Technical blog – Apple and HP Printer Software

Last week, a number of Mac users were affected by an Apple update that caused issues with HP software and printers.

On Monday the 19th October, Apple pushed updates to its security tools, XProtect and MRT. These updates are routine and not always announced by Apple.

Some Mac users then started to report problems. Affected Macs, which can be running any version of MacOS from El Capitan to Catalina, suffered severe problems running the new version of MRT. The Macs became very slow and and while not making the devices unusable, it affected the overall performance of the Macs.

HP Printer Software

Reports about problems with HP printers start appearing from the 23rd of October. Symptoms were not all the same. When trying to print or otherwise access some HP printers, various error messages appeared and access failed. The most concerning of the alerts came from Gatekeeper, which warned that the printer software were malicious and “will damage your computer” and refused to run it. Various message were displayed, Gatekeeper would display the alerts or if using Catalina, it would crash the app.

Apple Withdraws Certificate

At some point during the 24th and 25th of October, Apple PKI withdrew the revocation of HP’s certificate, presumably at HP’s request in response to the many complaints from users. HP’s software should therefore now work normally again. In the case of the MRT update, Apple has already removed MRT 1.68, but that happened too late to help many affected users, and reverting to the previous version isn’t simple.

DARE Update

Rather than use Software Update, the most effective way to fix the issues is to manually deploy a package to all the affected Macs. The package that fixes this and needs to be installed to fully fix the issue.

This is where DARE services, such as Update, really are a powerful tool. As a DARE Update customer this package would be deployed automatically for you solving the issues with the update.

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