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Mac OS X 10.6 "Snow Leopard" is the seventh major version of Mac OS X, an operating system by Apple Inc. It was released on August 28, 2009 as the successor to Mac OS X 10.5 "Leopard" and was the predecessor to Mac OS X 10.7 "Lion".
The release of Mac OS X 10.6 "Snow Leopard" introduced the Mac App Store, an application built in the image of the iOS App Store.
The Finder has been completely rewritten using Apple's Cocoa API to take advantage of the new technologies introduced in Snow Leopard.
The operating system has a smaller footprint, taking up about 7 GiB less than the previous Mac OS X version. Some of the recovered disk space (about 250 MiB) is because printer drivers are now downloaded or installed only as needed rather than being pre-installed.
iChat was improved with greater resolution video chats in iChat Theater and lower upload bandwidth requirements.
Mail, Address Book, and iCal now support the Microsoft Exchange mail and calendaring server. However, only Microsoft Exchange 2007 is supported.
Full multi-touch trackpad support has been added to notebooks prior to those introduced in October 2008; the original MacBook Air and other early multi-touch trackpad-enabled notebooks can now use four-finger gestures.
The Preview image and PDF viewer can now infer the structure of a paragraph in a PDF document.
QuickTime X, the next version of the QuickTime player and multimedia framework, has been completely rewritten into a full 64-bit Cocoa application and builds on the media technologies in Mac OS X. The user interface was also re-designed to resemble the full-screen QuickTime view in previous versions, where the entire window displays the video. The title bar and playback controls fade in and out as needed. QuickTime X also supports HTTP live streaming and takes advantage of ColorSync to provide high-quality color reproduction.
Safari has been updated to version 4 and now features Top Sites, Cover Flow, VoiceOver, expanded standards support, and built-in crash resistance, which prevents browser crashes caused by plugins by running them in separate processes.
Time Machine, the backup software for Mac OS X, now has faster connection establishment and backup processes.
VoiceOver has also been enhanced, with the reading of web pages being improved with Auto Web Spots – areas of a page automatically designated for quick access.
Minor user interface changes were present in Mac OS X Snow Leopard, such as the title bar controls being slightly lighter in appearance, faster PDF and JPEG icon refreshes, and the default gamma being changed.