How To

Everything you want to know about Mac OS 9.1 and then some.
By Ralph Fairweather
Post from the 2- pop QuickTime 5.0 Preview board


Just my 2 bytes here to help us keep our terminology and our upgrade strategies straight. I took the plunge and have just downloaded the OS 9.1 Update and installed it (after duplicating my 9.0.4 System Folder and Deblessing it, so I can easily revert, of course!) The OS 9.1 Update experience seems to vary, depending on whether you have installed the QT 5.0 updater or not. This is what I see so far:

The version of QT that comes in OS 9.1 is QT 4.1.2, just like OS 9.0.4. There really is no such thing as "QT 4.1.3." QT versions are known by the version number of the "Quicktime" extension itself, and there is no "QT 4.1.3," even though some people may refer to the OS 9.1 version of QT 4.1.2 (with the QT DV Update 4.1.3 - below), as QT 4.1.3 as a kind of shorthand.

I personally don't want to use the term QT 4.1.3, because it may confuse people, and because I it hurts my old QA Engineer's ears to hear it called that. Maybe for shorthand we could call it QT-DV 4.1.3, what do ya think?

OS 9.1 DOES install a NEW extension called QT DV Update 4.1.3, as well as QT 4.1.2. This extension contains the latest released version of the NEW QT DV codec, and is said by some to be a slightly improved version of the new DV codec compared to the one that comes embedded within the QT 5.0 Preview 2 extension (labeled QT v5.0a13c8), especially in terms of render speed. I haven't tried it yet, tho.

As well, OS 9.1 installs FW 2.7, whereas OS 9.0.4 only has FW 2.4. Feedback on FW 2.7 so far is good.

A wrinkle comes in if you have installed QT 5.0p2. From my initial testing, if you have QT 5.0 preview installed, the OS 9.1 installer doesn't install any new QT extensions, because the version numbers of the QT 5.0 stuff are higher, and installers are programmed to not overwrite newer extensions, in terms of version numbers. Therefore, you don't get the QT DV Update 4.1.3, if you just blindly try to install OS 9.1 over QT 5.0.

Also, if you install QT 5.0p2, it looks to me like you get QT DV Enabler and Support 2.2.2f5, which are newer than the QT DV 2.2 extensions that come in the OS 9.1 installer. In my experience, you always want the highest released version number available for the QT DV pieces, in that they are hand crafted with care by smart engineers especially for FCP and other DV NLE apps and devices.

That is, QT DV 2.2.2f5 would generally speaking contain better stuff specifically for FCP and device control than QT DV 2.2. But I haven't tested anything, so I don't really know.

If I were a working video pro, instead of a video-website hack, I would probably want to run with QT 4.1.2 and QT DV Update 4.1.3 instead of QT 5.0p2, because all the other stuff in QT 5.0, which will someday be great stuff, is still alpha-ish, and possibly buggy. With the release of OS 9.1, you no longer need QT 5 to get the new Apple DV codec - now best of breed. You probably do want to install JUST the QT FireWire DV pieces, under Custom Install, from the QT 5.0p2 installer, however.

So, if I wanted to run with what is looking like the best set-up-to-date, I would update to OS 9.1, and run with QT 4.1.2 and the new DV codec in QT DV Update 4.1.3, and FW 2.7 and QT DV 2.2.2f5. I would:

1) OPTIONAL: Duplicate my existing System Folder, and Debless it by dragging the piece called "System" into a New Folder called "Debless" with my duplicated System Folder. That way, I can revert to my existing System in an emergency, by dragging the "System" piece out of the Debless folder to the top level of my System folder, trashing the OS 9.1 folder, and restarting.

1) OPTIONAL: Duplicate my existing Extensions folder, and drag it out of my System Folder to a new location, for reference, and so I could easily revert one or two extensions if for some reason I needed to;

2) MANDATORY: if I had installed QT 5.0, I would drag all QT related extensions to the trash,

3) I would install the OS 9.1 Updater,

4) I would then launch the QT 5.0p2 installer, hit Custom install, and select only the QT Firewire DV choice.

I would then check inside my extensions folder to make sure I had the FW 2.7 extensions , the QT DV Update 4.1.3 extension , the QT DV 2.2.2f5 extensions , and QT 4.1.2 and QT PowerPlug 4.1.2 .

Then, I would launch FCP and play. If I had not yet updated to FCP 1.2.5, I would do that last.

Remember, the Apple FCP website still certifies ONLY OS 9.0.4 and the release version of QT 4.1.2 with FCP 1.2.5, so you are on your own. Be sure to back up all projects, and make a dupe of your existing System Folder and Debless it, before trying anything. Or, make yourself a bootable repair CD, with your existing system on it.

I didn't have anything to lose in my OS 9.1 update, because I just run a wayward website these days and don't have any interesting projects going. Boo hoo.

Good luck, and let us know how it all works.


Mac OS 9.1 Update

copyright © Ralph Fairweather 2001

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