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the bug in the apple

the background:

As an artist I chose an apple computer mainly on Apple's selling point of Photoshop speeds. Several years since the purchase of my computer it has become evident that I have reached the limitations of what my programs & peripheral devices have to offer.

I require 2 things:

a/ a wacom tablet (which comes with MetaCretions' Painter)

b/ Newtek's 3d application Lightwave.

To run either one of these applications I would require either an ADB (apple desktop bus) connector or USB (universal serial bus) connector.

Unless my machine can accommodate USB ports I would have to buy older versions of both a Wacom Tablet and Newtek Lightwave which would be compatible with my older machine which only came with ADB connectors.

On or about 14 November 2001 I spoke by telephone to A* of My Mac Apple Centre in Melbourne.

I could accommodate USB ports by buying a "PCI" expansion card. Also, the new Apple OS would provide me with drivers to run the ports (or alternately the Apple website provided drivers for my current OS of 8.6 if I chose not to upgrade).
Therefore I would be able to buy a new tablet and a newer version of Lightwave. It made sense that we upgrade our software so that we would not be constrained in future purchases..........

Thus on Sunday 18 November 2001:

a/  purchased Mac OS X, only so I could run OS 9.2.1. (I do not have the HD space to install OS X);
b/  purchased replacement RAM chips required to run Lightwave;
c/  purchased a Macally PCI to USB adapter:

The Macally is: "Fully compatible with Mac USB OHCI specification" and the "USB Drivers Licensed from and copyright by Apple Computer INc. ©1998 Apple Computer, Inc." (quoted from the specifications on the box).

The RAM, USB ports and the OS 9.2.1 were installed on the day, 18 November 2001. This is when my problems began. The computer's manual sleep function would cause the computer to freeze, requiring a forced restart. The screenshot function did not work (I found out that it spasmodically worked when done a certain way).

The Case Against Apple Part 1, 2001

Email to Apple USA:

This is just to let you know that I have made my complaint to the ACCC in Australia regarding your
deceptive trading practices.

The ACCC is the Competition Regulator here in Australia.

The last company prosecuted here for deceptive trading practices was Target. They were fined millions$, and now every
television advertisement by law has to audibly state its exemptions/exclusions.

We purchased the OS x with 9.2.1 . We had, and still have, no intention of installing OS X as we don't have a single
application that is run by it. So we simply installed OS 9.2.1, because we were misled by Apple & its representative that it is updated OS software for the Macintosh which can replace older software.

We assumed, wrongly, that it would run all previous applications, e.g. Photoshop, Flash, Bryce, etc., and devices, e.g.
zips, scanners, tablets, etc.

OS 9.2.1 has bugs, OBVIOUS BUGS.

Apple in Sydney told me that it does not have bugs, that instead it must be.... something else, the PCI expansion card for USB ports (purchased on the same day as we purchased replacement ram, OS X, Intuos tablet, Appleworks). This is a nonsense. The USB ports can be run on OS 8.6 from drivers available off the Apple site. To say OS 9.2.1 doesn't have to run them & that they are therefore the problem is simply an attempt of absolving Apple of the shortcomings of its product, or  more importantly deceptive trading practices. I doubt that the usb ports are the problem. OS 9.2.1  is bugged. (But even if the usb port were the problem that would still mean that OS 9.2.1 is bugged, since OS 8.6. can run them!) [*although I have since discovered that OS 8.6 has "sleep" problems since the USB driver, available from the Apple site, was installed. It is the Apple driver which causes the problem ......Apple software! The new OS, 9.2.1, simply replaces the older seperate drivers. Therefore it is Apple's shortcomming. It is evident that Apple provides itself a disingenious out in fulfilling its legal warranty obligations!]


I would not have bought a Macintosh computer at all if I knew it was only intended to work with the software and devices it came with [limited to  Apple products which excludes, for instance, internally installed zip-drives] and not capable of being upgraded in the future!  Does anyone at Apple think anyone would buy Apple products [when all the machine is intended to perform is that it be switched on and off]?

Attached find my letter to, amongst other bodies, the ACCC:

I am writing to complain about the unethical trading practices of Apple Computers.

