OS X Mavericks problems that drive me nuts — how about you?
OS X Mavericks has been out since October. Apple wanted to accelerate the uptake of their newest Mac operating system by offering a free update for anyone using Snow Leopard or higher. And millions of us have. Many for better, but some for worse.
Nothing is bug-free, and Mavericks is no exception. But now that it's been out in the world for a few months and already has a maintenance update under its belt, I find there are still some lingering problems that need addressing. I also did a straw poll on Twitter the other day to find out what was bugging other people. I've combined my thoughts and the feedback I got into this list of Mavericks pet peeves, and I'd very much like to hear what you think, so make sure to comment.
Continued e-mail problems and Gmail issues
Despite already having been fixed once, OS X Mavericks' Mail app is still a hot mess. The initial fix was intended to take the sting out of connecting to Gmail accounts, and indeed things did improve for some Gmail users. But many of us still aren't getting messages on time, and have to either quit the app or take Mail offline and then online again before new mail will start streaming in. Some users on Microsoft Exchange servers also report problems that they didn't have with Mountain Lion.
What's more, some Mavericks users are having other problems with Mail too — like getting the darn thing to quit (it'll hang on quit and you have to Force Quit to get it to exit).
All told, Mavericks' Mail app needs some fine tuning before it's working for everyone again.
Quick Look that isn't
Quick Look used to be a great feature that enabled you to quickly view the contents of a file without having to open an application first — you could get a sense of what is in an image, video. or text file just by pressing the space bar in Finder. Quick Look would view the image lickety-split, letting you see at a glance what was in the file.
But many Mavericks users report that Quick Look is very slow now, either taking many seconds longer to open than it used to or "beachballing" all together. It also doesn't seem to support the same file formats as Mountain Lion. Whatever the case, it's very frustrating.
The stupid power button
It used to be that if you pressed the power button your Mac, OS X would ask you if you wanted to shut down, restart or go to sleep. The default action in Mavericks changed, though, so touching the power button now causes the Mac to go to sleep right away. It's only if you hold down the power button for several seconds that you'll get the option to shut down, restart or sleep.
Our own Ally Kazmucha explains that Apple has aligned the Mac's power button to act more like the power button on iOS devices, but it's a change that I find more disruptive than beneficial.
Apple's engineers did a good job of removing skeuomorphism in iOS 7 applications. While some of the design decisions left me scratching my head — are the weird rainbow bubbles in Game Center really that much better than the felt casino tabletop? — you can't argue that at least it makes the user experience a bit more consistent and modern looking than before.
I'm convinced that Apple's UI designers simply ran out of time with Mavericks, because a few of those skeuomorphic embellishments linger — like the felt table in Game Center or the lined paper pad in Reminders. I wish Apple would get rid of them all together because they look anachronistic and patchwork.
Multi monitor support still sucks
I think it's fair to say that multi monitor support before Mavericks was crap, but I'm not altogether certain that Mavericks is a lot better. What Apple did — as a default action — was to give each monitor in Mavericks its own virtual desktop, or in OS X parlance, a Space. That's why you get your own instance of a menu and dock on each separate display.
Unfortunately, the behavior of multi monitor systems isn't entirely predictable. Users report problems with windows and folders popping up on different monitors at random, strange behavior when hooking displays up, and files or folders that occasionally disappear when dragged to the desktop.
Audio drop outs
Core Audio seems kind of screwed up in Mavericks. I get audio drop outs; sometimes no audio at all when I wake my Mac from sleep unless I restart the machine. And if you Google "Mavericks audio problems" you'll get a long list of hits from other folks who are experiencing the same issues. This isn't an insignificant issue — especially for those of us that depend on our Macs to process audio for podcasts, music production and other audio work.
Notifications can't be mapped to helper apps
Notification Center was, on one hand, greatly improved in Mavericks — you can respond to notifications on social media without being taken away from what you're doing. But if you want to get some context for what's going on, clicking on a notification will take you to the web site — Twitter, Facebook and so on.
That's fine if a web interface is all you use, but many of us prefer the added features and functionality of client software. I, for example, use Echofon for most of my Twitter interactions, since it syncs unread messages between its iOS and OS X counterparts.
There's no preference you can set and no other way that I know of to tell Mavericks to open a helper app rather than go to Safari, which inevitably means that I have to go searching for the post, reducing the usefulness of Mavericks notifications all together.
