Apple Announces System 7.5 Update 2.0 System Software
New Version Offers Improved Stability, Performance
Cupertino, California--March 11, 1996-- Following a close collaboration with Apple customers and developers, Apple Computer, Inc., today announced the availability of System 7.5 Update 2.0, a new Mac OS system software update designed to significantly enhance overall system stability while delivering some performance improvements for Apple Macintosh and Mac OS-compatible computers. System 7.5 Update 2.0 also updates major system features and technologies for network communications and multimedia and further enhances Apple's leadership in innovative easy-to-use technologies.
"This software release is a prime example of how Apple's close relationships with our customers and developers can benefit product development," said Jim Gable, senior director of system software product marketing at Apple Computer, Inc. "With the delivery of System 7.5 Update 2.0, Apple has improved stability and performance while maintaining the seamless software integration consistently recognized as a distinguishing attribute of the Macintosh operating system."
"Microsoft worked closely with Apple on the System 7.5 Update 2.0 release," said Dave Meltzer, group product manager for Macintosh applications at Microsoft. "We're delighted with the improvements our Office customers will experience as a result of this collaboration, including reduced launch time and enhanced stability. We look forward to continuing our work with Apple and are committed to developing great applications for the platform."
System 7.5 Update 2.0 gives customers a one-step, easy solution to update all of their Macintosh computers running versions 7.5, 7.5.1 or 7.5.2 of System 7.5, including the PCI-based Power Macintosh computers, and bring them up to the latest version of the Mac OS--System 7.5.3. In addition, System 7.5 Update 2.0 enables support professionals to create one System folder that can boot any Macintosh. This capability makes it much easier to support large installations with a broad range of Macintosh systems, from the Macintosh Plus to the most recent Power Macintosh computers.
In addition to stability improvements, Apple's new System 7.5 Update 2.0 delivers performance improvements and other enhancements, which include: more PowerPC-native components such as the Resource Manager, SCSI Manager and Serial DMA; the elimination of some causes of Type 11 errors on Power Macintosh systems; retention of comments in the "Get Info" window after rebuilding the desktop; and detailed documentation provided on the contents of the System Folder, Control Panels folder and Extensions folder.
Open Transport 1.1 System 7.5 Update 2.0 offers new capabilities to Apple's networked users with the integration of Open Transport 1.1, the modern standards-based networking and communications system for Mac OS. Open Transport 1.0 began shipping in 1995 as a standard feature of Apple's PCI-based Power Macintosh systems. With version 1.1, Open Transport now supports most 68030, 68040, and additional PowerPC based systems. Version 1.1 expands choices for network interface options, adding support for existing NuBus-based Network Interface Cards and many SCSI-based network adapters, new PCI-based token ring adapters, and, on select Macintosh models, infrared and PCMCIA-based network connections. Open Transport 1.1 has also been optimized to allow networking applications to take advantage of new, higher speed datalinks such as fast Ethernet, FDDI, and ATM.
For network managers, Open Transport 1.1 simplifies deployment and configuration of network software, allowing use of Open Transport on almost all Apple systems. New configuration utilities for AppleTalk and TCP/IP allow multiple network configurations to be stored on the same computer. For Macintosh computers capable of running both classic and Open Transport networking, System 7.5 Update 2.0 will install both types of networking software, however only one is enabled at a time. Included with the system update is a Network Software Selector utility to allow customers to easily select which networking software to use as the default on a given computer.
Apple has put Open Transport 1.1 through extensive customer and developer beta seeding programs culminating with a public beta seed on the Internet. Apple customers are pleased with the progress in improved performance, ease-of-use, and compatibility delivered by Open Transport 1.1.
"I've been running Open Transport 1.1 beta releases for three months and have had zero problems with it. It's considerably faster than classic networking with existing applications," said Rusty Pasini, AppleTalk network administrator with GMSI at the National Science Foundation. "I can't wait for new products that take even more advantage of it's full potential. I can't stress enough how much I like the improved interface of the AppleTalk and TCP/IP configuration utilities."
To network users, Open Transport 1.1 offers online help, based on Apple Guide technology, to make it easier for an individual to hook up to a network, with fewer demands on network managers and support resources. Home users will also enjoy the increased support for SLIP/PPP software, used to communicate with the Internet via modems. And Internet customers that have been using MacTCP will now see an improvement in networking performance, even via modems.
