Me, my life, my interests

Mac OS X Leopard upgrade

I picked up a copy of Apple's Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard on Saturday morning, and set out to upgrade our three Macs in the afternoon. All three installs went without a hitch on our 17" iMac, 15" MacBook Pro and our 13" MacBook. I found this Macworld article helpful in preparing me for my first Mac OS X upgrade experience. For my MacBook Pro, I did the most preparation, by:

  1. Performing a complete data backup
  2. disabling some login items
  3. removing unwanted (or dodgey) preference pane applications
  4. verifying the hard drive
  5. checking application compatibility
  6. checking preference pane application compatibility

For the MacBook, I did a cursory check, and a complete data backup.

For the iMac, I just inserted the disk and upgraded away. There was no data on this anyway - it's all on our ReadyNAS NV+ network storage.

Removed applications

I removed the following from my MacBook Pro after doing a check using Google for Leopard compatibility:

  • efssmartd
  • Application Enhancer, and ClearDock
  • ExtFSManager
  • Flip4MacWMV
  • LockTight
  • DesktopplePro

The following startup items / applications remained:

  • Growl
  • Skype
  • Quicksilver
  • HardwareGrowler
  • iTunesHelper
  • Adium
  • SpanningSync
  • Chronosync
  • Synergy

Based on the reports of the installation hanging after the reboot, I'm glad that I went to this trouble and removed the Application Enhancer app!

There are now some useful articles about application compatibility for Leopard, as well as some that describe some workarounds.

After the upgrade the following applications needed to be reinstalled or reconfigured:

  • Parallels - reinstall
  • Synergy - reinstall and reconfigure (plus fix firewall settings)
  • Skype - reinstall after Skype stopped and wouldn't start again - EDIT: you can get the Skype 2.7 beta via this link at as the 2.6 version seemed to have the problem of stopping and not being able to restart after a period of time.
  • Printers - all my printers disappeared and needed to be reinstalled

The only minor issue that I had with the MacBook Pro, was that the Installation could not find my hard disk... but booting off the DVD allows you to run Disk Utility, which reassured me that it hadn't disappeared, and also let me do another Disk Verification. Once this completed successfully, the install application found the HDD fine.

Upgrade Method and times

Upgrade method

  • iMac - Upgrade
  • MacBook Pro - Archive and Install (preserve User and Network Settings)
  • MacBook - Upgrade


  • iMac - 31 minutes after DVD verified
  • MacBook Pro - 37 minutes after DVD verified (which took 30 minutes
  • MacBook - 47 minutes after DVD verified (which took 33 minutes)

I also had a problem later with the NDAS driver on my iMac that allows me to read the drive in my MediaGate media player connected to my Telly. This driver caused a kernel panic whenever the MediaGate was detected over the network. Restarting in safe mode and uninstalling the driver fixed the issue, but I have not yet attempted to reinstall or find a Leopard compatible version.

Leopard is very impressive - I am very pleased with everything so far.