Second Level Of Security

May 20th, 2016

An issue MarsEdit users are running into with increased frequency is a challenge, when trying to connect to a blog, for a “second level of security” password. This panel is usually only displayed when a blog has been configured with an HTTP Basic protection to ensure it is completely private:


However it is recently being erroneously displayed for many users who have no such (intentional) protection set up.

The problem is rooted in web hosting administrators increasingly restricting access to the interface that MarsEdit uses to connect to blogs, called the “API.” For example, on a typical WordPress blog the API will usually be located by a URL like:

Many web hosting teams have instituted a blanket ban on accessing URLs like these, and the way they configure the host causes an error code to be returned to MarsEdit that it mistakes for a “second level of security.”

The solution to this problem is to contact your web hosting team and ask them to explicitly whitelist access to the API Endpoint URL (you can find yours in MarsEdit’s blog settings) for your blog. It may help to provide your web hosting team a log of the conversation between MarsEdit and your blog:

  1. Open MarsEdit
  2. Select Window -> Network Log from the menu bar.
  3. Clear the log if it’s not already empty.
  4. Try to refresh the blog again from MarsEdit.
  5. Copy the network log contents.

Once they have fixed the configuration of your server, the annoying security request should stop appearing in MarsEdit.

FlexTime 1.3.1: Animation Fix

May 17th, 2016

FlexTime 1.3.1 is now available from the FlexTime home page and will be submitted for review by Apple for the Mac App Store.

This update addresses an issue which snuck in somewhere along the way, causing the animated “pie chart” progress indicator to stop animating if you increase the size of a window while a routine is active:

Image of FlexTime running a routine

The issue turns out to be rooted in what I think is a system-level bug, but I found a workaround that seems to get the animation back to displaying reliably.

This update also fixes a couple other little glitches. Complete list of changes:

  • Fix a bug that could cause the routine progress indicator to stop animating during a routine
  • Text is now preserved when switching from a Speak Text to a Show Text cue and vice-versa
  • Fix a bug in which the text field for “At Intervals” section remained enabled even if routine is not divided

Let me know if you run into other issues!

MarsEdit 3.7.7: Flickr Privacy Checkbox

April 11th, 2016

MarsEdit 3.7.7 is now available from the MarsEdit home page, and will be submitted to Apple for update on the Mac App Store.

In MarsEdit 3.7.6, I changed the behavior of the Flickr photo browser so that it only showed “public” photos. I had received some requests to omit private photos from the list, and it seemed to make sense: who would want to blog with private photos?

It turns out a few people do in fact keep their photos private by default but take advantage of the fact that even a private photo can be embedded in public blog content.

To satisfy both folks who treat private photos as permanently, 100% not suitable for blogging, and folks who want to occasionally select from among these for their posts, MarsEdit 3.7.7 now features a checkbox:

Image of the MarsEdit media manager window with the

Just check it on or off to suit your preference, and the choice will stick until you choose otherwise.

Complete list of changes:

  • Private Flickr photos can now be included or not at user’s discretion
  • Fix a bug that caused Google/Blogger image uploads to sometimes fail
  • Fix a bug that caused removal of items from Media Favorites to fail
  • Fix terminology used in panel while sending a new or edited post


MarsEdit 3.7.6: Lots Of Bug Fixes

March 8th, 2016

MarsEdit 3.7.6 is now available from the MarsEdit home page, and has been submitted to Apple for update on the Mac App Store.

I recently took the opportunity to go through a long list of open bug reports against MarsEdit, and discovered a good number of items that I felt motivated to finally take action on. Although MarsEdit is on the whole very stable, like any complex application, it has bugs. This release fixes many minor issues that have nonetheless affected users over the years.

Here is the list of bugs addressed by this update:

  • Fix a bug that prevented local draft being deleted after publishing bookmark-generated posts
  • Fix a bug in which pasted text from Microsoft Word could get treated as an image in MarsEdit
  • Fix a bug that could allow image uploads to be attempted to a blog that doesn’t support it
  • Fix a bug that could cause unnecessary prompts for Blogger username/password
  • Fix a bug in which the media manager failed to update the target blog when active document changed
  • Fix a bug in which image pixel size did not adjust to account for Retina mode switching on
  • Fix the Flickr browser to omit photos that are not public
  • Fix the appearance of ‘New Category’ text field to use proper placeholder text
  • Fix scripting support for inserting text, so the insertion point moves to the end of insertion

Software development and design is an iterative process. Here’s looking forward to the next steps!