Service Message Block, or SMB, is a commonly used network protocol in the Windows world. SMB is quite commonly used for Network Attached Storage (NAS) devices and other devices, making it a must-have for many small businesses and home networks that rely on some kind of central file storage appliance that's not a full blown file server.
Mavericks, just as with other OS X versions before it, supports the protocol. But midway through Mavericks' development, Apple decided to switch out SMB for the later SMB2 protocol (which, despite what its name implies, is not necessarily an improved version of SMB). That's has caused a lot of users to lose connections to their servers. Yo
You can fix this a couple of different ways (using "cifs://server_name" when using the Connect to Server command from the Finder (command-K) is the easiest way), but you shouldn't have to. It's broken.
Rough smooth scrolling
Mavericks changed the way scrolling worked by drawing parts of the window you haven't seen yet; the goal was more responsive scrolling. And it works in some apps. In others it's broken entirely. 10.9.1 didn't resolve problems that some users had with scrolling in some apps. Here's to hoping the next release irons things out.
Room for improvement
Like I said at the outset, I asked on Twitter for feedback about Mavericks issues. And it's safe to say I was absolutely deluged with responses. So it's quite clear that are Mac users out there that aren't entirely happy with how Mavericks is working for them, but that's not to say it's all bad.
In fact, I still recommend that most people should upgrade to Mavericks if they can, especially if they're using laptops. The improved memory efficiency and power efficiency, tabbed Finder windows, the ability to use Maps and iBooks — there's a lot to love in Mavericks, and you can't beat the price. Just make sure you back up your Mac before you upgrade, and be prepared for a few potholes, because nothing's perfect.
How about you? Have you upgraded to Mavericks? Do you love or hate it? Regret the move? Sound off in the comments.
Get the best of iMore in your inbox, every day!
There were plenty of Douchebags on that thread that attempted to explain Apples great, (it's better for all of us), solution.
Kind of like when my wife is talking to me, I hear here but there are just somethings that I miss. The iCloud with Pages, Keynote, and numbers is a problem. If you want to share it on the cloud. it has to stay there. And unless you make a copy, you have to rely on the cloud to make sure your doc is saved. Not too keen on that. Not too mention, I like to have my OWN copy on my box.
I've also had issues with apps that I use frequently for content creation that crash often now too.
But, hey, what can little ole me do but wait for fixes and carry on until then?
Finder does not use the correct http headers when copying files over webdav, causing most webdav servers to ignore the request.
It's not just that Mac OS X has the issues mentioned above... LOTS of semi-advanced features are missing (Ex. It took me 1 week to find my WiFi's M.A.C address when I first got it!), and anything over that needs the command prompt (Ex. Showing hidden files!). And there is very limited software support. Not to mention Minecraft is pretty much the only game that's supported lol. Apple has pretty much invented GUI in Operating Systems; But then they concentrated on tiny details, leaving huge bugs and features out...
So first things first; I didn't say you need to run a command to find out a MAC address, did I?
As for saying "maybe there's a reason to hide them from users"; Indeed there is a reason they are hidden from users, but quoting from my reply, "LOTS of semi-advanced features are missing". Showing hidden files is an essential feature to many semi-advanced users; Web Developers for example, need to edit .htaccess files, which due to their dot prefix get automatically hidden. Meaning they can't be opened, or uploaded by dragging and dropping.
"there are dozens of free apps to do so (Tinker tool, Onyx, Invisiblix, etc)."
This exact phrase proves my point completely. There are MANY features missing, which in order to gain, you either have to run UNIX commands through the Command Prompt, or get several other applications that will help you do it. I won't comment on the fact that they will, eventually, make your mac unresponsive due to tons of auto starting services, registry, etc, but instead leave it there; "Mac OS X lacks many features". If you would like some examples of features it lacks... Without using the command prompt, or third party software anyway:
- MsConfig, which will allow you to control which services start up when booting your computer. Very useful if you don't want a 20 minute start-up.
- Viewing hidden files, as I mentioned earlier.
- Installing custom drivers for devices.
- Properly uninstalling software (Including AppData, etc)
- Device Manager; Managing a device. I know you can view it's info, but you can't disable it or do any sort of management.
- Etc... Not mention issues with other apple software, like a iTunes' lack of FLAC support...
There is a thread on reddit that has details, and some work-arounds. (was the 3rd link on a google search of "Mavericks quicklook avi"0 I barely even noticed because I have used Plex for the last few years. My 2yr old daughter knows to fire up plex on the iPad, or on the computer to access those videos (on the iPad she uses the most, I have it set to automatically show genre's appropriate for her)
I've had no issues with sound or smooth scrolling.
