Chapter in this post:
- 1 What does MacUpdater actually do?
- 2 Why do I need MacUpdater?
- 3 Managed problems often have security vulnerabilities
- 4 My MacUpdater test
- 5 The first scan for updates
- 6 How the update works
- 7 Difference Between the Free and Commercial Version
- 8 Why there is no update-all button ...
- 9 The best settings for MacUpdater
- 10 Comparison of MacUpdater and CleanMyMac X
- 11 Download from MacUpdater
- 12 Reader's question: Is there a risk that MacUpdater will install a compromised update?
- 13 Similar posts
My reader Dirk recently referred me to the app "macupdater“ because he is very enthusiastic about the software. When I promised him that I would test the app and write a report about it, Julian – the app’s programmer – sent an email the same day with the offer that he would like to provide me with a free license code for the full version , because a user of his app told him I would like to try it out.
@Dirk: Thanks for the excellent organization. @Julian: Thanks for the license code. As a rule, however, I'm happy to pay the costs for the apps - especially when it comes to apps from "small" developers who need financial support. And – I can say this much in advance – the app is definitely worth the 10 euros that MacUpdater costs once.
What does MacUpdater actually do?
To explain it briefly: The MacUpdater app knows over 40.000 Mac apps and scans your Applications folder for these apps and then checks whether there are updates for them. With more than 5.000 of these programs, you can then trigger the updates directly in "MacUpdater" and do not have to call up and update each app individually.
In principle, you have a similar function here as in the AppStore under "Updates", except that MacUpdater serves all programs on the Mac, while the AppStore only has those apps on the screen that you have also installed via the AppStore. And unfortunately in most cases these are the very few programs on a computer.
Why do you need MacUpdater?
The MacUpdater software and also Mac apps such as the freeware Latest I've known for years, but none of these apps made it onto my Mac until now. So far, my instinctive argument against MacUpdater has been that in many cases you can do the updates in the software itself. Usually apps check with the Sparkle Framework at the start, whether there is a new version and then they suggest the update, if one is available. The disadvantage is that the updates are only offered when you start the software again. If you have something urgent to do, this is not the best time ...
In addition, not as many apps update automatically as I thought. My first scan with MacUpdater showed me that: 56 out of 94 apps on my Mac are out of date and need an update. To be honest, that surprised me and at the same time convinced me that MacUpdater makes perfect sense.
It is not uncommon for managed problems to present security holes
Obsolete software is not only a restriction in comfort, because you do without new features. Much more important are the plugged security holes, which can often be found in the small program updates. Just remember the Flash Player, which was already known as a changing security problem in the times of Steve Jobs, because the installation of the updates didn’t work as quickly as new security holes were found. At this point a reference to my old post "Flash deals the deathblow to himself".
My test of MacUpdater
If you want to try out a software like MacUpdater, a situation like mine is exactly right: I have niche software like Aja System Test as well as classics like Adobe Creative Cloud or banking apps like MoneyMoney. Here MacUpdater can show what it can do.
Since I even installed the CleanMyMac X app, which also has an "updater" function, you can also directly compare what both apps find outdated software here. More on that at the end of the article.
The first scan for updates
If you run MacUpdater after the installation, it needs a few minutes (about 2 to 3 for me) to check which apps are installed on the Mac and which updates are available. By the way, the software has been localized in German for a few months, so that you don't have to deal with the English user interface (but with my Denglish it does!).
Once the scan is complete, you will receive a more or less extensive list of the apps that are available in the new version. There are different buttons on the right in the list:
- "Update app"
MacUpdater can perform the update here - also automatically for many apps at the same time.
- "Upgrade App"
This button appears when there is a major version jump (for example from 2.3 to 3.1).
- "Open updater"
This appears for me, for example, with Photoshop and Illustrator, because the Adobe Updater has to import the updates for the Creative Cloud. But you will still be informed about it and get a button that leads you directly to the updater.
- "Manual update"
Here you have to go to the developer's website and download the update yourself. However, MacUpdater offers the link to the software's homepage.
