About the Mac OS X 10.3.9 Update (Delta)

This software updates Mac OS X 10.3.8 to version 10.3.9.

If you have version 10.3, 10.3.1, 10.3.2, 10.3.3, 10.3.4, 10.3.5, 10.3.6, or 10.3.7, use the Combo Update instead.

This article has been archived and is no longer updated by Apple.

Important: Please read before installing

  • To avoid a potential issue that may cause Java applications and Safari to unexpectedly quit, please review this article.

  • You may experience unexpected results if you have third-party system software modifications installed, or if you have modified the operating system through other means. (This does not apply to normal application software installation.)
  • The installation process should not be interrupted. If a power outage or other interruption occurs during installation, use the standalone installer (see below) from Apple Downloads to update.


You have two ways to update to Mac OS X 10.3.9: Use Software Update or the standalone installer. You only need to use one of these methods to update your computer.

Automatic Software Update

Software Update, located in System Preferences, can automatically download and install the latest Apple software. Software Update may have linked you to this document for additional information about the update.

The update's size may vary from computer to computer when installed via Software Update.

Because some updates are prerequisites for others, you may need to run Software Update more than once to get all available updates.

Standalone installer

Two versions of the installer (Delta and Combo, described below) are available from Apple Downloads as standalone updates. After you download an update, you can use it to update your computer without being connected to the Internet.

  • The Delta Update installer (described here) will update Mac OS X 10.3.8 to 10.3.9.
  • The Combo Update installer will update 10.3, 10.3.1, 10.3.2, 10.3.3, 10.3.4, 10.3.5, 10.3.6, 10.3.7, or 10.3.8 to 10.3.9.

The standalone installer, particularly the Combo Update, is useful if you have multiple computers to update and only want to download the update once.


This update offers many reliability and compatibility improvements. These are just a few of the enhancements and improvements included:



  • Addresses an issue in which Stickies could unexpectedly quit when creating a new note.
  • Addresses an issue in which new Stickies are invisible.
  • Stickies windows can now be minimized (an issue with Mac OS X 10.3.4 through 10.3.8).


  • Accessing certain websites, such as msnbc.com, mail.yahoo.com, ticketmaster.com, and others, no longer displays a "bad server response" alert that could occur in Safari.
  • Addresses an issue in which "safe downloads" files are not automatically opened after downloading.
  • SSL webpages (pages with URLs that start with "https://") load faster in Safari.
  • Adds some important Verisign root certificates to Safari, allowing you to connect to certain secure websites that you might not have been able to surf before.
  • Adds other trusted root certificates to Safari, such as VISA and RSA.


  • Addresses an issue in which copied files could become fragmented (but still usable) when you copy more than one file at the same time in the Finder.
  • Addresses a rare issue in which a file could become damaged when copying to a FAT16- or FAT32-formatted volume.
  • Improves reliability when mounting (making available) a disk image that's larger than 4.7 GB.


  • Addresses slow vertical tracking and intermittent trackpad behavior on PowerBook G4 12-inch 1.5GHz, 15-inch 1.67/1.5GHz, and 17-inch 1.67GHz computers.
  • Adds an "Apple Internal 56k Modem (v.32)" modem choice that you can use if you have difficulty using Verizon's Airfone Jet Connect service.
  • Addresses an issue with Mac OS X 10.3.6 and later in which the Calculator window won't appear if the Speak Button Pressed or Speak Total options are enabled.
  • Fixes an issue at the login window, where clicking the small space just below the bottom user account picture would produce this alert:
    "Internal Error *** -[NSCF Array objectAtIndex:]: index(-1) beyond bounds (X)" (where X is the number of user accounts shown).
  • Addresses an issue in which the startup time in Mac OS X 10.3.6 through 10.3.8 may be extended if a large number of PostScript fonts are installed.
  • If your PowerBook G4 sometimes wakes up with a kernel panic, installing this update may help.
  • Addresses a data loss issue that could occur when syncing your iDisk at the same time that .Mac servers are experiencing heavy usage.
  • Avoids a potential Mail issue if the application is running when Daylight Savings Time changes.
  • Addresses some formatting issues that could occur when replying to HTML messages in Mail.
Important: Information about products not manufactured by Apple is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute Apple’s recommendation or endorsement. Please contact the vendor for additional information.
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