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Thursday, November 11, 2021

macOS Monterey and smart cards status

Monterey (macOS 12.0 or 12.0.1 in fact) is now available since October, 2021.

I compare this version to the previous one in Big Sur I presented in macOS Big Sur and smart cards status.


Since Yosemite (macOS 10.10 in 2014) the PC/SC layer is no more a fork of pcsc-lite. So comparing versions with pcsc-lite is useless.

$ cat /System/Library/Frameworks/PCSC.framework/Versions/A/Resources/version.plist
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<!DOCTYPE plist PUBLIC "-//Apple//DTD PLIST 1.0//EN" "">
<plist version="1.0">

The BuildVersion changed from 25 to 13. No idea what that means.

The SourceVersion changed from 487040010000000 to 554040005000000. Again, no idea what that means. Except that Apple made changes to the code.

I have not yet made many tests of the PC/SC layer. So far it works fine.

Crypto Token Kit

CryptoTokenKit is the native smart card API since the complete rewrite in macOS Yosemite 10.10 (OS X Yosemite BETA and smart cards status).

The framework directory changed again. There is no more a /System/Library/Frameworks/CryptoTokenKit.framework/CryptoTokenKit/ directory.

But you can of course still use the CryptoTokenKit framework. My Objective-C sample "PC/SC" sample in Objective-C (synchronous) still builds and works fine.


$ grep -A 1 CFBundleShortVersionString /usr/libexec/SmartCardServices/drivers/ifd-ccid.bundle/Contents/Info.plist
17:    <key>CFBundleShortVersionString</key>
18-    <string>1.4.34</string>
The CCID driver has been upgraded from version 1.4.32 as in Big Sur to version 1.4.34.
I released version 1.4.34 in  January 2021. The latest CCID version (at the time of writing this blog) is 1.4.36 from August 2021.

Apple Open Source

Apple has not yet added macOS Monterey to the Apple Open Source web site. So we can't say much about what Apple provides in Monterey.

macOS Monterey 12.0.1 Release Notes

CryptoTokenKit is not mentioned in the macOS Monterey 12.0.1 Release Notes. So I imagine only minor changes were made.


No big changes in Monterey for the smart card world.