iTunes 8.2 Update Available Ahead of 3.0 Release; QuickTime Security Flaw Patched

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iTunes 8.2 became available for anyone and everyone with a Mac, not just developers, late yesterday. A pre-release version of the update has been available to registered iPhone developers since the release of iPhone OS 3.0 beta 4 a few weeks ago, and is required for those hoping to run the 3.0 software on their Apple handheld devices. The release at this time strongly suggests that iPhone OS 3.0 will go live very soon, possibly immediately following the WWDC keynote speech taking place next week.

Aside from adding support for the upcoming firmware revision, the iTunes 8.2 update also brings the usual stability enhancements and bug fixes, including a security patch involving “itms:” links used to open iTunes locations from the web. Parsing the URLs could lead to a stack overflow or arbitrary code execution, which would allow an attacker to completely take over the iTunes process.

QuickTime 7.6.2, which became available alongside the iTunes update, also patches security flaws…10, in fact, all of which involve crashes or arbitrary code execution resulting from viewing malicious content.

A third update, GarageBand 5.0.2, improves the artist lesson purchasing experience, and allows access to installed jam packs in the loop browser. As with most Apple updates, it also includes various security fixes and bug squashes.

The iTunes update has arrived a little early, considering Apple has yet to release or announce the official release date of iPhone OS 3.0, but it’s probably just being smart about a major software update and spacing things out so that its servers can better handle the load when the millions of iPhone users rush to download the firmware revision at the same time. Hopefully, by staging releases, it will avoid the kind of frustrating experiences that accompanied the release of iPhone firmware 2.0 last year.

Some users are already reporting issues with the new updates, including odd behavior from iPhones running the latest firmware beta and iTunes 8.2 final, and a bug wherein a considerable number of songs went missing from one person’s library.

I actually have yet to install the iTunes 8.2 update. While the other updates show up for me without issue, I can’t get Software Update to find the iTunes update. I thought maybe this was because I had the latest pre-release version already installed, but others with the beta seem to have been able to install. My MacBook, which hasn’t been updated with the latest test build, detected and installed the new version without problem. Let us know if you’re having any issues with any of these updates.

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