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macOS Monterey 12.6.5 and Big Sur 11.7.6

Apple has released macOS Monterey 12.6.5 and macOS Big Sur 11.7.6 to patch a security vulnerability that could allow arbitrary code execution with kernel privileges (for additional speculation, see “iOS 16.4.1, iPadOS 16.4.1, and macOS 13.3.1 Address Serious Security Vulnerabilities, Fix Bugs,” 7 April 2023). This vulnerability is being exploited in the wild, so we recommend updating immediately. If you notice any problems, please let us know in the comments. (Free, various sizes, macOS 12 and macOS 11)

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Comments About macOS Monterey 12.6.5 and Big Sur 11.7.6

Notable Replies

  1. FWIW, Monterey 12.6.5 hasn’t blown up anything here (yet… ;-)

  2. I updated my iMac from macOS Monterey 12.6.4 to macOS Monterey 12.6.5 late this afternoon.
    And, now Mail suddenly quits at seemingly random intervals. I have sent 3 or 4 of those automatic reports to Apple already.
    Mail was not behaving well under previous OSs, but this is terrible.

    Gil M.
    my system: iMac, 2017, Retina 5K, 27-inch, 3.5 GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i5, 16 GB RAM

  3. No 12.6.5 Mail issues here, but believe me, if you look at my postings elsewhere here, “I feel your pain.”

    Sorry, I have no help. Maybe the “Mailbox / Rebuild” menu item?

    “1. In the Mail app on your Mac, select a mailbox in the sidebar.
    2. Choose Mailbox > Rebuild.”

    I would guess rebuilding the Inbox first?

  4. No Mail issues whatsoever after the update. Similar setup with same iMac, a bit faster and more RAM.

    Have also applied same update to my Big Sur partition. Will let you know if I have any Mail issues there after it runs for awhile.

  5. I was running around doing things, so I only checked in sporadically. It took a long time and tried pressing random keys, but my 2018 MacMini running Monterey 12.6.4 never woke from sleep to show progress. After a while, I tried to look at its screen from my MacbookAir running 12.6.4 and saw what looked like the start-up screen on the Mini, so I went back to see if it had woken up. It hadn’t, and after a few minutes of trying to wake up the Mini and I concluded it was frozen. It successfully restarted after I forced a restart and so far so good. But it’s disturbing to have an upgrade end with a freeze.

  6. So advises me— I have an older iMac that cannot be updated past OSX 10.13.6

    Is it safe to keep using such old hardware–is it left updated by Apple? Or is it time to cough up a thousand dollars for a newer computer again, as I’ve had to do every five or ten years?

    Yeah, I’m old.

  7. After doing the Monterey 12.6.5 update- it completely removed all my printers and settings for those printers.
    I haven’t seen any other screw ups as yet-but it’s only been about 1 day since I did it.

  8. It depends on what you need to use that computer for.

    The big deal is that Apple (probably) won’t be releasing security updates for these old systems. But that really only matters for software that interacts with the Internet.

    So use a compatible browser that is still being kept up to date. For example, Firefox 112 (the current version) requires macOS 10.12 or later.

    If you use an office suite that is no longer being updated for your platform (like Microsoft Office), then don’t use it to open documents received from the Internet. If you’re like me, you may never receive any and therefore don’t have to care. If you do, then you’ll need to see if there is a package you can use that is still supported on macOS 10.13 (sadly, the current version of LibreOffice requires 10.14 or later). Or alternatively, maybe open them with a web-based office package, which will only depend on your browser’s capabilities, not your Mac’s.

    FWIW, I still use a 2011 MacBook Air, running macOS 10.12 (“Sierra”). I run the latest Firefox for my web browsing. I use the most recent Microsoft Office version that is compatible (16.30 - from 2019). Microsoft constantly asks me to upgrade, but there’s nothing to upgrade to, because of the macOS version. But since I only use this computer to create new documents or to edit documents that I created (and never with documents I receive from others), I’m not concerned. And the only other thing I do with this computer is log in to other computers on my network (via screen sharing or SSH sessions).

    I’ll probably replace this computer soon after Firefox drops support for macOS 10.12. And when I do, I’ll probably get the least expensive MacBook Air as a replacement, since every model sold will be better than what I’m using now (2nd gen Core i5, 1.6 GHz, 4GB RAM, 128GB SSD), and even with the minimal RAM and storage configuration, it will be just fine for what I do with this computer.

  9. Just checked and all printers are gone on 12.6.5.

    No problems with mail so far.

  10. After the update, I lost my scanner but not my printer. After some fiddling around I got it back, but I’m not sure exactly what worked.

