Thursday, July 16, 2020 [Tweets] [Favorites]

macOS 10.15.6

Apple (also: MacRumors, Mr. Macintosh, Howard Oakley):

macOS Catalina 10.15.6 introduces local news in your Today feed in Apple News and improves the security and reliability of your Mac.

Unlike macOS 10.15.5, this does include a new version of Apple Mail. However, it’s not yet clear to me whether it fixes the data loss bug from macOS 10.15.0 where messages disappear when you move them. One user who had been frequently seeing the problem says that it stopped occurring some time ago—after the previous update but before this one—perhaps due to a change on Apple’s iCloud mail server. However, I would still like to see a fix in Mail itself because the bug also affected Gmail and other servers.

I have heard that some users are still seeing the bug from 10.15.0 where rules don’t move incoming messages to another mailbox automatically, only when manually applying the rules.

Update (2020-07-16): I received another report that iCloud messages no longer disappear. I also received a report that the bug with rules copying Gmail messages instead of moving them is fixed. I’m still not sure whether the data loss bug is fixed for non-iCloud servers.

Update (2020-07-20): One user reports Exchange messages disappearing when moved, although he’s not sure whether it’s due to a server problem or Apple Mail.

Update (2020-08-03): I’ve received several other reports of messages disappearing when moving them.


Update (2020-07-27): Mr. Macintosh:

The softwareupdate --ignore flag was changed to include some changes that we asked for!

Erik Schwiebert:

PSA: beware of MacOS [10.15.5] if you have any non-ASCII characters in your apps’ entitlement.plist files (even if they are HTML-encoded with &#...;). Late changes to the codesign tool error on them at signing time.

Juli Clover:

macOS Catalina 10.15.6 successfully fixes a frustrating bug that prevented some USB 2.0 accessories from working properly with 2020 MacBook Air and MacBook Pro models, according to MacRumors readers and users on Reddit.

Ole Begemann:

macOS 10.15.6 understands Big Sur’s APFS volume format. And apparently parallel installs of Catalina and Big Sur into the same APFS container are now supported (though I haven’t tried this).


Update (2020-07-29): Tanner Bennett:

You can only use the --ignore flag “as long as the Mac is enrolled in Apple School Manager, Apple Business Manager or a User Approved MDM”?



Great news if true. However I switched to Postbox (which has its own issues) since Mail's classic interface has gotten so much worse in 10.15.

@Matt The good news is that Mail’s classic interface gets better in 11.0.

Still not migrating, but steeling myself for the transition, just archived and nuked 12,000 emails. Never would have had to do this prior to Catalina.

I wasn’t serious about email archiving or the possibility of data loss prior to Catalina. *GROAN*

@Michael that's great news! I have the Beta installed. I should try it on an account I don't care about.

In the interests of moving on and "taking one for the team" this Crapalina refuser installed Catalina on my only two older Macs: an i5 Mini with a 500GB OWC SSD, and a stock late-2013 MBP. Both maxed out to 16GB of Ram. Both cloned with Carbon Copy Cloner before attempting this folly.

Since I read at Macintouch that the migration tool was uh, "sub-optimal" these were straight upgrades from USB stick. I had concerns:

- Did they fix the mail data loss bug? 5 years of 12K emails archived later, I would find out.

- Would Music pooch my iTunes Library of ... 10+ years worth of songs and remixes, many with Chinese or Japanese named files?

Bottom line: No major issues. Some minor bugs, and every security tool I used with Mojave came thru with only one upgrade, Patrick Wardle's BlockBlock, which is now version 1.

Horror stories about "too many dialogs" were mostly mitigated, most permissions came over from Mojave. 1-2 Screen Recording and more than a few Notification perms later... what's good?

- The Finder is snappy, Mojave would wheeze on external hard disk file lists, Cata-Finder just lists them. Even on my i5 fileserver Mini, snappy.

- Home app is nice when it works. On the i7 it's great, on the i5 it shows my HomePods as "No Response" -- no problems from my iOS devices or the MBP.

- The toys that matter: Turbo Boost Switcher Pro, AdGuard macOS, BlockBlock, LittleSnitch, Keyboard Maestro, Hazel, Alfred, Entangler, Script Debugger all seem to work very well in Catalina.

- No data loss either. Mail came thru on the MBP, the Mojave bug of "Rules must be fired manually" is still there on Catalina, no big. Music gobbled my humongous Library and did not break any links to external drives. Good.

If you do this BACK UP and use a cloner like Carbon Copy Cloner. If any Apple people are reading this you'd better make Mike Bombich's life EXTREMELY EASY.

Grudging respect to Apple: they finally got most of it right. Next time, don't ship with data loss bugs as I have names reserved for " if you get it wrong. German: "Berg Große Scheiße" and for Japanese, a play on a folktale: かちかちうんこ山

Don't make me hashtag these Tim Apple. Because I will.

Grudging respect to Apple: they finally got most of it right. Next time, don’t ship with data loss bugs

Yeah, for most people, Catalina seems to have taken way too long to become reliable. About as bad as Lion.

I still have some issues (though I’m still on 10.15.5, because… I haven’t wanted to touch it just yet?). Today saw another instance of windows being moved to impossible positions: every single Safari window had its title bar outside of the screen, with a vertical coordinate way below zero. This kind of bug seems new to Catalina (maybe not?) — it gets very confused with multiple displays. I also often see Mission Control showing me windows whose sheet is clearly way outside the proper coordinates of a particular screen.

AirPlay is still unreliable for me. No idea if it was better in Mojave; I only recently got this speaker. Maybe it’s the speaker? I don’t know. It’s a mess.

Michael, I've been following your commentary re Apple Mail failing to sync exchange messages and losing messages. This bug caused me massive grief. Apple Support kept blaming Microsoft. I lost hundreds of mission critical emails. But as you note above, the problem seems to have disappeared, I think prior to the latest update. Apart from the fact that arguably the most important app on the platform didn't work correctly for months, the fact that apple never acknowledges it and then covertly addresses it is very disturbing. Thanks for your work and take care.

@Harvey I’m still hearing of Exchange users losing messages, although in all recent cases they seem to think it was caused by their mail server rather than Apple Mail. It’s old message at rest that were lost, not ones that the user was moving. I wish there were a way to get a clear answer. (Apple never replied to my bug reports.)

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