Apple releases Safari 5.1.7

Accompanying today’s updates for OS X Lion client and server, Apple has released a number of other updates for its supported operating systems and OS X software.

The first is a security update for Snow Leopard, which applies similar security updates for its components that were applied to Lion in the OS X 10.7.4 update. Apple has a knowledgebase page on the security details of this update, but as of this writing the page is not loading from the Apple support site.

In addition to the Operating System updates, Apple has made available updates to its popular software packages. The most notable of these is its Safari Web browser, which received asmall version bump to 5.1.7 to tackle a few bugs and address some security vulnerabilities in its WebKit rendering engine. According to the updater’s Web page, the following features are key changes to the browser:

  • Improve the browser’s responsiveness when the system is low on memory
  • Fix an issue that could prevent Web pages from responding after using a pinch to zoom gesture
  • Fix an issue that could affect Web sites using forms to authenticate users
  • Disable versions of Adobe Flash Player that do not include the latest security updates and provide the option to get the current version from Adobe’s Web site.

The primary detail here is Apple’s attention to the security regarding Adobe Flash Player, where the browser will now disable the plug-in when a new version is available from Adobe, to ensure that users stay up-to-date and are not kept vulnerable to security holes in older versions of the software. While some people might still wish to run older versions of the Flash plug-in, this should be a beneficial step for most people.

Beyond Safari, Apple has made available another update to its Remote Desktop client softwareand its Server Admin Tools, which both are integrated with the services of Apple’s operating systems and generally are updated along with the Mac OS in order to maintain version compatibility.

All of these and other relevant updates for your system should be available via Software Update (found in the Apple menu), so be sure to check there for any applicable updates for your system. As always, be sure you have a full backup of your system (use Apple’s Time Machine feature to do this) before you install any software updates.

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