updated 05:10 pm EDT, Tue May 18, 2010
Fixes hit security, reliability, compatibility
Apple has posted two new Java updates for Mac OS X, iterated for Leopard and Snow Leopard, respectively. The Snow Leopard download -- Java for Mac OS X 10.6 Update 2 -- brings the operating system's version of Java SE 6 up to 1.6.0_20. The install file is 78MB, and requires at least Mac OS X 10.6.3.
Fixed are issues with compatibility and reliability, and several security holes, all of which could potentially result in attacks via untrusted applets attached to websites. Hackers were previously able to launch exploits using mediaLibImage objects, for example, or flaws in window drawing.
The Leopard patch is known as Update 7, and is a larger 122MB download for systems with Mac OS X 10.5.8 or later. Changes are essentially identical to those in the Snow Leopard release, with the exception of more closed vulnerabilities. Apple also reminds people that the update only affects 64-bit Leopard machines, as J2SE 1.4.2 is no longer being updated, and is in fact disabled by default.
Both updates are available either through Apple's support pages, or else the Software Update feature in Mac OS X.