"Shellshock" Threat, and the Apple Update


honestone

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Are all of you familiar with the recent "Shellshock" issue with Mac OS X and Linux systems? This actually was revealed last week, and although for the vast, vast majority of Mac users, it was not an issue, still any "hole" in the Mac OS is not good. Here is a link describing the issue, along with the announcement of the update released by Apple two days ago:

http://arstechnica.com/apple/2014/09/apple-patches-shellshock-bash-bug-in-os-x

Also, there are 3 such updates available, depending on whether one uses Lion, Mountain Lion, or Mavericks. Here is a link to www.macupdate.com that has the download for Mavericks, but at the bottom of that screen, one can click on, and then download, the updates for the two earlier OSs:

http://www.macupdate.com/app/mac/52249/apple-os-x-bash-update
 
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Alan Cahill

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I have an imac with mavericks installed. It has been running fine for months. This week I installed the apple released patch for shellshock for mavericks. My computer now freezes on startup and I am left with a grey screen. Can someone give me some advice?
 

honestone

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I installed the patch on both my Mac Mini and Mac Book Air, both running Mavericks 10.9.5, and I have no issues at all. Did you make a bootable backup before you installed the patch? If so, then you can recover from it.

By the way, from the link I provided, the patch requires OS 10.9.5 or later.

Can you attach the iMac in Target Disk mode with another Mac? If you can, then you could try and analyze the boot drive on the iMac with some tools. Disk Utility could help, but you might need something more robust, like Disk Warrior or Tech Tool Pro. Also, maybe try and re-install the OS 10.9.5 Updater. That could get you back to the pre-Shellshock install.
 
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oldscribe

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Hi Alan,

Have you done a full shutdown and restart without any peripherals connected?
Start by turning your Mac off. You will need to press and hold your Mac's power button to force your Mac to shut down. Disconnect all of the peripherals, except the mouse and keyboard, now restart in safe mode. If all is well then restart normally. If not use disk utility / first aid,

Let us know results.

EDIT:
Have to say installed update on both MacBooks and no issues.
 
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Alan Cahill

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Thanks guys, I appreciate your help. I disconnected my peripherals and booted up in Safe Mode. It ran it's version of disk utility and successfully booted up. I have since restarted twice as a regular startup and in both cases it started up fine. Getting it to perform an internal diagnostic seems to have done the trick, fingers crossed. Once again, my thanks.
 
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honestone

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Great news, Alan! oldscribe's advice was right on!

Just to confirm, are you running OS 10.9.5? And, is that what you were using prior to applying the patch?
 

Alan Cahill

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Nah guys I spoke too soon. I went to play World of Warcraft, it then froze. Never done that before. I restarted the computer and it froze again on startup leaving a grey screen and 2-3 faint vertical white lines. I performed a safe boot again with peripherals disconnected and it started up ok. When I performed a regular restart again it went back to freezing on startup. It seems that it starts up ok once every 3-4 restarts. Yes I am using 10.9.5 which I have been using fine prior to adding the Shellshock patch.

Basically it starts up ok in safe mode but only once out of 3-4 regular boots. Really pissed off I added the patch. Might have to contact Apple.
 

honestone

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Darn, Alan, sorry to hear that! It does seem real strange that oldscribe and myself are not having any issues at all, after applying the patch. Also, at least on applicable sites I visit, I am not seeing any reports of problems with the patch.

When you started in safe mode and ran Disk Utility, what Disk Utility processes did you run? From what I see about Disk Utility, you can Verify the Disk, Repair the Disk, Verify Disk Permissions, and Repair Disk Permissions. Unfortunately, that might not be enough, and thus possibly a more robust Disk repair program like Disk Warrior or Tech Tool Pro could do a better job. To use Disk Warrior, you would need to boot it from an external device, which probably means you would need a backup. For Tech Tool Pro, you can run it from its "isolated" edrive located on your boot drive.

Also, if you have two Macs, you could try and do what I earlier suggested, connecting the problematic imac to a working Mac in Target Disk Mode, and then try and repair the disk on the iMac. One thing that could work is to rebuild the directory. Not sure if Disk Utility either does that or does an "acceptable" job, but Disk Warrior is excellent for that, and secondly Tech Tool Pro is good also.

When you get your successful regular boots, are all your peripherals connected? If they are, then you might try, after the safe mode process again, to run your machine and leaving the peripherals disconnected. If you keep getting good results, then there could be a problem with the patch and one or more of your peripherals. You would then need to check them one by one to try and isolate the problem. If you don't get good results even after leaving all the peripherals disconnected, then I am out of suggestions (assuming you do not have a backup, discussed below, or not using a more robust program like Disk Warrior or Tech Tool Pro), beyond wiping the dive clean, installing Mavericks, and then installing all your software

The best way to resolve this is if you have a backup that you made prior to applying the patch. Do you have a backup? If you do, then one done via either Carbon Copy Cloner or SuperDuper! would be fantastic, as you could boot from that backup, wipe the drive clean on your iMac, and then do a restore from that backup to the iMac. I had to do exactly that for my Mac Mini about two months ago, as I developed a strange internet-related behavior for one site only after downloading and installing a piece of software (I was trying to help someone). Fortunately, that issue happened only two days after I did my weekly SuperDuper! backups, and my Mac Mini was back in business after only an hour of doing what I stated: booted from the SuperDuper! backup from one of my external drives, use Disk Utility from that backup to wipe the drive completely clean on the Mac Mini, did a restore from that SuperDuper! backup to the Mac Mini. and finally rebooted the Mac Mini. It has been running smoothly ever since!
 
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oldscribe

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Hi,

If the gray screen "hangs" and your iMac doesn't continue with the boot process, it usually indicates a problem with the system or a corrupted hard,that's why I sugested first aid.

Personally I feel the update is a red herring and coincidental, and this is a hardware issue. :(Could be wrong but so as you sugested I would take in to Apple care ASAP.

You could try resetting the NVRAM / PRAM
A Shut down your Mac.

B Locate the following keys on the keyboard: Option, Command (⌘), P, and R. You will need to hold these keys down simultaneously. In no (E)

C Turn on your Mac.

D Immediately press and hold the Option-Command-P-R keys. You must press this key combination before the gray screen appears.

E Continue holding the keys down until your Mac restarts, and you hear the startup sound for the second time.

F Release the keys.
 
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honestone

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Bringing it to an Apple store is like giving up too early. Resetting the PRAM is another good step, as one of the things it does is to store information about the devices connected to your iMac.

There is always the possibility that the hard drive inside your iMac is getting bad, but you said things were working fine prior to applying the patch. That seems remote at this point, and that there could still be a hardware issue. But, it could be due to a piece of hardware connected to your iMac. Unless you bring all that equipment with you, the Apple personnel might not be able to isolate the true problem for you. That is why it would be good to try and run the "patched" iMac with all your peripherals disconnected (maybe even the mouse?). If the machine works fine like that, then it is, most likely, not a hardware issue with your internal hard drive. If not, then you know it is related to a hardware issue inside the iMac, and hopefully it will be a corrupted hard drive. If that is the case, that is where a more robust program like Disk Warrior (the best) or Tech Tool Pro would be prudent to try.

Finally, do you have a backup?
 
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