  11. I apologize for the long delay in returning to this.

    Thank you to Al, Will and Lauri for their suggestions.
    I had rebuilt Mail’s inbox, and the sudden quits persisted. I shut down for the night, and since the next day this problem has not reoccured. Others however …

  12. After restarting a day or two ago, my scanner (Epson Perfection V330 Photo) again does not connect to my Mac via EpsonScan 2, and I cannot reconnect it. I tried reinstalling EpsonScan 2 a couple of times, but no joy. I used Time Machine to reinstall the scanner from a time when it did work, and now it doesn’t. Something is strange here, and all I can say is that the upgrade to 12.6.5 appears to be incompatible with EpsonScan 2, which had worked for at least some earlier versions of 12.6. That’s disappointing. After problems with an earlier upgrade, I bought VueScan, and EpsonScan2 is a more powerful tool. I checked the Epson site and they no longer show any scanning software for the Epson Perfection V330 Photo. Has anybody had any luck with Ventura?

  13. I lost some printers, too, but they were easy enough to set up again.
    However, I have been seeing some real oddities since the update although I cannot be certain that it was the update that caused them. Examples:

    • a few .txt files cannot be opened with TextEdit, BBedit opens them
    • a few .rar files cannot be opened by keka or MacPar
    • and the weirdest of the lot, sometimes when I drag a group of mp3 files to Apple Music only some of them are added to the library, in one recent case I dragged 13 files and 10 were added, separately dragging the “missed” files to Music added them
    • sometimes the trash bin icon says there’s something in the trash, but when I open it, there isn’t anything there and I can’t “empty” it

    I’ve not found any other reports of similar (mis)behaviour, does anyone have any ideas please?
    In the good old days (prior to APFS) :wink:, I’d have run DiskWarrior and looked at the files with File Buddy to see what might be causing it. I know about the problems Alsoft and TechTool have had with APFS but is there a modern equivalent of File Buddy?
    Thanks for any suggestions.

    Model Identifier: MacBookPro15,1
    System Version: macOS 12.6.5 (21G531)

  14. I’d definitely run Disk Utility’s First Aid function on the drive. I could imagine some disk corruption.

    When you say that TextEdit couldn’t open a text file, what actually happened? That’s truly funky since it doesn’t get any simpler than text.

  15. First, this only happens with a minority of files, but when a given file refuses to be opened, then it remains un-openable.
    In the case of the .txt files, I tried double clicking, the application is woken up but nothing happens. I tried control-click and open with text edit, same result. I dragged the file onto the text edit icon, same result.
    Open with, and dragging the file onto the icon, opened the file in BBedit.
    Looking at get info for the recalcitrant file shows nothing out of the ordinary, compared to a similar file that opens normally.
    I wondered whether there was something odd in the file name - invisible characters maybe, characters with accents - so I tried renaming it, same result.
    I’ll try disk utility first aid from the recovery partition and see what happens …
    Thanks for responding!

  16. Well, that’s a relief!
    Made backups / clones / etc. and ran Malwarebytes: nothing found.
    Ran disk utility from recovery and two files which had previously refused to unrar, worked as expected.
    Given that the problem was occasional I’ll have to wait and see if the problem really has gone away.
    Thank you again for your reaction.

  17. I’ve found a smoking gun that points to the 12.6.5 update messing around with printers and scanners. Both the printer and scanner active on the machine and Apple apps carry the same date modified: April 4, 2023 at 3:24 A.M.

    I am not having problems with my printer, but EpsonScan 2 application is not able to contact the scanner. I have been able to wake up the scanner by opening it up under printers and scanners, but modified scanner is crippled and has lost some functions. I tried updating the scanner software on the Epson site, but the updated EsponScan 2 still cannot make contact. What I see now in the Printer folder is an app called EPSON Perfection and copyright by Apple (as are all the Printer files.
    I don’t understand what happened, but it looks like the 12.6.5 update did something.
    I also ran First Air in Disk Utility and it found no problem.

    I just checked Time Machine and the Epson Perfection was NOT in the Printers/Scanners folder before the upgrade. I don’t know where it came from, and that version of the scanner has some important differences from the one I was using earlier. I’m wondering if Apple moved it from somewhere else.

  18. Hi there! Since I updated to 12.6.5 I have severe memory problems because all programs seem to need more ram. Partially ridiculous much: Affinity publisher 6gb, Thunderbird and firefox always >1,5gb, pdf expert with 2 ordinary pdfs open >1GB and so on. Any Idea what to do?

  19. Not severe until the graph turns Red. That’s when you would need to seriously consider increasing the amount of RAM you have. The graph shows that macOS is adequately handling the amount of RAM needed using compression, so whatever is causing the increases should not be of any concern to you at this time.

    I will say that Google Chrome is notoriously famous for using an excessive amount of both RAM and CPU power, so I personally never use it. If you insist on a Chromium based browser, then Brave may be a better choice. Firefox should also be an option and Arc is a new product slowly coming on-line.

