PGP on OSX Mavericks

Apple has recently released a new version of OSX (version 10.9) called Mavericks, which they are making available as a free download.

My initial tests of it have shown that there may be an issue with OSX users who have Java version 1.6 installed on their systems. This version is no longer supported by Oracle, however a number of applications still require it. Symantec’s PGP Desktop is one of those applications.

The issue causes the OSX Mavericks computer to crash and then reboot. If PGP (or other Java apps) are configured to run on startup, the machine will crash as soon as you log in.

The fix for this is to boot the Mac into Safe mode, by holding down the Shift key as it boots up, then deleting the /System/Library/Java folder. Once the machine boots up, if you really need Java installed then visit http://www.java.com and install the latest version.

This will, unfortunately, not fix PGP. At this stage, the best workaround is to switch to Gnu Privacy Guard. There is a very good, simple to use, Mac implementation available from https://gpgtools.org/.

Naturally, you will need to restore your keyrings from your backup/export – which you would be taking regularly as part of your backup regime.

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I will update this post as more information comes to light. Please contact me if you have any questions.

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