Book Updates for High Sierra

Happy Update Day!

macOS High Sierra (10.13) will be released some time tonight. There have already been many articles on many of the new features (or issues) in High Sierra, especially in my Weekly Newsletter. But how does High Sierra affect my books and information therein?

The good news is: surprisingly little. There were many rumors and concerns in the build-up to WWDC this year, but the worst did not happen. I posted about my reaction to the news in WWDC here.

Nevertheless, the tutorials in the books needed to be tested on High Sierra and there were quite a few changes that had accumulated over time so I threw those in as well. The advantage of digital books is if you have already purchased the books (Thank you!) you will get these updates for free in the iBooks Store (you might have to check in the ‘Updates’ tab).

If you don’t have the books yet, you can go and buy them now and get future updates to these books as well!

PR3 is still in review limbo, but should be through soon. (Update: Available now). ‘Packaging 1.5’ is available on the iBooks store already!

If you have already purchased books, all I ask in return for the free update of new information, is to go to the iBooks Store and leave a review. iBooks Store segregates reviews by territory, so every single one of them will be very important for other users to find and evaluate the books.

Thank you!

Some notes on each of the books in particular:

Packaging for Apple Administrators

The basic tools and methods for packaging in High Sierra have not changed. But since I had to go through the book to test all the examples again, I made quite a few minor corrections and clarifications.

Note: The current version of Whitebox Packages, does not run on High Sierra. I believe there will be an update soon, so I did not change the section in the book to reflect that right now.

I also added two entirely new sections: (not dependant on High Sierra)

  • a simple example on how to build Un-Installer scripts, something macOS does not automatically provide.
  • based on this blog post: how to extract a component from a distribution package.

Other than that, Packaging remains very relevant to a Mac Administrator’s skill set with High Sierra, so go and get the book! (and please leave a review)

Property Lists, Preferences and Profile for Apple Adminstrators (PR3)

Note: as mentioned before, PR3 is still in Apple review limbo. I will post as soon as it clears. (Update: it cleared!) If you haven’t bought it yet, you can buy the current version now and will get the update pushed in iBooks, as soon as it clears review!

First, with High Sierra comes Swift 4, which brings a new Property List serialization API. I added new sample code to the Swift section for Swift 4.

Second, the profiles tool comes in a new version in High Sierra, with new syntax and some new functionality. You can see the new command syntax in the man page of the profiles command in High Sierra. (You can also still get the old syntax on High Sierra by calling the man page for profiles.old.)

However, while the old syntax is considered deprecated the new version on High Sierra still supports it. So there is no reason (yet) to run out and change your scripts. Nevertheless, both versions are documented in the relevant section in the book.

There is some new functionality in the new syntax (startup type profiles) and I assume that new features will only added to the new syntax going forward. As long as you still need to support Sierra Macs and older, you will have to use the old syntax or maintain both versions.

And, like the Packaging book, while I was working through the examples in the books, there are many corrections, additions and small clarifications added.

With many interesting new features in MDM, profiles will increase in relevance for adminstrators. Go get the book! (and please leave a review)

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Mac Admin, Consultant, and Author