New Apple Macitnosh-compatible devices all now use usb ports. New scanners, printers, zip drives, etc., all connect with usb ports.

I purchased an expansion card, which has usb ports to allow me to use new devices (e.g. a tablet to do graphics/art). "Expansion Ports" were already built into my computer for this.

On their website Apple have driver updates to allow users with older software (like my 8.6) to run devices from usb ports.

I wanted to buy new software e.g. a 3d program called Lightwave, used in film special effects. Newer lightwave versions run on Mac OS 9 or later. So I purchased new Apple software 9 days ago. I only wanted to upgrade to OS 9, but, as this is not sold by itself I had to buy OS X which has 9.2.1. (serial no Z 691-3212-A, registered with Apple).

Well, OS 9.2.1 is bugged. Apple won't acknowledge this. My computer cannot be put to sleep manually. It now freezes every time I try. I cannot take screen-shots either*. I do not know what other bugs await either, as I've done over 5 clean installs on my computer and not had time to actually do anything creative with it!

I've had to resort to the earlier OS, 8.6 to regain these functions.... To see whether it was a hardware problem I had to initialize my hard drive, making all the data zeros, loosing everything on it, to then install the original 8.5 & then upgrade that to 8.6 [as per telephone instructions by an apple technician]. The functions which do not work on OS 9.2.1 NOW DO WORK on both earlier OSs. When I then upgraded again to OS9.2.1 I again lost those functions...  I started from scratch again, re-initialising the HD & installing the old software!

Apple tech's advice:

a/it could be the ram chips I replaced (two 32 ram chips were replaced with two 128 chips).  But the system OS 8.5 & 8.6 still carry out these functions with the extra RAM;

b/ it could be the PCI expansion card I purchased with USB ports (my beige machine did not come with USB ports). Apple claim that these ports might be causing problems because they are third-party products!

The problem with this is: 8.6 functions, and has drivers to run these ports (available from the Apple site) without a problem. OS 9.2.1 is problematic. OS 9.2.1, I am advised, does not have to run these ports!!

They want me to remove the PCI USB expansion card to test OS 9.2.1 without the card.

The problem is why should I do that? If OS 9.2.1 does not support USB ports, then I want a refund on the software, or that Apple debug their software to actually run the usb ports.

All new Apple-compatible products use usb. And if OS 9.2.1 does not have to run usb ports which work on OS 8.6 then the company is trading unethically in a way that is designed to make users, like me, discard my fully functional machine to buy a brand new one!

Apple refuse to acknowledge that their software is bugged & have told me that unless I take out the USB ports then it is my hardware (the usb ports) installed in-shop (MyMac, Melbourne) that "could be" the problem!!! I've already initialised my HD 3 times, & haven't as yet even had a chance to reinstall my applications lost in doing so (e.g.: photoshop, bryce, imageready, fireworks, flash, poser, correl photopaint, amorphium, interarchy...etc). I've wasted a good 8 hours every day for the past 9 days to try & get the system to work properly.

All programs that I have run on versions of my software OR LATER, that is they are designed to run on all new Apple software. According to Apple that is not their concern - it means that I have to buy a new machine anytime I buy new software for every time they make an upgrade!

This is truly bizarre.

* to take a screenshot on a Mac you hit apple>shift>3. The numbers on the numbers panel (right on the  keyboard) do not work at all. The three above the letter "e" works, but it takes around 8 hits to activate a screenshot.

regards, demetrios vakras

PS.These functions might work in "Classic", but to use "Classic" I then have to install OSX. I don't want OSX because I have not got a single piece of software that is run by X! [And,  OSX takes up 1 gig of HD space.. which is all I have left. It won't fit!]

As we registered this software with Apple on the same day as the installation, we have 90 days worth of over-the-phone assistance. I phoned their telephone number: 133 622 > option 2 > option 3, case number: 133272. I spoke to a Mark Lai. The above advice is his and his supervisor's. Apple Australia's address is: 16 Rodborough Road, Frenchs Forest 2086

Text in square brakets, [], is aditional to what I sent Apple. Interestingly, Apple have since removed the USB driver from their website!!!!!!!!  Apple, it is evident, can create software intended to run devices (e.g. the USB driver), but if Apple can't make it actually work without it disrupting other functions of the computer, blame the customer or a third party!!!
5 December 2001. ]

The Case Against Apple, Part 2, 1999

This was on my website from September 1999 until circa. April 2000. This version was last revised October 1999.  Apple have been trading deceptively for a long time:

"problems with apple...

