Mac Software Update Question re: Outboard HD's

I am running a Mac G4 with OS 10.3.9, which I just upgraded from 10.3.8. When I installed the upgrade, everything seemed to work just fine.

Then i went to update my Safari, and while my main hard drive was suitable for installing the new update, my outboard HD (firewire) showed a red exclamation point.

To me, this indicates that the external HD was not updated from 10.3.8. I’m assuming there’s a simple way to do this, but I am at a loss. I would have thought it would update along with the rest of the system.


Thanks in advance!

Huh? Do you mean you maintain a bootable operating system on you external drive, too? You need to boot from it and run software update again to update it.

If I don’t know what you’re talking about, then, uh, what are you talking about? When and where do you get red exclamation points? If you don’t have an OS on the external drive, you can’t boot from it, and I think you get some type of exclamation point at startup.

Try the “Disk”. It may have a driver update for 10.3.9.

No, it’s not about that really. I guess I was wondering what was up, and whether or not the update changes anything WRT the way data is stored and/or referenced on the external drive, as I could see that becoming a problem down the road.

When I went to install the Safari update, I clicked on the external HD just because I’d never seen the exclamation point before, and I got a popup that said that I needed 10.3.9 to install the update, and this drive was 10.3.8. Which led me to thinking that something is wrong here, else why would there need to be an alert at all?

So I guess my real question is why wouldn’t the update affect all data storage devices across the system, and could this be a problem down the road? I’ve done several updates on the system from the earliest incarnations of Panther, and I’ve never seen this before.

Sort of an obvious first question, but do you have enough space for Safari on your outboard HD?

a) Updating your operating system doesn’t do diddly squat to volumes other than the startup volume, whether they be partitions of the same physical hard drive or entirely separate hard drives.

b) Nor do they need to have anything done to them. I have nine partitions and I store all kinds of files and programs in various places on them. Six of the nine are bootable. Updating the operating system on the main volume doesn’t affect the operating systems on the others.

c) The only programs that are negatively affected by having them somewhere other than your main bootable volume (and in the /Applications folder, at that) are the Apple-branded ones: iPhoto, iTunes, TextEdit, iChat, Safari, etc. The built-in Software Update will be attempting to update those apps as well as patching the OS itself, and if they aren’t where Apple considers them to belong, they won’t get updated. But all your 3rd-party apps such as Photoshop, Eudora, FileMaker, Acrobat, Word, Excel, Firefox, Dreamweaver, etc etc, will do just fine wherever you choose to put them. Software Update isn’t going to address these 3rd-party apps so it doesn’t matter where they are.

d) Any HFS + (= HFS Extended) volume that works fine on any prior incarnation of the MacOS (dating back to MacOS 8.1 I guess) will work fine with the modern OS X without modifications, and that includes suitability for putting applications on them. The older format, HFS Standard (HFS without the +), can be very mildly problematic (I kept having aliases to programs break when the aliases went to an old HSF Standard volume. This was back in the MacOS 10.1.5 days, I haven’t had an HFS Standard hard drive partition in a long time now).

I get it now – you’re trying to run a software installer (Safari in this case), and when it’s time to choose a destination, your external hard drive has an explanation point, and the message that you must have 10.3.9 to install on that drive.

Okay, the Safari installer only installs in /Applications, which is only (by default) on your current boot drive. It’s possible that if your external drive had had an operating system installed on it, the installer would have let you install Safari there, too, but you don’t so it won’t let you. Pretty much, then, you can only install Safari on your internal drive unless you boot off of the external one.

Got it thanks - I’m worrying about nothing. I don’t keep any apps on the outboard drive (250 GB) but instead use it for media files, and for space for my recording projects and video stuff.

Thanks all!