For developers, the integration of Open Transport 1.1 in System 7.5 Update 2.0 increases opportunities for new classes of software that take advantage of Open Transport's new features. Examples of this include products that require IP Multicast support--as used by technologies such as QuickTime TV, recently featured in Apple's GRAMMY webcast on the Internet. Support for server applications in this release creates new opportunities for developers delivering server products with the need for high-performance networking. Optimizations to support 100mb networking will further help those developers with Fast Ethernet, FDDI and ATM products.
Key Technologies Updated Other key technologies updated in System 7.5 Update 2.0 include: QuickTime, QuickDraw GX, QuickDraw 3D, Apple Guide, PlainTalk, Desktop Printing and PowerTalk.
QuickTime is the multi-platform standard used by multimedia software tool vendors and content creators to store, edit and play synchronized graphics, sound, video, text and music in multimedia applications and on the Internet. Version 2.1 provides developers with a high-performance sprite engine, with all sprite images stored as QuickTime compressed images. A 256-color format has been added to Cinepak, enabling high-quality video playback without any color remapping. This version supports the Apple MPEG Media System, providing expanded MPEG support for multimedia developers.
QuickDraw GX advances graphics and printing with drag-and-drop printing from the desktop, various ways to print and view any document regardless of the application, greater typography control and improved color management. QuickDraw GX 1.1.3 includes support for the Color StyleWriter Pro driver as well as performance improvements for color ink-jet printers.
PlainTalk is a collection of software that enables your Macintosh to speak written text and respond to spoken commands. With version 1.4.1, English Text-to-Speech now runs on all Macintosh computers. Included with the update are English Text-to-Speech, Mexican Spanish Text-to Speech, and English Speech Recognition.
QuickDraw 3D allows a Macintosh to display three-dimensional graphics, using applications designed to take advantage of QuickDraw 3D. Version 1.0.3 provides better memory management, and is available online or with the CD-ROM update kit in the CD Extras folder.
Apple Guide, a unique feature of the Mac OS, helps you solve a problem without interrupting the task at hand. Apple Guide prompts you with visual, step-by-step directions, until the needed process is completed. With Version 2.0.2, you now have the capability to print Apple Guide documents.
Desktop Printing gives customers who are not running QuickDraw GX the Desktop Printing feature. Once this feature is installed, icons on the desktop are created to represent printer drivers. Desktop printer icons allow you to switch between drivers without going to the Chooser. With Desktop Printing 1.0.3, customers who are running System 7.5 can select this as an alternative to Print Monitor, and use drag and drop printing.
With PowerTalk version 1.2.3, DigiSign Digital Signature technology is now separate from PowerTalk. This capability is accessible through a Custom Install option in the PowerTalk 1.2.3 Installer. Included online and with the CD-ROM version of the update are several Starnine PowerTalk gateways for access to Internet mail, Starnine Mail, and C.E. Software's QuickMail.
Pricing and Availability
System 7.5 Update 2.0 will be distributed electronically at no additional charge via the following Apple Internet sites: ftp.support.apple.com, ftp.info.apple.com, http://www.support.apple.com, http://www.info.apple.com, and Apple Computer Higher Education gopher server (info.hed.apple.com). The system update also will be posted on several online services including: AppleLink, America Online, and CompuServe. Customers who do not have access to an online service or the Internet can order the update on CD-ROM or floppies in the U.S. for a $13 shipping and handling fee. The number to call in the United States to order the update is 1-800-293-6617, ext. 984. The number to call in Canada to order the update is 1-800-361-6075. Localized versions of the system update will be available to international customers in many countries by the end of the second quarter of 1996. Apple also plans to update the Macintosh System 7.5 retail upgrade package to incorporate the improvements in System 7.5 Update 2.0 by the end of the second quarter of 1996 in the U.S.
System 7.5 Update 2.0 is one of the mechanisms by which Open Transport will be made available to customers. In addition, an Open Transport retail package will be released later this year to support customers with System 7.1, 7.1.1 or 7.1.2 as well as System 7.5.3. Customers who have MacTCP or system software maintenance agreements will receive a free update to Open Transport 1.1.
Apple Computer, Inc., a recognized innovator in the information industry and leader in multimedia technologies, creates powerful solutions based on easy-to-use personal computers, servers, peripherals, software, online services, and personal digital assistants. Headquartered in Cupertino, California, Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) develops, manufactures, licenses and markets solutions, products, technologies and services for business, education, consumer, entertainment, scientific & engineering and government customers in over 140 countries.
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