What’s New in Jungle Disk 3.31 for macOS

We’re excited to announce the release of the latest version of Jungle Disk for macOS. There’s quite a bit that has changed since the last update for our macOS app. Most of the changes are “under-the-hood” and won’t be noticed by typical users in their day-to-day use of Jungle Disk. However, these under-the-hood changes may have a big impact on administrators and more advanced users. Overall, we believe all of our customers will be pleased with the improvements we’ve made to the app’s performance and stability.

Let’s dive in!

What’s New?

JungleFS - A New Way to Connect Network Drives

Note: JungleFS is only used in Workgroup and Desktop Editions of Jungle Disk

In previous versions of Jungle Disk on macOS, users may have had issues with Network Drives disconnecting after updating to High Sierra. As far as we were able to discern, through recreating and debugging the issue on our own development computers, the issue was due to a bug in the webdavfs software native to Apple's macOS. Unfortunately, this was not the first time a macOS update has caused our software (and thus our customers) pain and frustration. We decided it was time to look for a different solution for mounting Network Drives.

JungleFS, our private-labeled version of the FUSE for macOS software, uses a System Extension for mounting and managing Network Drives on mac, instead of using the native operating system. We found that this software was widely used in a variety of scenarios, well maintained, and has even been integrated into other popular apps. This approach should help us avoid potential bugs introduced by updates to macOS. We’re very happy to support the FUSE for macOS project through our commercial license of the software, and excited to bring this improved experience to our Mac users.

Implementing JungleFS did bring about several changes to how Network Drives are mounted by the Jungle Disk application. Most importantly, drives are now mounted in a different place on the computer’s file system. Previous versions of Jungle Disk mounted drives to a path like /Volumes/networkdrivename, whereas JungleFS mounts drives to a user’s home directory, by default (e.g. /Users/username/networkdrivename).

Most users won’t notice this change or be affected by it. However, any users that rely on other applications or scripts to read and/or write from a Jungle Disk Network Drive, paths to drives will be different after updating to version 3.31.

Application Privileges - Per-User Configuration for Multi-user Mac Computers

Imagine a scenario in which an office has a shared Mac computer that has multiple user profiles for different team members. Previously, Jungle Disk was not able to support a different configuration for different users, so these team members had to share one setup of Jungle Disk for backups and Network Drives. With version 3.31 and the move to JungleFS, Jungle Disk now runs at the user-level rather than the system-level (e.g. root permissions). This means that each user on a shared Mac will have their own configuration of Jungle Disk, making it simple for teams with a shared Mac to tailor Jungle Disk for each users' specific needs.

Due to changing the privilege-level at which Jungle Disk runs, various configuration files, caches, logs, and other files required by the app have been moved to a different location. Previous versions of Jungle Disk stored all the "application files" in the System library directory (/Library). These files are now stored in the user’s library directory (/Users/username/Library). For users that upgrade their existing Jungle Disk installation, these applications files will be migrated to the new location immediately after the update is installed. This migration will happen silently in the background, no need for user interaction.

Heads Up!

Backup Vaults and Sync Folders that are configured to backup/sync directories and files not accessible by the local user may cause some errors, we recommend checking the Activity Monitor for any errors after a backup or when syncing. Resolving these errors may require changes to local user permissions to ensure existing backups/sync folders are able to function normally.

When upgrading to 3.31 on a multi-user machine, the user profile in use when Jungle Disk is updated will “own” existing the configuration once it's migrated. Other users will need to open Jungle Disk on their own profiles and set up a new configuration.

Security and Compatibility - Improved Experience with macOS Mojave and Catalina

If you’re a mac user and have updated to Mojave or Catalina, you’ve probably noticed some issues when running Jungle Disk backups of certain directories and file (like the Photos Library or the home directory). This is due to security changes in the OS, and these changes were expanded in the latest release, Catalina. In version 3.31, we will prompt users for permission to access these “protected resources” on a per-folder basis, rather than requiring users to allow full disk access for Jungle Disk. It’s perfectly fine to allow full disk access, but now it won’t be required. See below for details on how this will work and, if needed, how to enable full disk access

Additionally, we have made Jungle Disk fully compatible with a variety security changes Apple made for software that is distributed outside of the Mac App Store. This required us to enable certain security-related options when we compile the application, and further authorization from Apple to ensure that our application can be downloaded, installed, and run by users. Certainly this is not the most exciting change in this release, but it’s clear that Apple is really raising it's security standards for third-party applications in order to ensure that macOS users will have a safe and secure experience. We think this is a great direction for the future of macOS.

How to Install or Update to Jungle Disk 3.31

Get the App

Automatic Update: Starting today, we are incrementally rolling out automatic update notifications to existing Jungle Disk users on macOS. You'll be prompted with a window when the update is available and all you'll need to do is click "Download and Install!"

Manual Installation: If you're ready to use the new version now, head on over to our downloads page to get the app. Just download, open the file, and follow the instructions. If you already have Jungle Disk installed, be sure to allow replacement the existing version when prompted. Note: Desktop and Simply Backup users will need to login to the Jungle Disk Control Panel for the download links.

Notes on Install the App

Whether you’re installing for the first time or updating the app, there’s a few things to be aware of:

Installing the JungleFS System Extension:

With the introduction of JungleFS, the application now installs a System Extension, which requires user permission to install. Users will need to allow the extension to be installed in order for Network Drives to be connected.

Here’s a short screen recording of what that will look like and how to allow the extension to be installed:

Giving Permission for Protected User Folders:

Users may also be prompted to allow Jungle Disk to access certain protected user folders. This will only happen if and when the application attempts to read or write from one of those folders.

Here’s what it would look like when adding the photos library to an existing backup:

The prompts will always look the same, but they may not all happen at the same time, it will depend on when Jungle Disk attempts to access a protected folder. Our recommendation would be to manually run a backup and allow Jungle Disk permission when you are prompted.

Here’s a short screen recording of an example:

If you encounter any issues or have any questions about the new release, please reach out to our awesome support team via the Jungle Disk Support website, where you can chat or open a support ticket. You can also reach us by phone from 8 AM to 5  PM CST at 1-888-573-8649 (US) or +44 208 734 4175 (UK).

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