspend/hibernate every day without issue - and I've done this for years.

        I think you need to update your trolling.

        1. chr0m4t1c


          Lucky you, I don't have a single Windows machine that will successfully do that more than about five times before it either BSODs or flatly refuses to suspend/hibernate because of one of the drivers and I have to reboot meaning I find it far from reliable.

          It's possible that it's just you, but I seriously doubt either of us a unique.

          Now, to complete the Bingo Card of Meaningless Anecdotal Evidence, we need a Mac owner who always has problems with suspending their machine.

          Any volunteers?

  11. Anonymous Coward

    Printer Drivers

    Regardless of the size of the driver, the support & functionality is still lacking on Mac's. I have a multifunction scanner/printer/wotever and it runs fine on Win 7 in bootcamp but on OS X either the scanner works or printer works or nothing at all.

    Tried every print driver from Apple & manufacturer to no avail, the support thread is pages long but no-one has achieved getting it all working.

    Skeletor - he looks healthier than Jobs.

    1. Individual #6/42

      complaining about it 'not working'

      If you don't link to the support site or provide details this just looks like trolling.

      I've never had any problems with printer or scanners, just remember to dump the software that comes on the discs and use the Apple provided drivers.

      Plus shouldn't somewhere called Greyskull have belonged to the skeletal guy anyway...

  12. Charlie Clark Silver badge

    Weighty download

    475 MB here and apart from avoiding the recent itunes update I already have them all. Is his Jobness distributing little Stevie horcruxes?

    Hope the IPv6 fixes include something that repairs the broken firewall - worked in 10.5 but has been broken in all the 10.6 releases.

  13. Elmer Phud Silver badge

    Just the drivers?

    As a non-Mac user (would like - can't afford) I am used to 'printer drivers' coming with all sorts of unwanted dross. All the majors seem to need to bundle in crap tey think you might need to ensure that you only use thier product ever again. Even for separate printers form the same company it's usually one big file that spawns numerous 'helpers' (the there's uisng Ccleaner afterwards to stop half a dozen new things from calling home once every fifteen minutes)

    Could it be that it's this extra baggage that is causing the bloat - actual drivers themselves don't seem to take up much space?

  14. Nick L

    DO NOT INSTALL if you run HandsOff from Metakine

    I've just spend a fun morning recovering from this... The Kernel Extension used by HandsOff (a firewall from Metakine) causes a kernel panic with 10.6.8. Safe mode won't let you bypass it either.

    Simple solution: upgrade HandsOff before installing 10.6.8

    Fix a mess solution: boot from OSX install DVD, go to terminal

    cd /Volumes/yourharddrive/System/Library/Extensions

    mv HandsOff.kext /


    Enjoy a once again booting mac, then run Hands Off and update the app...

  15. John 62

    Lexmark - bawh

    el cheapo Lexmark z25 bought in Lidl for uni back in 2002.

    i) horribly expensive ink got me for years on windows (prices have come down, but they must have stopped grinding whole unicorn horns into each cartridge when they made the new Vizix formula. I gave up on compatibles and refills because the ink was useless)

    ii) ancient Classic-era drivers on OS X actually worked better in 10.5 than 10.4, but no longer works in 10.6 and isn't listed in the latest update :(

    No I do so little printing I use my parents' Epson (which scans beautifully in OS X, but the printer driver is pants and doesn't properly support changing cartridges - hopefully this update will fix that)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Old Lexmark printers...

      My Samsung ML-1520 is not that old either, however, Mac OS X doesn't support it either. But there is a project out there that does support older printers, either with CUPS support, or via Ghostscript. The drivers are not perfect, but they are better than what I expected.

  16. Robert Synnott

    On giant printer drivers

    Unfortunately, some printer companies seem to only make their official drivers available in huge bundles. If you want a Mac driver for a HP laser printer, for instance (direct from HP, not from Apple), you have to download a 200MB package with drivers for every HP LaserJet ever. Alternatively you can get a much smaller CUPS profile and install it manually, but this is generally more likely to lack control of certain printer features.

    And HP is actually _good_, as far as these things go; at least they separate out laser printers and other printers, resulting in two very big packages rather than one vast one.

  17. gdev

    Portugal time zones

    "Corrects timezone data in iCal for Lisbon-Portugal."

    I'm not surprised - have you seen how complex Portugal's time zones have been?


  18. kain preacher Silver badge

    1 gig

    Are you sure that 1 gig files is for every printer ? I have a HP J6480 and the drives alone is 246.43M in windows The mac OS 10.6 is only 183M. 255M in XP. 255m in vista. 123M in 2000(but you don't get full use)

  19. Kevin

    install = verb, installation = noun

    Don't feel bad about it though, it's a common mistake.

    Therefore the sub-heading should read:

    "The installation before the installation"

    The same applies to invite/invitation. You may invite someone to a meeting, but you always send them an invitation (not an invite).

    Journalists these days.... tsk tsk.

    1. /dev/null

      Verbing weirds language.

      As Calvin would say (or was it Hobbes?)

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