Apple's Snow Leopard to sport Cocoa Finder and ImageBoot

Posted:
in macOS edited January 2014
Apple next-generation Snow Leopard operating system will introduce a massive re-write of the Mac OS X Finder and debut a new feature called ImageBoot, AppleInsider has learned.



Cocoa-based Finder



People familiar with matter say the Finder, which currently stands as one of the oldest Carbon-based applications in the Mac OS portfolio, has been completely re-written in the company's native object-oriented application program environment called Cocoa.



Apple has reportedly tapped select members of its developer community to begin testing the updated graphical file system manager as part of a new pre-release copy of Snow Leopard belonging to the build train 10Axxx. In addition, many of the Apple-authored applications accompany the new build are also said to have been wrapped completely in Cocoa.



Microsoft Exchange Support



Other advances are also present in the new test software, such as broader support for Microsoft Exchange 2007 in Snow Leopard's versions of iCal, Address Book and Mail. The implementation of Exchange support remains a work in progress, according to those familiar with the matter. As such, Apple has reportedly asked that developers focus their testing efforts on a subset of Exchange capabilities, such as scheduling events in iCal, adding contacts to Address Book 5.0, and automated account configuration in Mail.



ImageBoot



When it makes its debut, likely at WWDC 2009, Snow Leopard will also introduce a new, third option for disc image-based installation called ImageBoot. Based on Apple's existing NetBoot technology, which allows Macs to boot from a remote disk over the network, ImageBoot will allow users to set up any number of disk images on a secondary partition or external drive, and then selectively boot their system from any one of those disk images at startup.



This new feature will allow users to set up a series of test environments or uniquely configured Mac OS X systems, store the bootable systems as discrete disk images, and subsequently store multiple boot targets on the same disk or partition. Currently, only one bootable Mac OS X installation can be stored on a given disk partition.



With ImageBoot, multiple NetBoot sets can be maintained locally on the same storage partition, and the user can select any one of the disk images available to boot from without having to restore or mount the disk image first. The result is a system that works similar to virtualization software such as Parallels, which can create disk images for different PC operating systems and selectively boot from any of them. The difference is that Mac OS X isn't booting up in a virtual environment; it actually boots a fully native Mac OS X system.



Broader Availability Expected



A little over two weeks ago, AppleInsider noted that Apple was preparing to broaden evaluation of Snow Leopard through software seeds to a limited number of developers. It's now expected that the company's vast developer community, or members of the Apple Developer Connection network, could be added to the mix as early as this weekend.



In June, ArsTechnica's Jacqui Cheng cited sources who suggested that Apple might "eventually wrap everything in Cocoa" with the release of Snow Leopard.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 114
    Aaah, I didn't know that the Finder was Carbon, so now that it is going to be in Cocoa, will it be faster?, hmm, iTunes 8 is half carbon half cocoa rite?
  • Reply 2 of 114
    mactelmactel Posts: 1,275member
    For a major release that was promised to not have many new features Snow Leopard is turning out to be feature packed. The Finder re-write has been asked for since practically day one of OSX's release.



    I'm still holding hope that it will be a free update for Leopard users.
  • Reply 3 of 114
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    ImageBoot



    When it makes its debut next spring, Snow Leopard will also introduce a third option for disc image-based installation called ImageBoot. Based on Apple's local NetBoot technology, the method will let users boot a Mac simply by placing and launching a disc image on any storage partition outside of the primary partition for which they wish to install copies of Mac OS X.



    People familiar with the matter say the technology works through a series of scripts that will convert the disc images to a NetBoot set capable of performing the local install. This will allow users and administrators to share their external drives and partitions with data not associated with their development or testing procedures, those people say.



    Well, Mike Bombich does work at Apple now, so maybe this is an offshoot of NetRestore.
  • Reply 4 of 114
    slewisslewis Posts: 2,080member
    Null.
  • Reply 5 of 114
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by MacTel View Post


    For a major release that was promised to not have many new features Snow Leopard is turning out to be feature packed. The Finder re-write has been asked for since practically day one of OSX's release.



