Thoughtful, detailed coverage of the Mac, iPhone, and iPad, plus the best-selling Take Control ebooks.



Pick an apple! 
Syslogd Overwhelming Your Computer?

If your Leopard (Mac OS X 10.5) system is unexpectedly sluggish, logging might be the culprit. Run Activity Monitor (Applications/Utilities/ folder), and click the CPU column twice to get it to show most to least activity. If syslogd is at the top of the list, there's a fix. Syslogd tracks informational messages produced by software and writes them to the asl.db, a file in your Unix /var/log/ directory. It's a known problem that syslogd can run amok. There's a fix: deleting the asl.db file.

Launch Terminal (from the same Utilities folder), and enter these commands exactly as written, entering your administrative password when prompted:

sudo launchctl stop

sudo rm /var/log/asl.db

sudo launchctl start

Your system should settle down to normal. For more information, follow the link.

Visit Discussion of syslogd problem at Smarticus


Pacer Update

Send Article to a Friend

Patience is a virtue, right? Well, Pacer Software Inc. has just rewarded its loyal PacerTerm customers for being so virtuous, by sending out a two-diskette update for this high-end Communications Toolbox (CTB)-compatible communications package. The update includes Pacer's long-awaited ZMODEM file transfer tool, which was promised to purchasers last summer.

In addition to the ZMODEM tool, the update package includes PacerTerm 1.0.2, the MacTCP 1.1 update, the Hayes Modem Tool for use with the CTB, and an assortment of updated Pacer CTB tools. The Hayes Modem Tool is a nice addition; this tool is intended to replace the Apple Modem Tool, which is widely held to be the weakest link in the CTB chain.

Of course, the weakness of the Apple Modem Tool simply reflects the fact that Apple's intention was for third-party developers to provide the REAL functionality for the Communications Toolbox, and Pacer and Hayes have clearly answered the call. The Hayes tool offers numerous improvements over the Apple tool that it replaces (among other things, it's vastly more configurable), and Pacer's ZMODEM tool is, as far as I know, the first one available for the CTB.

With the number of users clamoring for a ZMODEM file transfer tool for use with Communications Toolbox applications, we suggest that Pacer offer their ZMODEM tool for sale as a stand-alone product. [Adam: I suggested to this to Pacer at Macworld, and they said that although they would like to do just that, they just can't afford the costs of bringing out a commercial package that they couldn't sell for much money.] A reminder, though... Pacer's ZMODEM tool is not freeware, and should not be distributed or copied. At first glance it looks like one of Apple's free tools, but it's not one of them. PacerTerm is $249 retail, which is bit steep just to get a ZMODEM tool, but it's an excellent package overall.

[Adam: Also note that Seaquest Software will supposedly ship in April an extension to the Communications Toolbox to support ZMODEM transfers. It will be bundled with Seaquest's XMODEM and YMODEM tools for $69.]

Pacer Software -- 619/454-0565
Seaquest Software -- 503/531-0252


READERS LIKE YOU! Support TidBITS by becoming a member today!
Check out the perks at <>
Special thanks to Bernd Albrecht, Donald C O'Shea, Richard Theriault,
and Thomas Hazard for their generous support!