safari 5.1, HOD, java, and making them like each other

My company just piloted some of the recent Apple software updates, including Safari 5.1 and Java for OS X 10.6 Update 5. While the updates were installed successfully, IBM Host On Demand (HOD) became collateral damage. HOD is a webapp that utilizes Java to initiate a connection from a client to a mainframe server, essentially acting as a virtual terminal.

After the Safari 5.1 update was applied, HOD would “sorta” load. It would show the usual java coffee cup icon with spinning progress meter, and then sometimes it would warn the user about a certificate and load once the “Accept” button was clicked, sometimes it would freeze up and you would see just a blank box in Safari, and sometimes it wouldn’t even get that far, freezing well before any security warning popped up.

After about 45 minutes of fighting with Safari and java preferences, resetting caches, restarting, etc. I discovered that forcing Safari to run in 32-bit mode (by selecting this option in the “Get Info” window for the Safari app) resolved the problem. HOD loaded just fine, though now with the 5.1 version of Safari you see an annoying Java applet icon in the dock while your session is open. So far I have not found a way to get rid of that and still have HOD work properly, but it works so…

Firefox 3.6.20 also does not have any problems loading HOD and does not have the applet icon either. I discovered this early in my troubleshooting, but wanted to make Safari work rather than taking the easy route. Oh btw, I am running v 1.6.0_26-b03-384 of Java according to the Java utility.

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