  20. Mhh…well…my problems are rather the other above mentioned programs which before updating did not consume as much ram!

  21. I understood that, but since the new Memory Management was introduced by macOS Mavericks, RAM usage monitoring became a thing of the past. Whether 12.6.5 caused those programs to appear to be using more or not something for you to stress over. The OS is managing things just fine.

  22. I agree with Al Varnell’s advice. If you are not noticing a change in the actual performance of the machine, it probably is not worth worrying about the memory usage. For better or worse, current operating systems take a much more active role in memory management than they used to, while limiting the practical steps that users can take to manage memory. My guess is that the OS is caching data more aggressively than in the past and that the cache will be purged as needed by the OS when you need more RAM.

    I realize that may not be a very satisfactory answer. Modern operating systems seem much less productively “tweakable” than their predecessors.

  23. I can’t work because programs refuse to work - lacking RAM. So it’s, as I wrote, severe!

  24. Hello @Bremen-Sebastian - Thank you for the additional information. It makes it easier to try to help. It is very common for people to worry about increased RAM usage in later versions without actually having a problem using their machines. Obviously, if you are having problems getting programs to work, you have a different situation.

    Does the problem happen immediately after rebooting your Mac? There were reports on earlier versions of Monterey about “memory leaks,” where the amount of memory taken by apps increases during use until serious performance issues occur. Perhaps that is still happening.

    There also is the possibility that the problem is not related to RAM. As Al Varnell suggested, the “speicherdruck” graph in the screenshot you shared does not appear unusual. How does your CPU activity look when you have this problem?

    Sometimes problems with a drive can substantially interfere with applications. You might try rebooting into the startup utilities and running the Disk Utility First Aid procedure.

  25. Yes, do not be overly concerned about RAM usage if it there is no degradation in performance. Perhaps the attempted summary on memory usage I posted in an earlier thread (and the discussion) is helpful.

  26. Please tell us how you know this. Are you receiving a notification that a program cannot be launched due to a lack of Application RAM? That would change this discussion completely.

  27. Hi folks, thanks and I’ll do, it’s just, that I probably can’t do it before Monday! I come back to your help!

  28. Yes, up to a point.

    Do not concern yourself with the amount of “free” memory. Trying to maximize free memory is actually counterproductive, because that’s memory sitting idle, that could be put to better use.

    Modern operating systems (including macOS) will use otherwise-free memory to cache various things, like system frameworks, shared libraries and recently-used data from the file system. If the OS would actually free this memory, it would have to reload it from storage later on, hurting performance. If apps need the memory later on, the system can quickly discard it at that time.

    The thing to look out for is if your system starts swapping. There may be a small amount of swap used - this is not a problem. But if it grows to a significant percentage of your total memory size during normal operations (not counting things you don’t do very often), that is a strong hint that you need more RAM.

    Modern Macs have high performance SSDs, so you might not notice the impact of swapping if the system isn’t doing a massive amount of it, but I would still consider it a problem, because large amounts of swapping can reduce the lifespan of an SSD.

    Unfortunately, most Macs these days don’t have upgradable RAM, so if you do need an upgrade, you may have no choice but to upgrade the computer itself.

  29. The relief was short-lived.
    It seems that if there are diacriticals in the file name, eg:
    Bedřich Smetana
    Charivari Agréable
    then double-clicking on the file to open it, or dragging the file to the application icon, “stalls” the application. Thereafter the application seems not to respond to any files until I quit and restart it.
    Deleting the diacritical(s) makes the file openable as normal.
    The disks are not formatted as case sensitive.
    Any suggestions for things to investigate would be appreciated!

  30. Hi there again, as far as my problem is concerned: I was mistaken, mixed up ram with dsik space, stupid me, sorry!

  31. Weird. Apple has supported Unicode filenames for a very long time. This should just work.

    Where did these file names come from? Did you type them in on the Mac? Did you type them on a non-Mac computer (Windows or Linux) and copy them to your Mac? Were they provided by a third party?

    I ask because there are different ways to represent diacriticals in Unicode. If you type in a filename in macOS, they should be “normalized” - meaning they’re using the standard representation. But if the file came from a different source, then they might not be normalized, and that may be triggering a bug in macOS.

    My suggestion to you:

    • If you still have the problematic files, make a backup copy. See if you can create a bug report with Apple about this. Be prepared to send them the files (if you can) if they need them for reproducing the bug. No guarantee that they will get back to you, but it can’t hurt to ask. And if they do get back to you, that will be the best possibility for fixing the bug.

