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

 

 

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Beware Country-Specific iTunes Stores

If you buy an iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad, and you happen to be a user of the iTunes Store in more than one country, take note which country's store you're viewing in iTunes when you plug in the device for the first time. This will be the country the device will register with, and you will be forever barred from purchasing or even updating free apps from anywhere else. The only way out is to delete everything on the device and do a full restore.

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QuickTime 7.4 Improves Security, but Not Enough

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Apple updated its media workhorse QuickTime to version 7.4 last week, fixing bugs and adding support for new iTunes features such as downloadable movie rentals. But the more important news is that this version squashes a handful of security holes that could allow remote attacks. However, a serious vulnerability discovered shortly before Macworld Expo demonstrates that Apple's engineers need to remain hard at work.

The QuickTime 7.4 update is available for Leopard (a 55 MB download), Tiger (a 51 MB download), Panther (a 50 MB download), and Windows (both XP and Vista, a 22 MB download).

The most recent exploit, not addressed in QuickTime 7.4, takes advantage of a hole in QuickTime's RTSP (Real Time Streaming Protocol) that could open a computer to a denial-of-service attack or possible remote code execution. (RTSP is not a new target; see "Protect Yourself from the QuickTime RTSP Vulnerability," 2007-09-07.) Because QuickTime is the underlying technology of iTunes, Macs and Windows computers running QuickTime are vulnerable. Anyone who uses iTunes or owns an iPod should update.

 

New for iOS 8: TextExpander 3 with custom keyboard.
Set up short abbreviations which expand to larger bits of text,
such as “Tx” for “TextExpander”. With the new custom keyboard,
you can expand abbreviations in any app, including Safari and
Mail. <http://smle.us/tetouch3-tb>