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  • Thunderbolt Update Available for Mac Users - Adds Gigabit Ethernet Adapter Support


    At WWDC 2012, as Apple announced the new retina display MacBook Pro, they also announced a new Thunderbolt to Gigabit Ethernet adapter (pictured above) along with a new Thunderbolt to Firewire adapter. This is because Apple is moving toward the world of Thunderbolt to remove larger, other ports from their computers that will cause difficulties with the new slim form factor of the aluminum computer cases.

    Today, Mac users that have Thunderbolt ports on their computers can download a new update for the Thunderbolt software (version 1.2.1) that builds in support for Apple’s new Thunderbolt to Gigabit Ethernet adapter. It will allow users to connect an Ethernet wire to any Thunderbolt port (assuming they have the adapter) and use it as a wired connection as an alternative to Apple’s built in wireless networking.

    The Thunderbolt to Gigabit Ethernet adapter is recommended only for the new retina display MacBook Pro, since all other up-to-date models of the MacBook Pro have Ethernet plug sockets already built right into the sides. However, it will work fine with any other Thunderbolt enabled Mac as well.

    You must have Mac OS X Lion 10.7.4 or later to install the Thunderbolt 1.2.1 software update. It didn't appear in the Software Update box from the  menu the last time we checked, but it should appear there soon. Until then, you can use the link above if you are impatient. It's a tiny update and should not take more more than a couple of minutes to install. You will need to restart your Mac after the update.

    Sources: MacRumors
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Thunderbolt Update Available for Mac Users - Adds Gigabit Ethernet Adapter Support started by Anthony Bouchard View original post
    Comments 11 Comments
    1. bry2k2's Avatar
      bry2k2 -
      Yep make a super thin laptop to remove large connectors but add so many "dongles" your laptop ends up looking like an octopus of messy cables, smart move apple.
    1. Anthony Bouchard's Avatar
      Anthony Bouchard -
      Quote Originally Posted by bry2k2 View Post
      Yep make a super thin laptop to remove large connectors but add so many "dongles" your laptop ends up looking like an octopus of messy cables, smart move apple.
      Oh it's not that bad. You probably won't be using it everywhere you go; the MacBook Pro DOES come with wireless networking after all and most public locations have Wi-Fi these days. I wouldn't see myself using the connector outside of my house.
    1. bigbaba's Avatar
      bigbaba -
      Quote Originally Posted by bry2k2 View Post
      Yep make a super thin laptop to remove large connectors but add so many "dongles" your laptop ends up looking like an octopus of messy cables, smart move apple.
      Like I'm sure you've heard from many girls before; it's not that big.

      To be honest you'd be plugging in an Ethernet cable anyways. I can't remember the last time I had to plug in regularly.
    1. RobertZama's Avatar
      RobertZama -
      Quote Originally Posted by bry2k2 View Post
      Yep make a super thin laptop to remove large connectors but add so many "dongles" your laptop ends up looking like an octopus of messy cables, smart move apple.
      So if you have the large connectors and cables going inside the laptop you think it would look any different?
      What difference does a little adaptor make if you already have a LAN cable coming to your laptop. It makes perfect sense for Apple to move forward and drop certain things like the optical drive. We can store data more efficiently on flash drives and memory cards. and for movies and music we have itunes iCloud and other streaming services.
    1. lilscrappydew25's Avatar
      lilscrappydew25 -
      It's not the addition of a dongle. It's the additional $29.00 for it that should be the point in question. Would you really care about a dongle or two if they came with mac?
    1. Fofer's Avatar
      Fofer -
      Quote Originally Posted by bry2k2 View Post
      Yep make a super thin laptop to remove large connectors but add so many "dongles" your laptop ends up looking like an octopus of messy cables, smart move apple.
      I haven't plugged Ethernet into my MBP in over two years. And I'm a tech professional. Smart move, Apple, indeed.
    1. cpotoso's Avatar
      cpotoso -
      So, I can't use an external display and gb ethernet at the same time? Neither any combination of more than ONE unit of: (a) gb ethernet, (b) external monitor, (c) firewire, (d) external hd. (all of this unless you buy another expensive device like a fully-functional thunderbolt "hub").
    1. Fofer's Avatar
      Fofer -
      Now that the Thunderbolt -> Ethernet adapter's description has been changed to support any Thunderbolt-enabled Mac running OS X 10.7.4 (initially it's description said it was for "the new MacBook Airs and new MacBook Pro with Retina display only") one hopes that the same compatibility will come for the Thunderbolt -> Firewire adapter as well.

      When troubleshooting, copying large amounts of data, migrating, and upgrading, you need a common ports between machines. So being able to use a Firewire adapter on a (not brand new) Mac that only has Thunderbolt would be very welcome indeed.
    1. feidhlim1986's Avatar
      feidhlim1986 -
      Isn't it great to be back in the era of adapters and dongles.
    1. Fofer's Avatar
      Fofer -
      Yes, it's great to be in the era of sleek, super thin and light devices that aren't weighed down by the legacy of unnecessary ports that are rarely (if ever) needed.

      And for those shackled by yesterday's tech, there's a $30 tiny adapter you can travel with.
    1. Mr. B's Avatar
      Mr. B -
      "Legacy." Really? ...pretty sure Ethernet will still be around in 10 years.