Archive for November 30, 2021

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Little Annoyances in macOS 12.0.1

Howard Oakley:

These appear to be part of long-standing problems with Apple’s wireless trackpads and keyboards, which can also occasionally result in the doubling of letters and other glitches. Although these have improved to the level of occasional irritants, I can’t understand how Apple’s own devices can’t be used without these bugs getting in the way.


Sadly the answer is that they’re still non-functional. Open the Desktop & Screen Saver pane, select the Screen Saver tab, and then preview the Classic, for example. All I can see is a black screen with the time displayed.


One of the oldest prominent bugs in macOS, which dates back at least eight years to OS X 10.9 if not before, is a flaw in the Finder calculating the width of columns, which I’ve named the Finder column width bug.

The biggest issues for me are:

If we’re talking annoyances, rather than bugs per se, the top of my list would have to be the narrow alerts.


Update (2021-12-03): Tyler Hall:

Just piling on to say that 12.0 is the first time I’ve ever consistently shut down my laptop at the end of each work day because I know that will make tomorrow much more performant and glitch free.

Two more bugs I still run into, carried over from Big Sur:

An annoyance, new in Monterey, is that in the evening, when my Mac’s screen is locked and asleep, it will wake itself up—disturbing me by flashing light all around the room—just to show a notification that it’s entering Do Not Disturb mode.

Nick Heer:

I could pick and choose from the bugs I have filed in the past several months to build a list like these. I seldom find applications outright crashing, but there are plenty of entry-level user interaction problems: in several apps, scroll position is not preserved while using the app or when it is backgrounded; notifications fly in from the bottom edge of the screen when waking my Mac like there is a violent toaster on my desk; Music remains a small tragedy.

In isolation, it would be hard to isolate any of these problems as particularly upsetting or difficult. But they compound. Each one adds unnecessary friction to the tools I use all the time. You can add them all to a list but, for me at least, they multiply my annoyance. From where I am sitting, it is hard to know if these problems are being treated seriously, or if they are falling by the wayside as Apple races to get new features ready in time for WWDC 2022.

Howard Oakley:

There have been a few reports of Macs running recent versions of macOS, particularly 12.0.1, gradually getting slower until they almost grind to a halt. This article suggests a structured way to tackle both diagnosing and dealing with this.

Good tips, but unfortunately they did not lead to a resolution for me. Neither did rebuilding Launch Services.

Bob LeVitus:

Apple released MacOS Monterey (V12.0.1) last week, and my upgrade experience was less than stellar. After three days, I’m still dealing with multiple irritating issues.


When I wake up my Mac, as often as not, my desktop icons have rearranged themselves spontaneously, leaving a jumble of overlapping icons in place of my carefully arranged groups


Another issue I haven’t yet resolved is that my wired keyboard has become unreliable since the upgrade. Characters don’t appear when I type them, sometimes appearing after a long lag and sometimes not appearing at all. It happens with two different wired keyboards and is so irritating that I’m using the built-in MacBook Air keyboard, which I hate.

Colin Cornaby:

While the new MacBook Pro hardware is dreamy, both migrations from my old gear were marred by macOS bugs in Monterey on both ends.

One of my favorites: When Migration Assistant tries to close all the apps on the source Mac end, it it gets held up by an app that won’t close, it just gets stuck in a bad state. You get a back button, but into a “can’t authenticate” state.

Update (2021-12-13): Martin Wierschin:

My own upgrade to Monterey was relatively smooth, but there were some issues. The only potentially critical failure was that Apple Mail did not import all of my emails. Several hundred emails were completely blank and invalid

Geoff Duncan:

One of the things I admire most about macOS is how using a Photos as a source of images for the screensaver has been broken for so long (I think since El Capitan) that nobody even mentions it anymore.

See also: What’s happening with Apple?.

Safari Background Tabs Reactivate

Jeff Johnson (tweet):

The madness in this case is Safari background tabs spontaneously coming to the front again, an obviously undesirable behavior. The initial report was for an obscure (to me) web site in New Zealand, but then I asked around, and someone said it also happened on ESPN, which is not so obscure (to me).


If is called in a Safari background tab with an iframe browsing context, the tab comes to the front.

I’ve definitely seen this one.


Requesting Your Personal Data From Amazon

Nick Heer:

Amazon does not promise to turn around its files nearly as quickly. It says that it can take up to thirty days to create the exported data. When it does become available, you are presented with a list of individual downloads labelled and categorized by function — in mine, there were 57.

And there is no “download all” button.

Oh, and all of the download buttons are not actually direct links to each file, but instead link to an HTML page that fetches the correct download, which means you cannot save the files to a specific folder on your computer.


Are Mac Malware Defenses Changing Again?

Howard Oakley:

Although updates to XProtect’s data files and to MRT always have been irregular, a year ago they occurred quite frequently, with XProtect updates every 7-21 days, and MRT every month or so. As of today, the last XProtect update was pushed on 24 September (version 2151), and there has only been one very minor update to MRT (1.85) since 13 September – a period of over two months.


Whatever is happening, this can only worry those using earlier versions of macOS. For all their limitations, XProtect and MRT have still been providing Macs with valuable malware detection and removal. If malware defences in Monterey are moving away from those tools, and Apple has cut back their maintenance, that leaves Big Sur and earlier worryingly exposed.