After many beta releases on the Developer Center, Apple has just released OS X Lion 10.7.4 to the masses this afternoon via Software Update. The update weighs in at 729.6MB and fixes the horrible bug in OS X 10.7.3 that stored passwords in plain text, along with many other stability improvements among other things. It also includes Safari 5.1.6. Full release notes:

  • Resolve an issue in which the “Reopen windows when logging back in” setting is always enabled.
  • Improve compatibility with certain British third-party USB keyboards.
  • Addresses permission issues that may be caused if you use the Get Info inspector function “Apply to enclosed items…” on your home directory. For more information, see this article.
  • Improve Internet sharing of PPPoE connections.
  • Improve using a proxy auto-configuration (PAC) file.
  • Address an issue that may prevent files from being saved to an SMB server.
  • Improve printing to an SMB print queue.
  • Improve performance when connecting to a WebDAV server.
  • Enable automatic login for NIS accounts.
  • Include RAW image compatibility for additional digital cameras.
  • Improve the reliability of binding and logging into Active Directory accounts.
  • The OS X Lion v10.7.4 Update includes Safari 5.1.6, which contains stability improvements.

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Apple has continued to release fixes and improvements to Lion, even as it’s worked to get OS X Mountain Lion — the company’s next major OS release — ready for a late summer launch. Mountain Lion brings many features over from iOS, including Notification Center and heavy iCloud integration. Mountain Lion is currently being tested by those apart of Apple’s paid developer program.

Though 10.7.4 comes with Safari 5.1.6, Apple also released Safari 5.1.7 today. Safari 5.1.7 removes “Out-of-date versions of Adobe Flash Player do not include the latest security updates and will be disabled to help keep your Mac secure.” Safari 5.1.7 is available on Apple’s Safari download page, which means it’s possible Apple will post an edited 10.7.4 to include the 5.1.7 update.

Is this the last major Lion update?