Things have been relatively quiet here at the blog, but not because I've just been enjoying listening to records.

Rather, we've been working on a series of fixes that we're releasing today as SuperDuper v3.6.

This release is especially important for Apple silicon users. macOS 12.3 will break SuperDuper! v3.5 due to problems with asr (Apple Software Restore), the tool that must be used to copy the OS, and we've worked around that issue in our new update.

I'm Sure I've Used #blessed Before

On Big Sur and later, as I've written before, asr must be used to produce a bootable copy. We can update everything but the OS with Smart Update, but if the OS needs to be copied, we need to use asr to do it.

As part of its operation, asr blesses the copy. That basically means it does the final steps necessary to set the drive up for boot.

Under Big Sur and later, however, that's not sufficient: the copy has to be authorized for boot, which is done either with the Startup Disk Preference Pane (if it appears there, which it sometimes doesn't) or via the "boot choice" menu at start (which is accessed during startup via Option on Intel Macs, or by holding down Power on Apple Silicon Macs).

On macOS 12.3, a change in bless breaks asr, and it returns an error, which causes SuperDuper! v3.5 to fail the copy. (At this point, everything's been copied, and no data will be lost, but a scary red bar appears, often followed by a change of underwear, a support email, and a request for dry cleaning reimbursement.)

We've changed SuperDuper! to work around this problem, and as long as you've updated to v3.6, things should work fine.

Better, Even!

But that's not all. We've also improved performance, especially when cleaning up folders with fewer files in them during Smart Update; updated our handling of "Cloud" files on Monterey; fixed a crash with new-style serial numbers on macOS versions before 10.14; worked around some security prompts when running from non-Admin accounts...a list of all the updates is in the release notes, as usual.

Status Report

As I'm sure you've noticed, the status bar in an active phase is, well, blue-on-blue. Over the years, Apple has changed both the size and color of their progress bar control so that it's become closer and closer to our color.

When the window is active, that means there's minimal contrast. When inactive, though, it's quite visible...which I often joke is a subtle hint to not watch the pot boil.

We didn't want to create our own control here, since we'd constantly be chasing Apple's visual updates. In the past we've tried applying a hue filter to the control, but that caused some older Macs to crash, and since we support the OS a long way back, and a lot of old Macs, that proved to be unworkable.

And yes, we could change our bar color, but since Apple keeps changing their color, that isn't a good choice either.

All is not lost, though. You can change the color to suit your taste: in System Preferences's General section, the Highlight or Accent selection changes the control color. So, if it bothers you, there you go—go crazy and choose a bar color of your own!

Wake Up!

As I wrote before, if you get a "Resource Busy" error during an Erase, then copy error under Big Sur and later, it's likely your Mac fell asleep during the copy, even though we asked it to stay awake (and even if it looks like it didn't). You can usually fix this by installing Coca from the App Store (it's free!) and using it to keep the Mac awake during this process. Ensure you "Activate" it using its menu extra.

Wrap Up

We've been quite happy with the way SuperDuper! v3.5 has been working in the field, with lots of good feedback, and this version should take care of the few issues we've found.

Thanks to everyone who's using it, and who has written in. Until next time, back to the code mines (which I think is a Pretenders song)!