    • What happens if you rename the file from the Finder, re-typing the diacriticals manually? If that works, then clearly, the file names were corrupt, and the new normalized versions work OK. If not, then there are definitely bugs in the apps that are hanging. (I think you previously wrote that you tried this).

    • The fact that BBEdit works and many other apps don’t sort of implies that there are some file APIs that work with these names and some that don’t. Which strongly implies that this is going to be a macOS bug.

    You can always report your bug via Apple’s feedback site, but don’t expect to get a response from that site.

    The other (probably more useful) is to file a bug report through their developer program. You need to be a registered developer, but you can create a free developer account (linked to your Apple ID) which is enough to get access to the bug reporting system. See Bug Reporting - Apple Developer.

  32. Thank you for replying, David.
    The files come from a third party, probably a Windows environment but I don’t know that…
    I have tried deleting the characters with diacriticals (which usually works), but I haven’t tried re-typing the diacriticals on the Mac, that’s an interesting thought.
    I suspect (fear!) that the problem is specific to my computer as I have seen no other reports of problems.
    I’ll set aside some time to do some (more) testing and see if I can make a coherent bug report for Apple.

  33. It looks as if your suggestion about the characters is correct. In the phrase:

    pour choeur à cappella

    it was the à which (apparently) caused the problem. I retyped the à and the file was accepted (the version above is the revised version).

    On the Mac screen, both characters appear the same.

    It gets curiouser and curiouser! I tried renaming a group of files with A Better Finder Rename. Dragging and dropping 22 files onto the icon in the Dock resulted in only the four files without accents in the file name appearing in the files window. Dropping the files into the ABFR window, all 22 files appeared.

    The same thing happened with Metadatics: dropping all 22 files onto the Dock icon, only those files with a filename without accents appeared. Dropping them into the application window, all 22 appeared.

    So two questions:
    Where can I read up on the possible differences in character coding (Unicode, normalised versus not) which appear to be causing the problem?
    What is the difference in the OS processes between dropping on the application icon in the Dock and into the application window?

  34. The first section of this article (‘The problem’) is a great explanation:

  35. Thank you, Jolin, I’ll read that.

  36. That’s interesting, Tom, thank you. That suggests that this might actually be a bug. If so it has been a real time-waster. I’m not on Ventura yet, I’m a late adopter :wink: I usually wait until version X+1 is released before updating to X, but it’s curious that the timing of the problem in Ventura and what I have seen was similar.

    I still find it odd that there’s no discussion of the problem in Monterey.

  37. Howard’s Apfelstrudel application reveals that the file names are in the composed form. Converting it to the non-composed form (using Apfelstrudel) allows the file to behave normally.

    This seems to suggest that the bug(s) lie either in the handling of file names by the different destination applications, and / or in the handling of file names by the OS as they are passed to the applications.

    That there is a difference in behaviour depending on whether I drag and drop files into an application window, or onto it’s Dock icon, suggests to me that the problem is in the OS.

  38. It could also be that whether or not the OS normalises the filename depends on whether you drop onto the application window or the Dock, but the bug is still in the application. If the application has a bug that can’t handle one form of the filename, then the bug will only be activated in one case, even though there’s not a bug in the OS, just different behaviour. This is pure conjecture. Of course, this really shouldn’t happen at all, whatever the interplay and location of the bug is!

  39. As far as the application is concerned, these are two completely different mechanisms. And if you try to open the file via the app’s “File → Open” menu, that’s a third.

    Each of these is going to deliver a different sequence of messages/events to the app. If the app doesn’t handle one or more of the events properly, that could easily cause the problem. Or the app might only handle some of them, relying on OS-default behavior for the others, and either one could have a bug.

    Since you are seeing the problem with TextEdit and the bad behavior seems (by your description) to be more common than the good behavior, I’m inclined to assume that there’s a bug in the OS-default behavior. But without having access to the app’s code and a way to debug it, there’s really no way to know for sure.

    Hence my comments about sending bug reports, along with as much information as you can. Since you now know that filenames with composed diacritics triggers the bug, that may be enough information for Apple (or an app developer) to reproduce/debug/fix/test the problem.

  40. Just out of interest, I have just seen the same behaviour with Music (the Apple app). Dragging the files into the app window works, all files are loaded, dragging them to the icon in the dock only the files with no diacriticals are accepted.

    I think this supports your statement:

    I’m inclined to assume that there’s a bug in the OS-default behavior

    I’ll concoct a bug report …

  41. I finally updated to from the latest MacOS 12 to 13.5.1 and the only problem was that EpsonScan no longer worked. I had earlier had problems when I upgraded to MacOS 12.6.5. This time I went immediately to Epson, searched for upgrades to EpsonScan, and found a new version of EpsonScan2 that works. It’s nice to see Epson is providing upgrades, but it’s odd how that’s the only thing that broke.

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