Solipsism Gradient

Rainer Brockerhoff’s blog

Browsing Posts published by Rainer Brockerhoff

If you’re using Quay, please check out the release notes and install this new version as soon as possible.

Note that older versions of Quay will break on Mountain Lion, giving you a persistent error message. Sorry about that, but the installation should be painless. Quay is now signed with my Developer ID for Gatekeeper compliance. And with RB App Checker Lite this is easy to verify. 😉

That said, I’m hard at work to get new stuff out in time for Mountain Lion (rumors say that will be sometime between July 19 and 31). Details are still fluid but I’ll post them here as soon as I get the basic functions working reliably.

My main concern is keeping my promise of upgrading paid users of Quay and XRay to the new stuff. This is unfortunately impossible with the Mac App Store, but not all utilities will be there, so i still think it’s going to work out.

Update: while this runs fine on 10.8 in my tests here, it may not behave well on the new Retina display (remember this was originally coded for 10.5!). I’ll try to do some tests tomorrow.

Update 2: OK, tests show it’s not Retina-compatible, so I’ve uploaded a new build with the “Open in Low Resolution” option checked. My apologies for the oversight. It’s not at all clear – looking at the source – how I could make it compatible both with high-resolution and 10.6.8 on short notice. And it’s still a 32-bit application, too.

Summing up: Quay is getting elderly and this update is, really, only for current users who like it. Don’t expect it to be updated again. But, as I said above, cool new stuff will soon be out. Suggestions welcome!

RB App Checker Lite 1.0.1 (187) has just gone live on the Mac App Store, and the corresponding Developer ID-signed build (186) is now available for direct download.

In the last month, almost exactly 1000 copies have been downloaded from the Mac App Store, and about 300 copies have been downloaded directly from my site. Not bad; the download curve shows the usual decaying exponential shape, but it is decaying much more slowly than I thought it would. And this with no marketing except for Twitter and a single press release.

Since both versions are free, I suppose that the main reason for users preferring the MAS version is the ease of updating; the direct-download version doesn’t have automatic updating, nor is it cost-effective to have it now. The popular Sparkle framework is over double the size of the entire application, and does much more than I need. When a non-MAS RB Utility comes out, it will have automatic updating, and that will automatically appear in all direct-download RB Utilities; a benefit of using a common app framework.

Update: here’s a common use scenario for RB App Checker Lite: an automatic updater starts and requests your administrator password. Is this safe? Easy to check:

  • Command-click on the updater’s icon in the Dock; this will show the updater’s icon in the Finder;
  • Right-click on this icon and select the “RB App Checker Lite ” service;
  • RB App Checker Lite’s results should tell you if the updater can be trusted or not. Be especially wary of unsigned or self-signed updaters that ask for your admin password, unless you’re really sure!

Back again…

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…and you probably hadn’t realized I was away. Well, we spent 10 days away in Chile (more precisely, the Atacama Desert) and Bolivia (Salar de Uyuni). Here’s our updated world map (61 countries):

Briefly, it was tiring and cold but the landscapes were worth it.

Now back to the old drawing board; a bug-fix update to RB App Checker Lite should be out tomorrow, I hope. Stay tuned.

Now in the MAS!

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Yesterday evening RB App Checker Lite was approved for sale in the Mac App Store. Whew; it’s been a difficult couple of weeks, but it’s done. Now to relearn my php-fu and do a better product page, and of course restart work on other apps in the RB Utilities suite. Next in queue are “RB File Counter”, “RB File Alias” and the non-lite version of RB App Checker.



News on the RB App Checker Lite front. Version 1.0 (179) is out; check the product page for release notes.

The previously published version was 1.0 (171) – note I’m just incrementing the build number for now, this is mostly for keeping this version in sync with the one submitted to the Mac App Store.

Speaking of the MAS, my first submission was finally rejected for a bug with Services registration (after 7 days “Waiting for Review”, which is not too bad). So I’ll be resubmitting tonight, with that bug hopefully solved, and several new others fixed and new features added.

The most interesting new feature is checking for embedded provisioning profiles.  iOS apps will always have one, but you normally won’t see such a thing in a Mac application. However, both .xcarchives and apps “built for archiving” will have an embedded profile (unless you’re signing with your Developer ID).

Feedback welcome!

Update I: ehrm, make that version 1.0 (181). Only the icon has changed; Apple objected to my using the “generic application” icon as part of my own.

Update II: yes, the new icon is just a stopgap, will be redoing the details in the next build.

RB App Checker Lite is now functionally complete and I decided to simultaneously publish the 1.0 version here – it’s free – and on the Mac App Store. In the “About Box” the version appears as 1.0 (171).

If you already have one of the public betas somewhere on your hard drive, better remove it before unzipping this version – otherwise the Services Manager may become confused about the correct version to run.

One interesting new feature is that you now can run RB App Checker Lite on Xcode archives (.xcarchive bundles). This will also work for iOS archives, by the way.

I’m still working on more and better documentation and perhaps some sample screenshots on the product page. I suppose I also should add a new support forum.

Regarding the Mac App Store version, before actual review there still seems to be some problem regarding developer profiles and certificates — somewhat ironical for this specific application! Still, this being my first submission to any of the App Stores, it’s to be expected. Stay tuned for news.

It took more time than I thought, but here’s the second public beta for RB App Checker Lite.

The UI looks better, the text is zoomable, it parses in-app purchase receipts, and many bugs have been fixed. It will also run on the 10.8 developer preview 2. Please check out the product page for details.

As before, this beta will run for 60 days from today (build day). Still missing:

  • Printing (well, it works but not well)
  • Better help text
  • Online updating

Please send feedback! There’s a convenient “Email the Developer” menu item in the Help menu just for that.

Inspired by my recent musings about OS X 10.8 – specifically, the need for a way to check application signatures – I’m releasing the first public beta of RB App Checker Lite. Please follow the link to download.

RB App Checker Lite will be an easy way for anyone to check any executable – application, command-line tool or framework – for signatures. Also, for an app downloaded from the Mac App Store, it will show you the receipt and check everything for validity.

This is also the first of my forthcoming RB Utilities application suite. Here’s the application icon:

The icon series was designed by Sérgio Bergocce. The cube will be common to all applications, my logo is of course on the left, and the right-hand side will symbolize what each app does; the colors will try to symbolize price and geekiness level. 🙂 In this case, light blue alludes to the “Lite” part, and of course that means the application will be free.

I’ll try to distribute all free utilities over both the Mac App Store and my own site; non-free utilities are intended to be MAS-only, if possible. The ultimate intention is to substitute my very old XRay utility by a group of small, focused programs. More on that later…

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