    I'm still holding hope that it will be a free update for Leopard users.



    You can almost bet on price. Probably the standard price to go from 10.4 to 10.5 to 10.6. Don't count on a discount!
  • Reply 6 of 114
    Anybody else sick of having to shell out $150 for a .1 update to OSX?



    It felt like the jump from and Panther to Tiger and Tiger to Leopard were about as big performance-wise as the jump from SP1 to SP2 and SP2 to SP3 on XP, with the main difference being the addition of Time Machine and Exposé. Does that really warrant spending all the money upgrading?



    What bugs me the most is that every year and a half that Apple .1 updates OSX, the new OSX isn't compatable with a lot of existing software (see ProTools, etc), but new software frequently requires the new OS version...



    I'd be more than willing to pay $300-400 once every 6 years like the Windows model (instead of $150 every year and a half-2 years) and get the updates/new features for free, especially since the change in philosophy would force Apple to make the compatibility transitions smoother and not penalize folks who upgrade/don't upgrade...



    Just a thought. Maybe the grass is always greener, and I do admit that Apple's model allows the company to generate extra hype on a more regular basis (although CocoaFinder and ImageBoot aren't really much to get excited about for the average user...)



    I realize this mail exposes me to the potential to a ridiculous number of flames, which really aren't necessary, so please, put away your negative crayons.
  • Reply 7 of 114
    asciiascii Posts: 5,941member
    If they have rewritten Finder in Cocoa, I wonder have they made a framework for "Sidebar apps".



    With the use of the blue sidebar in Finder, iTunes, Mail, iPhoto I have thought it would make sense to make an XCode template/framework for these kinds of apps.
  • Reply 8 of 114
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by riversky View Post


    You can almost bet on price. Probably the standard price to go from 10.4 to 10.5 to 10.6. Don't count on a discount!



    I agree that it will cost the same as any other major release and I also think that they should charge for it.
  • Reply 9 of 114
    boogabooga Posts: 1,077member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by wheelhot View Post


    so now that it is going to be in Cocoa, will it be faster?



    No. In general, rewriting things in Cocoa makes them slower because of dynamic binding and less optimization opportunities for the engine. However, because Apple has much more expertise in Cocoa and it integrates better into the latest frameworks, it's probably still the right move. If they're going to be creating a platform on which to build new capabilities, it's better to be on a technology and toolchain everyone's familiar with.
  • Reply 10 of 114
    hattighattig Posts: 830member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Superbass View Post


    Anybody else sick of having to shell out $150 for a .1 update to OSX?



    It felt like the jump from and Panther to Tiger and Tiger to Leopard were about as big performance-wise as the jump from SP1 to SP2 and SP2 to SP3 on XP, with the main difference being the addition of Time Machine and Exposé. Does that really warrant spending all the money upgrading?



    Thank your lucky stars that you get performance increases with the .1 updates. XP certainly didn't do that with each service pack slowing down the system.



    The .1 updates have given a lot of new features with each release. That is what you pay for! Features!
  • Reply 11 of 114
    slewisslewis Posts: 2,080member
    Null.
  • Reply 12 of 114
    I bet in typical Apple fashion its still single threaded so a sluggish connection to a file server makes the whole Finder look as if its hung
  • Reply 13 of 114
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Superbass View Post


    It felt like the jump from and Panther to Tiger and Tiger to Leopard were about as big performance-wise as the jump from SP1 to SP2 and SP2 to SP3 on XP, with the main difference being the addition of Time Machine and Exposé. Does that really warrant spending all the money upgrading?



    This was good for a laff and a haff.



    The way I remember it, didn't new releases of OS X pack enough punch to cause MicroSoft to completely go back to the drawing board and delay Vista for like..... years?
  • Reply 14 of 114
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Superbass View Post


    Anybody else sick of having to shell out $150 for a .1 update to OSX?



    It felt like the jump from and Panther to Tiger and Tiger to Leopard were about as big performance-wise as the jump from SP1 to SP2 and SP2 to SP3 on XP, with the main difference being the addition of Time Machine and Exposé. Does that really warrant spending all the money upgrading?



    What bugs me the most is that every year and a half that Apple .1 updates OSX, the new OSX isn't compatable with a lot of existing software (see ProTools, etc), but new software frequently requires the new OS version...



    I'd be more than willing to pay $300-400 once every 6 years like the Windows model (instead of $150 every year and a half-2 years) and get the updates/new features for free, especially since the change in philosophy would force Apple to make the compatibility transitions smoother and not penalize folks who upgrade/don't upgrade...





    Not a flame, but perhaps an explanation...I think Apple would have a harder time convincing someone to shell out $450 to purchase the latest greatest in the middle or towards the end of a 6 year cycle. Nothin' wrong with paying $130 every 1.5-2 years in my mind...
  • Reply 15 of 114
    For those that asked for some kind of warning that Apple would remove FireWire, here is your warning (and there have been a few previous already) that Carbon is on the way out.
  • Reply 16 of 114
    slewisslewis Posts: 2,080member
    Null.
  • Reply 17 of 114
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Superbass View Post


    I realize this mail exposes me to the potential to a ridiculous number of flames, which really aren't necessary, so please, put away your negative crayons.



    If you don't want to get flamed then you shouldn't post flame bait.
  • Reply 18 of 114
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Superbass View Post


    Anybody else sick of having to shell out $150 for a .1 update to OSX?...



    Not really disagreeing with you, but a minor point to think of is that the cost of OS-X has remained fairly low relative to MS operating systems.



    Really rough figures here but ... most consumer goods in North America have been rising at a rate of about 50% every five years or so. OS-X has gone up about 20% in that same time frame. ($129 to $159)



    Edit: it's still $129 in most areas it seems so no rise at all i guess.



    Another point is that the reason you only pay MS $600 every five years is that it takes them that long to make an OS.



    Personally, I think Apple should lower the price to something like 99 bucks. It's getting to the point where it's more advantageous to get folks to upgrade their systems than it is to price it out of their reach. Because Snow Leopard will, on the surface, appear hardly different than Leopard, it's possible that Apple might take this opportunity to lower the price further.



    Final point:

    "Windows 7" will really be "Windows 6.1" and it will be released very soon. it will be interesting to see if it also comes in 18 different versions and costs hundreds and hundreds of bucks.
  • Reply 19 of 114
    No personal offence slewis, but ...



    I must say that I find your giant sig with the advertisement for roughly drafted forum in it to be highly obnoxious.



    You might notice that almost no one else on the forum has a sig, and that a sig with an advertisement/link in it is kind of poor netiquette (if anyone cares about netiquette anymore).
  • Reply 20 of 114
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by wordwise View Post


    Not a flame, but perhaps an explanation...I think Apple would have a harder time convincing someone to shell out $450 to purchase the latest greatest in the middle or towards the end of a 6 year cycle. Nothin' wrong with paying $130 every 1.5-2 years in my mind...



    I agree with you 100%. Many compared the 1st gen iPhone as cheaper in the long run to the iPhone 3G that cost less up front but paid itself back and then a bit in the end, and long how that's going. iPhone sales through the glass ceiling the first model created. Granted, new tech added to sales, but I'm sure inital price was a major factor.



    OS X at $129 every 1.5-2 years is still a better deal initially than Windows OS at $400 every... um do they even have a regular release schedule? No they don't. So it could be $400 every 6 years, 5 years, 4 years? Less?



    Who cares! I'd pay more for OS X than Windows any day. Paying it in installments is only an added feature in my book.
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