From Mavericks back to Mountain Lion: so much for that plan

Summary:Mavericks refuses to talk to my NAS even with work-arounds. That's a deal-killer. So it's back to Mountain Lion for now. Share my pain and read along.

For those of you following along on my adventure to push the limits of an iMac , I have some bad news.

Mavericks kinda sucks. You betcha!

osx-mountain-lion
OS X Mountain Lion

What?? I'm the political columnist here, too. Do you seriously think I'd be able to resist one small "you betcha" for an OS called Mavericks when it all goes kaplooey? No way. It's a gag just beggin' to be played. Anyway, back to the story.

When I got the Mac last week, I immediately updated it to Mavericks. I gotta say, I complained last week that the Mac shipped with Mountain Lion, not Mavericks, but now I'm rather relieved it did.

Even so, I wanted (nay, needed!) the ability for Mavericks to use an AirPlay receiver as an external monitor. That would get me my four monitors.

That part worked, and worked wonderfully. It's the only part that worked well, however.

All of my data is stored on NAS devices, and I must-must-must be able to access them via SMB. Having read Steven's article on work-arounds to the Mavericks's SMB2 bug , I was convinced all would be good. I followed his instructions to the letter.

All was not good.

First, the tank (what we call our huge NAS array) would show up in Mavericks and then go away. You'd click on its name, and it would vanish. You couldn't log out, or log back in. I even deleted the key chain elements and still I was scrod.

I could connect to the tank from other Macs (running Mountain Lion) without any problem and have been able to since Mountain Lion came out. This was definitely Mavericks.

Second, the iMac kept eating my external USB3 hard drive. It tested perfectly on other Macs, but corrupted the drive on the Mavericks machine.

I had great display access, but I just couldn't get to my data. In other words, if I didn't need to work on my main work machine, it would have been fine.

Fortunately, I used Carbon Copy Cloner to make a clone and recovery volume of Mountain Lion before I started. I had this... feeeeling.

So, I deallocated the Creative Cloud registration, deallocated my copy of Mac Office, and am crossing my fingers that I can migrate my Parallels license back to Mountain Lion like their support page implies.

The machine tells me that I've got 50 minutes before it's able to restart with Mountain Lion, so cross your fingers, too.

Oh, and I did have two ideas for the fourth display. Apparently DisplayLink works fine with Mountain Lion. So I'll try that as my way to talk to the fourth display. The sad point? I really liked having Apple TV available and the monitor I'm connecting to only has one HDMI port. On the other hand, AirParrot claims to do what Mavericks did by extending the display to an AirPlay device, so for ten bucks, I'll give that a try, too.

Sigh. Apple, fix Mavericks, will ya?

Update: It took about two hours, but I'm now back on Mountain Lion and everything is much better. As for the fourth monitor, I've downloaded a trial of AirParrot and it works, so I'll pony up the ten bucks sometime tomorrow when I get a chance. By the way, for those of you wondering how I back-revved so quickly, it was because I made a USB key with the recovery partition for Mountain Lion (and then deleted the main Mac partition), so the recovery would install.

Topics: Apple

About

In addition to hosting the ZDNet Government and ZDNet DIY-IT blogs, CBS Interactive's Distinguished Lecturer David Gewirtz is an author, U.S. policy advisor and computer scientist. He is featured in The History Channel special The President's Book of Secrets, is one of America's foremost cyber-security experts, and is a top expert on savi... Full Bio

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