You Must Chill…OS X Screensaver Patch Is All Good

Public Access Software released a patch for the OS X Beta English version screensaver, allowing users to password protect the computer upon screensaver activation and deactivation. Although there were concerns that this patch was applied by directly modifying the OS X source code, Public Access Software insists that there is nothing to worry about. According to Public Access:

In response to published concerns at ResExcellence over my fix for the Mac OS X ScreenSaver I released this past week I am responding with the following information.

The OS X Screen Saver "patch" is not, in any way shape or form, a software code patch.

Cocoa apps have a kind of resource file called a "nib" which contains window/dialogs/menus/graphics/sounds used in the interface portion of the program.

Essentially all the nib contains are descriptions of what a "window" looks like, what behaviors it has and names/labels and some other attributes much like Mac OS resource files.

Also since Cocoa is an object-orientated programming system you link the interface elements to specific code "objects" so that the program responds to the interface in an appropriate operating system-moderated fashion.

When making Mac OS X English, someone apparently made a second copy of the ScreenSaver interface window and saved it in the .nib, but they did not remove the original window which lacked a tab for the password options nor did they hook up the new window to the programis objects.

What I did was modify the preexisting window to show the third tab and the controls and then connected them to the appropriate objects so that they actually worked. That is all.

Absolutely no code was modified anywhere.

Anyone who has used NeXSTEP/OpenStep or done work in Cocoa recognizes a nib file, I apologize if it was not clear that the "patch" was strictly an interface file correction. Actually, in the read me it states that the "patch" replaces the interface component and makes no references to code or behavior modification.

If you do not feel comfortable modifying Mac OS X system software then do not apply the fix.

You can find more information on the OS X Screensaver Patch at the Public Access Software web site.

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