Monthly Archives: February 2011

First look: Full System Encryption in Mac OS X 10.7 “Lion”

One of the most valuable changes in Mac OS X 10.7 “Lion” is a complete overhaul of FileVault, Apple’s disk encryption system for protecting private data such as stored pictures, emails, documents and home movies.

In Mac OS X 10.4 and 10.5, FileVault could only be used to encrypt the “home folder” for each user, and it was widely criticized for a number of implementation flaws and security issues.

With 10.7 “Lion”, Apple intends to solve some of these flaws and significantly enhance security and privacy by turning FileVault into a disk level encryption system, not only for the main filesystem, but also for any external drive a user wants to protect with encryption.

While Apple is not the first to implement full system encryption, anyone running 10.7 will be able to use it, compared to Windows where an Ultimate or Enterprise edition of the operating system is needed to enable Microsoft’s system encryption feature called BitLocker (Truecrypt is a free alternative). Read more

Share this post: Share this article on Facebook Share this Article on Twitter Add this Article to Stumbleupon Add this Article to Del.icio.us Add this Article to Digg Add this Article to Reddit Add this Article to Newsvine
Posted in Apple Software | Tagged , , , , | 16 Responses

Is Thunderbolt the next iDevice “Dock” connection?

Thunderbolt port. Credit: Mac 4 Ever

Thunderbolt port. Credit: Mac 4 Ever

Rumors have been circulating for the last few weeks that Apple would add a Lightpeak port to the next iPad, with most people dismissing the idea as being too soon or just plain unnecessary.

However, given the newly revealed Thunderbolt connection that will debut on the next Macbook Pro, due out sometime soon, is it possible Apple plans to use it as a replacement for the Dock connector found on every iPhone and iPad?

If it sounds like overkill, consider the following:

At various times in the past and even in current iDevices, the Dock connector has been used for

  • Connecting to something via USB to sync and charge
  • Connecting to something via Firewire to sync and charge
  • Connecting peripheral USB devices using the Camera Connection kit
  • Output of composite video
  • Output of component video
  • Output of a VGA signal (using the VGA adapter for the iPad)
  • External control of music playback using the Apple Accessory Protocol
  • Connection to 3rd party peripherals
  • Output of a line level audio signal

Quite a list of jobs for a tiny connector on a portable device, no? Read more

Share this post: Share this article on Facebook Share this Article on Twitter Add this Article to Stumbleupon Add this Article to Del.icio.us Add this Article to Digg Add this Article to Reddit Add this Article to Newsvine
Posted in Apple Hardware | Tagged , , , , | 7 Responses

Next Macbook Pro to feature “Thunderbolt” port for high speed I/O

Apple’s Macbook Pro line is due for a refresh soon, particularly since the base 13″ model is still using the older Core 2 Duo processor because of chipset and GPU constraints.

Pictures have surfaced from French Mac site Mac 4 Ever showing what appears to be a Mini DisplayPort with a thunderbolt next to it:

In addition the site posted what appears to be a product package for an unreleased Macbook featuring the Thunderbolt icon, calling it “High Speed I/O”

Fscklog has also posted a shot of what appears to be the back panel of the same product packaging, again listing Thunderbolt as a High Speed I/O port:

The new 13″ Macbook Pro will use the Intel Core i5 processor along with Intel’s chipset, which means it will also have to use Intel’s integrated graphics instead of the Nvidia solution used before. Read more

Share this post: Share this article on Facebook Share this Article on Twitter Add this Article to Stumbleupon Add this Article to Del.icio.us Add this Article to Digg Add this Article to Reddit Add this Article to Newsvine
Posted in Apple Hardware | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Apple schedules iPad event for March 2nd

The Loop is reporting that Apple has sent invitations out for an Apple Event next Wednesday, March 2nd:

According to the invitation received by The Loop, the event will be held at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts at 10:00 am. This is the same venue Apple has used to introduce a number of products in recent years.

While it’s obvious that this event is primarily about the new iPad, we’re certain that Apple will also say something about the recently unveiled subscription billing policy that many developers, publishers and tech journalists feel is going to harm the iOS ecosystem in the long run.

The iPad 2 is rumored to be a performance boosting upgrade, with more RAM and a faster ARM processor, but it’s also likely they’ll bump the flash storage capacity of each model as well, with the base model starting at 32GB. Read more

Share this post: Share this article on Facebook Share this Article on Twitter Add this Article to Stumbleupon Add this Article to Del.icio.us Add this Article to Digg Add this Article to Reddit Add this Article to Newsvine
Posted in Apple Events, Apple Hardware, Apple Software | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

AT&T increases data cap for tethering customers to 4GB

AT&T logo

AT&T logo

In a move that is almost certainly a response to Verizon’s data plan offerings for the iPhone, AT&T announced that as of February 13th, it would begin including an extra 2GB of data allowance per month for users who pay for the optional $20 tethering plan on top of the $25 DataPro 2GB plan.

The change allows tethering plan customers to use a total of 4GB per month regardless of which device uses that data.

Previously, AT&T’s data tethering “plan” was really more of a fee to un-cripple the tethering feature most smart phones already have, as AT&T refused to offer any additional data allowance to users paying a premium for the feature.

If you’re an AT&T iPhone owner, you’ve probably noticed that the Internet Tethering area of Settings just tells you to contact AT&T if you aren’t paying for the tethering plan. Read more

Share this post: Share this article on Facebook Share this Article on Twitter Add this Article to Stumbleupon Add this Article to Del.icio.us Add this Article to Digg Add this Article to Reddit Add this Article to Newsvine
Posted in Apple Hardware | Tagged , , , | 1 Response

Subscription billing comes to the App Store

While today marks the release of The Daily, the first newspaper designed specifically for the iPad, it actually marks a much more significant shift for Apple’s iOS platform. The Daily is also the first iOS App to feature native subscription billing, integrated with the iTunes store just like the in-app purchases that have been around since iOS 3.x was released back in 2009.

Apple updated the iTunes store terms and conditions just a short while ago with some of the finer details of how it all works.

Subscription terms and conditions

Subscription terms and conditions

Like most content in the iTunes Store, and like most Apps in the App store, subscription content sales are final, and there are no refunds.

Once you authorize the subscription, it will automatically bill you 24 hours before the next subscription period starts. Read more

Share this post: Share this article on Facebook Share this Article on Twitter Add this Article to Stumbleupon Add this Article to Del.icio.us Add this Article to Digg Add this Article to Reddit Add this Article to Newsvine
Posted in 3rd Party Software, App Store | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment