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TidBITS Watchlist: Notable Software Updates for 3 March 2014

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Mellel 3.3.1 -- RedleX has released Mellel 3.3.1, a fix-filled follow-up to the previous update that added several new features (see “Mellel 3.3,” 9 February 2014). The word processing app rejiggers the opening and closing behavior of the Find strip (a much requested fix), with Command-F now always opening or focusing on the strip and Command-J closing and scrolling to the correct spot in your document. The update also fixes several bugs associated with RTF files (from detecting bold and italics in Cocoa-based RTF files, such as from TextEdit and Scrivener, to a crash caused by pasting RTF text), puts an end to a problem with palettes being repositioned incorrectly after connecting to an external monitor while in full screen mode, and fixes an issue that caused a selection to “misbehave” and become slow and unresponsive when editing a comment while the Statistics palette was open. ($39 new from RedleX and the Mac App Store, free update, 100 MB, release notes)

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Downcast 1.0.10 -- Jamawkinaw Enterprises has released version 1.0.10 of its Downcast podcatcher app with new options for sorting local episodes by time remaining and file size. It also adds a 1.25x playback speed option and an episode count to the Local and Available episode lists. The release also fixes a bug that prevented episode duration from displaying, an issue that prevented sharing via email, a problem that caused authentication failures for password-protected podcasts (which may require you to re-enter your credentials), and a couple of bugs associated with playback speed settings. As of this writing, the Mac App Store had not updated Downcast to version 1.0.10. ($9.99 new from the Mac App Store, free update, 6.4 MB, release notes)

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Mac Pro SMC Firmware Update 2.0 -- Apple has released Mac Pro SMC Firmware Update 2.0 for Mac Pro models released at the end of 2013. The System Management Controller (SMC) update enables most Power Nap activities to proceed without running the Mac Pro’s fan, and it fixes a rare problem that prevented low-speed USB devices from being detected at boot. As always, be careful not to interrupt the update process when applying a firmware update. (Free, 585 KB)

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iTunes 11.1.5 -- Apple has released iTunes 11.1.5, a slim update that fixes an issue that caused iTunes to quit unexpectedly when a device was connected. The release also improves compatibility with iBooks for OS X 10.9 Mavericks. iTunes 11.1.5 is available as a direct download from Apple’s iTunes Web page or via Software Update. (Free, 222 MB)

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Safari 6.1.2 (Mountain Lion and Lion) -- For those who haven’t updated to OS X 10.9 Mavericks and its associated Safari 7, Apple has released Safari 6.1.2 with fixes to AutoFill problems on a variety of Web sites, including united.com and americanairlines.com. The update also addresses a problem that caused Safari to freeze when installing extensions while VoiceOver is on and plugs a number of WebKit-related security vulnerabilities that could lead to application termination or arbitrary code execution. Safari 6.1.2 is available for 10.8 Mountain Lion and 10.7 Lion, but not 10.6 Snow Leopard or earlier, and only through Software Update. (Free, 53 MB)

Read/post comments about Safari 6.1.2 (Mountain Lion and Lion).

Security Update 2014-001 (Mountain Lion and Lion) -- Along with OS X 10.9.2 (see “10.9.2 Fixes Critical SSL Security Bug, Adds FaceTime Audio,” 25 February 2014), Apple has released Security Update 2014-001 with security fixes for those still using OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion, 10.7 Lion, and 10.7 Lion Server. Alas, it seems that people running 10.6 Snow Leopard are now out in the cold, since this is the first security update to drop Snow Leopard-specific fixes. Security Update 2014-001 doesn’t need to address the recently discovered SSL/TLS security vulnerability (see “Apple Updates iOS and Apple TV to Fix Critical SSL Security Bug,” 24 February 2014) because it doesn’t affect versions of Mac OS X prior to 10.9. But the fixes it provides are still significant, addressing vulnerabilities in app sandboxing, font handling, image display, Nvidia drivers, Quick Look, QuickTime, and the system clock, along with the Apache Web server and PHP scripting language. (All updates are free. For 10.8 Mountain Lion, 115.8 MB; for 10.7 Lion, 123.4 MB; for 10.7 Lion Server, 173.6 MB.)

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