Security researcher rewrites Mac firmware over Thunderbolt, says most Intel Thunderbolt Macs vulnerable

firmware

A security researcher speaking at the Chaos Computer Congress in Hamburg demonstrated a hack that rewrites an Intel Mac’s firmware using a Thunderbolt device with attack code in an option ROM. Known as Thunderstrike, the proof of concept presented by Trammel Hudson infects the Apple Extensible Firmware Interface (EFI) in a way he claims cannot be detected, nor removed by reinstalling OS X.

Since the boot ROM is independent of the operating system, reinstallation of OS X will not remove it. Nor does it depend on anything stored on the disk, so replacing the harddrive has no effect. A hardware in-system-programming device is the only way to restore the stock firmware.

Apple has already implemented an intended fix in the latest Mac mini and iMac with Retina display, which Hudson says will soon be available for other Macs, but appears at this stage to provide only partial protection…  Read more

Jeremy’s holiday gift guide: Mac, iPhone & iPad gear you can trust

Holiday Gift Guide 5My first post for 9to5Mac is on a topic near and dear to my heart: best-of-breed Apple products and accessories. Why should you trust me? I’ve been a professional product reviewer for 23 years and an Apple user for 28 years. Last week, I finished an 11-year stint running the editorial side of iLounge, the leading Apple product review site, where I tested literally thousands of Apple accessories from every major company on the planet. Readers have praised my reviews as accurate and insightful, and I always put my readers’ needs first when testing new products.

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Hyper’s Black Friday: $50 off the world’s only external MacBook battery, $10 battery packs (Reg. $50), $2 iPad cases (Reg. $30), much more

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Hyper, the brand behind a number of popular Mac and iOS products we’ve reviewed in the past, is today offering its best deals ever for Black Friday. The sale includes big deals on external battery packs and other iOS accessories including the world’s only external MacBook battery.

Some of the notables: A $10 3600 mAh battery pack (Reg. $49), a $20 7200mAh battery pack (Reg. $70), and up to $50 off the company’s external battery for MacBooks. Head below for the full list of deals.  Read more

Last chance to get a Retina iMac for the holiday nears as ship times hit 2-3 weeks

Retina 5K iMac ship times

When Apple announced the first 27-inch Retina 5K iMac at its special event last month, its new super high resolution desktop computer became available for purchase online that same day. Ship times for the Retina 5K iMac have since steadily slipped from 3-5 days to 7-10 days. With Black Friday and the holidays quickly approaching, though, the shipment promise for the Retina 4K iMac has stretched out to 2-3 weeks when ordering directly from Apple… Read more

KGI: iPad Pro pushed back again to Q2 2015, Q1 to see under 10M iPads shipped

KGI-ipad-pro-12-inch-launch

The latest report from KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo claims Apple will delay its expected launch of a 12.9 (or 12.2)-inch iPad ‘Pro’ as it predicts a 50% decline for iPad shipments heading into next year. Specifically, KGI thinks Apple will sell just under 10 million units in Q1 2015 following a busy holiday season in the last quarter of this year. That would be a 54.5% drop from quarter to quarter with KGI predicting 21 million iPad units sold during the Q4 2014 Holiday quarter: Read more

The tl;dr version of early iMac with Retina 5K display reviews is TAKE MY MONEY [Review roundup]

retina-imac-review

The early reviews are out for the iMac with Retina 5K display, and the tl;dr version is: if you can afford it, buy it.

Everyone of course agrees that the key market for the machine is video professionals (beating even the base-model Mac Pro in benchmarks), the 5K resolution offering the ability to display full-size 4K video while still leaving enough room for editing tools.

But while the new iMac may be overkill for more mundane tasks, reviewers also agreed that the display is so good that even if you don’t need one, you’ll still want one …  Read more

Mac mini teardowns are underway, with good news and bad news

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iFixit and MacminiVault have both completed their teardowns of the new Mac mini, with Macminicolo planning theirs soon.

We already knew the main bad news: soldered RAM means you can’t upgrade the memory later, so you have to decide how much you want and pay Apple’s pricing for it. Both iFixit and MacminiVault described replacing the RAM as “impossible.”

Getting access to the inside of the new Mac mini is more difficult than it used to be …  Read more

2011 MacBook Pro GPU complaints not going away as petition reaches 18k signatures

gpu

Update: Repair Extension Program…

Long-standing complaints that the 2011 MacBook Pro suffered from a manufacturing fault resulting in GPU glitches and failures don’t appear to be going away, as an online petition calling for Apple to fix or replace affected machines reaches more than 18,000 signatures.

To:
Timothy D. Cook, Apple Inc
Craig Federighi (Apple Inc) (Apple Inc), Apple Inc

Replace or Fix All 2011 Macbook Pro with Graphics Failure

The petition notes the premium spent to buy Apple laptops, and says that Apple’s only response to date has been to ask owners to pay for an extremely expensive logic board replacement …  Read more

Analysts remain positive about AAPL following event, focused on iPhone and Apple Pay

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While the relatively modest iPad updates might have led to a flurry of ‘Apple is doomed’ reports from analysts, an early roundup by Fortune suggests that the consensus view so far remains positive. Most are rating it a buy or overweight – meaning they expect it to outperform typical stocks – with the majority setting a target price in the $112-120 range …

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Recap: Everything you need to know about iPad Air 2, iPad mini 3, and iMac with Retina 5K display (Video)

Apple

Apple’s latest keynote was full of announcements for iPad and Mac enthusiasts. Apple has finally unveiled its second generation iPad Air, a slightly revised iPad mini, and the long rumored iMac with Retina display. Apple’s keynote went on for about 90 minutes, but in case you didn’t have time to sit through the entire thing, we’ve put together a recap to get you up to speed…

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Apple announces 27-inch iMac with Retina 5K display starting at $2499, 5120×2880 screen resolution

Screen Shot 2014-10-16 at 19.07.05

Apple has just announced a brand-new Retina 27-inch iMac. Apple is spreading Retina displays across the lineup, with the iMac leading that charge. This is the highest resolution screen in the world, according to Apple, with 14.7 million pixels. This is a 5K display — more than seven times the pixels of a HDTV. The screen builds on the technology Apple built on the iPhone and iPad, but to a whole new scale.

The iMac is just 5mm at its thinnest point, maintaining the same thinness as the previous generation, despite the massive leap in pixel density.

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