If you require a computer for the creation of graphics you will eventually run out of hard drive space to store the images.

Thus, on the 6th of August this year [1999], I purchased an [additional] hard drive and had it installed internally shortly afterwards. It did not work properly...

[This drive was not automatically mounted by the computer when the system would boot-up. Utilities would not mount it either. It was initialised and re-intialised more times than I care to remember. If the machine ran for around half an hour the hard drive sometimes mounted. However, the files would not open. Error messages would state they were either "truncated" or "corrupt".]

On September 28 it was returned and I was refunded [by the reseller]. Apple (& their representatives) never managed to make it work.

According to Peter Green, of Apple Australia in Frenchs Forest Sydney, Apple does not guarantee that Apple will run any third party devices even if the fault is not with the device! Apples are guaranteed only to run Apple products. Apple does not make printers, scanners, hard drives, zip drives, jazz drives, etc. and does not guarantee that they will ever run any of these devices!

I wasted more time resolving the problems caused by extending the HD than any time savings made running Photoshop on an Apple!
Thus consider what you buy carefully. Had I known any of this I would have instead purchased a PC!

I now do have a functional externally installed hard drive extension, no thanks to Apple.

Demetrios Vakras. 21 October 1999."


1/ All of my hardware and software was 6-7 months old at the time and all purchased on the basis that Apple computers would run them.

2/ I returned the extension HD to the seller for a refund, even though it was not the problem. It was not Apple who refunded me. Indeed, I would rather have had Apple refund me on all my computer equipment (e.g.: CPU, non-Apple monitor, non-Apple scanner, non-Apple printer, & programs like Photoshop) so I could have instead bought an IBM PC along with PC-compatible devices and software. It is because I had peripherals and software of greater value than the Apple computer which are useless on a Microsoft-run IBM that I was compelled to stay with Apple;

3/ the CPU has 2 scsi cards, one internal the other external. The new HD was installed on the internal scsi. The Apple techs insisted that both are separate and that it should have worked. Two separate HDs were installed internally but neither one worked properly;

4/ a PC tech acquaintance sold me an EXTERNAL HD extension - this works without a problem! The problem therefore was always Apple's - how its system handled (or rather did not handle) the internally installed device.



The OS 9.2.1 has a Macintosh Edition Explorer update to Explorer 5. It looks great...however it mutilates Flash sites, which Macintosh Edition Explorer 4.5 did not:

 Explorer 4.5 - normal

Explorer 5 -with multiples as a result of scrolling.

Macintosh Edition Explorer 5 looks great....... but when scrolling a Flash site it simply shows multiples.....with different parts of the page overlying others, which would not be so problematic except that the links go to the underlying parts covered by the multiplied images which the refresh button does nothing to resolve. Simply, the Flash site does not work in (the Mac edition) Explorer 5! (I have no idea, how the site works on the PC equivalent: PC edition Explorer 5.5)

On OS 9.2.1 I could not take a screenshot! The screenshots above were taken after I reverted to OS 8.6.

One further bug in the OS 9.2.1 was the way it altered the behaviour of Netscape Composer, which is my main web editing tool. When editing the urls to images placed in a row, e.g.:

previous url

return url
next url

editing one would edit all, despite only having one image selected. To change the url on only one of the images one had to place a number of spaces (html="br&nbsp")... Could one conclude that OS 9.2.1 was nothing more than an exercise where function was sacrificed to appearance, where Apple have only "got away with it" because they break the law? In Australia, no company has the right to limit what are our "statutory warranties". A company's "voluntary warranties" cannot override ANY warranties available under law. "Natalie" from Apple Australia Head Office in Sydney advised, by telephone (20/12/2001), that their exclusions and exemptions overrode any statutory rights we had. Since we had opened the package we have waived our right to a refund. In Australia Apple's position is illegal. We could only have found out about the product's shortcomings by installing it. Apple is in breach of Australian law.