Gmail, while it's better then it was, it isn't all Apple. Google should have better IMAP support then what they have now. Hitting the power button..
It's a good bet that a good portion of users don't actually restart their computer when they are done, they just close the lid, or hit the power button to put the computer to sleep and walk off to do something else. I can think of a lot of Windows computers that do the same. That's a preference not a problem. Notifications...no problem other then the fact that iMore doesn't have notifications ahem......:)
1. Multiple instances of same sent mail in Sent folder
2. Multiple instances of same deleted file in Trash
3. Frequent instances of Sent mail appearing in Drafts folder after sending, so I have to recheck the file was actually sent.
4. Occasionally stops receiving emails although same emails do appear on iPhone-requires Mail app restart to get new emails
5. Mail app very very very slow to shutdown—this with an archive of some 8000 mails and perhaps 50 in the Inbox
I have tried clean installs of Mavericks on formatted disk and restored/rebuilt Mail databases but the problems never get fixed.
The other Mavericks oddities I can live with but Mail drives me nuts—and I am not using gmail at all.
http://triq.net/articles/mouse-acceleration-preference-pane-mac-os-x I've used default acceleration so long I prefer the default settings (Move your mouse or trackpad quickly, and the mouse moves further, move slowly and it moves more accurately)
Thus it's draining your battery mega fast etc.
1 Click Shutdown from the Menu bar (Menu bar then goes away and nothing else happens)
2 Launch Google Chrome from the Dock. (Launching Google Chrome brings back the Menu bar)
3 Click Shutdown again from the Menu bar and the machine shuts down normally. (This procedure will not work if Google Chrome is currently running when I first click Shutdown, the application must be completely closed) Outside this HUGE bug, some of the listed bugs appear but not all. Mavericks has been out long enough that some of these bugs should have been fixed by now. I'm a little disappointed.
iTunes still plagued by sudden quits and sometimes having to Force Quit.
Messages on Mavericks, completely out of step with the IOS 7 flavour.
I'm a heavy Aperture user and Apple have definitely made it a lot more stable...eventually!
Any advice, downloads or patches out there for us coding-challenged types? I read about deleting "~/Library/Preferences/com.apple.systemuiserver.plist" but my Mac mini doesn't have this preference. Maybe Apple took it out of 10.9.2? Thanks!
P.S. What's Mission Control for, anyway? Something to do with viewing/arranging web sites, screen savers too, but otherwise it's Greek to me.
I did talk to Apple support later about the wifi problems. From posts in other forums I know that other people are having those problems too. But Apple support blamed it on "incompatibility" with my dsl router. I eventually figured out how to get it to work with a static IP address, so now it connects every time.
Regarding the other problems with scrolling not working and some programs locking up, each of those problems are also mentioned in other forums. On the other hand, there may have been a hardware problem. Ended up deciding to stay with Apple, because of the scripting and programming possibilities, and upgraded that Macbook Air to a Macbook Pro, mainly to get better sound quality. But I am still finding things that don't work quit like they should in the Automator program and even in Mail. Again, others are complaining about the same things I am seeing and some of the complaints are over 2 years old with no fix yet. I am going to document these problems and submit reports to Apple. Nothing will get fixed unless Apple knows the problems are being noticed by a lot of people.
Not sure why you say you can't have an email open next to a document. The windows for each program can be sized so you can put email on one side of the screen and some other program next to it on the other side. The email program started out maximized to full screen size the first time I used it. But you can shrink it back to non-full screen, then you can put it next to another program.
You CAN send a link from Safari, its just another one of those hidden keystrokes that seem to be needed all over the place. The huge number of mystery keystrokes needed definitely fits in with this topic of things that drive me nuts - but I suspect some of that was there way before Mavericks. To send a link from Safari, click on the File menu and select Share. As is, it shows "Email this page", which puts the whole web page into the email. But if you hold the shift key down while viewing that menu, "Email this page" changes to "Email link to this page", which is what you are looking for. I am finding there are a lot of things in the menus of many programs that change to something else when you press Shift, Fn, Control, Option, or Command. But you have to try each key to see what happens. There's gotta be a better way. They should either list all of the menu items separately, so you can see each one, or come up with some other way to let you know what secret keystrokes will add more to the menu.