Leopard Data Loss Bug Easily Fixed, Say Readers

Lora Bentley

It seems analysts aren't the only ones concerned about the bugs in Apple's Leopard operating system. Tom Karpik discovered a data loss bug in the Mac OS X10.5 Finder, and Monday he posted a detailed description thereof -- complete with pictures -- on his Web site.


Here's the short version, straight from Karpik:

Leopard's Finder has a glaring bug in its directory-moving code, leading to horrendous data loss if a destination volume disappears while a move operation is in action. I first came across it when Samba crashed while I was moving a directory from my desktop over to a Samba mount on my FreeBSD server.


I've now run tests on a Windows XP SP2 SMB mount, as well as a local HFS+ formatted USB drive, and the bug surfaces every time the destination disappears while the Finder is moving something to the destination.

Several readers commenting on the post describe their own similar experiences with Leopard, and one even points out that this particular bug is not new. It reportedly first surfaced as early as Panther, Mac OS X 10.3.9.


The obvious workaround, also suggested by readers, is to copy the file to the destination and then delete it from the original location once the copy is complete. If their comments are any indication, some seem rather complex that Mac OS X allows the move function between volumes in the first place. The easiest fix, they say, would be for Apple to do away with that altogether.

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