Today brought with it the arrival of Mac OS X 10.6.3, a software update to the Snow Leopard operating system. In addition to a host of bug-combating fixes, the update also serves up a variety of tune ups in terms of compatibility issues with QuickTime X and OpenGL-based applications.

Today's update is the first major update to Snow Leopard since Mac OS X 10.6.2 arrived last November. As you may recall, that particular update primarily addressed the phantom bug that attacked guest accounts and frequently resulted in the deletion of primary user account data. The freshly announced 10.6.3 update, according to Apple, is recommended for all Snow Leopard users.

Packing a hefty punch at 437.2 MB and available now via Software Update, Mac OS X 10.6.3 delivers a ton of tweaks, including some of the following much-needed improvements (in addition to the compatibility issues addressed above):

* Improves the reliability of 3rd party USB input devices
* Fixes the problem that led to background message colors to display incorrectly in Mail
* Corrects the bug that prevented files with certain characters (like # or & ) in their names from working properly in Rosetta applications
* Squashes the bug that prevented files from copying to Windows file servers
* Logic Pro 9 and Main Stage 2 received a performance tweak for when they run in 64-bit mode
* The reliability of photo screen savers is improved
* Color issues addressed with regard to iMovie with HD content
* Printing reliability improved

Overall, Mac OS X 10.6.3 delivers general operating system fixes for: AirPort and wireless networking, Date and Time, Directory Services, File Services, iCal, Mail, Mobile Accounts, MobileMe, Parental Control, Rosetta, System Imaging, Time Machine, and Xsan.