“Software Update” is one of my favorite features of OS X. Instead of having to search for and then download OS updates, every day in the background the updates are downloaded and installed for me.
Unfortunately it is one of the features, at least so far as I can tell, that Apple has not opened up to outsiders. So just about every new application out there has its own “Check For Updates” feature built into it. For the most part this is not much of a hassle, but there are any number of applications on my laptop that I run infrequently or mainly when I am not connected to the Internet.
My brother, a film editor, has it worse. He does not have connectivity at home and therefore does not connect his main work machine, a G5 desktop, to the internet very often. This may sound odd, but being connected to the internet does not add any value to the work of a film editor. Plus the natural waiting involved in editing coupled with the endless ability to waste time on the internet is a dangerous combination.
The other day he called because he was unable to get some video to work in one of his editing applications. It took a while to debug, but finally we figured out that he was missing a CODEC that was in an update that he didn’t have installed. Eventually he was able to download it to his laptop and install it on his desktop machine. The process of getting the update was a bit like the old days though.
Is there any better way to get updates, either batched for users who are often offline or a system where all applications can register themselves, where to look for their updates and how often to check ?
Any other features you’d like to see in a future version of “Software Update” ?