This is how the update works
If you now click on “Update App”, the update will be imported directly. If MacUpdater has determined that it is a major version jump, there is an "Upgrade app" button and you are given a notification that this may be a paid update if the app is commercial. If it is a minor update and only the version number after the dot changes (e.g. from 5.23 to 5.65), then the updater continues directly and displays the progress in the list.
You can also click directly through all the buttons in the list. MacUpdater then takes care of the update one by one and only makes one update at a time. So the Mac remains usable and you can do other things. Only now and then does an installer window appear from some programs that want admin access. Otherwise everything happens in the background and does not interfere with your work.
If you would like to learn more about an update, you can even look at the changelog in MacUpdater. Clicking on the small info button ("i") opens a window with the available information.
Another practical feature is the backup function that can be activated. Here you can set, for example, that you want to keep the last five versions of the software loaded as a backup. This can be helpful, for example, if a new version turns out to be very buggy and you would like to downgrade again.
Difference between the free and commercial version
With the free trial version, ten apps can be updated in this way. You can only update more apps than ten if you activate the "Pro" version, which costs 10 euros (one-off). In times when every text editor starts a subscription model, I find the price for the app more than reasonable, since the developer constantly takes care of expanding the database behind MacUpdater. If you have software that is not recorded - which is unlikely to happen with more than 40.000 apps in the database - you can write to Julian and he will make sure that MacUpdater also has this software on the screen in the future.
Why there is no update-all button ...
What MacUpdater doesn't have is a button that just launches all updates that are possible. You have to filter the list by "outdated apps" and "updates only" and then press all buttons individually. With 30 to 40 apps, as in my case, this is a bit time-consuming, but the developers explain that they deliberately chose not to have this button.
MacUpdater is not intended to become the one-click solution as it would encourage the wrong approach to updates. The users should find out about the updates before pressing the button. The software should make this way more comfortable - nothing more. Carelessly installing all available updates would inevitably lead to problems sooner or later.
The best settings for MacUpdater
From my point of view, the settings are not optimally selected after installation. I think most Mac users should be fine with the selection I made. This is not a must, but my suggestion.
Compare MacUpdater and CleanMyMac X
I have the software CleanMyMac X in use, which among other things also has a function called "Updater". However, this is not really competitive, because during macupdater I found almost 60 updates on my Mac at CleanMyMac X only a whopping 7 updates offered. Also the free softwareLatest" seems - according to statements from several users in forums - to have significantly fewer apps on the screen than MacUpdater. So if you're serious about updating, you can't avoid MacUpdater.
Download from MacUpdater
You can download the free trial version here on the CoreCode website:
If you have any more questions about MacUpdater, this is the FAQ page of the software a good place to go.
PS: I'm trying to get two or three license codes for the raffle from Julian from CoreCode. Whoever wants to take part can subscribe to my weekly newsletter. There, the raffles for products and licenses take place at irregular intervals.
PPS: I just got a message from Julian. The three licenses are with me and will be raffled shortly.
Reader's question: Is there a risk that MacUpdater will install a compromised update?
After this article appeared, my reader Charly sent me another question:
I once had MacUpdate Desktop https://www.macupdate.com/desktop#tpt=1
But there were problems with malware in modified files, you remember?
Is that impossible with MacUpdater?
Thanks for your question.
This is really good, because it would in principle be possible for someone to blame you with something infected. However, the MacUpdater also gets the updates directly from the manufacturer. That means, if it is infected there, you would be affected either way - even if you downloaded it manually from their website.
The developer of MacUpdater is even planning to add a feature that gets a checksum from the developer. This allows the software to recognize when the update has been changed in any way.
In practice, in my opinion, there is no more or less risk than loading the updates manually from the software developer's homepage.
After graduating from high school, Johannes completed an apprenticeship as a business assistant specializing in foreign languages. But then he decided to research and write, which resulted in his independence. For several years he has been working for Sir Apfelot, among others. His articles include product introductions, news, manuals, video games, consoles, and more. He follows Apple keynotes live via stream.
1 comment on "MacUpdater: Centrally search for and install updates for programs on the Mac"
I think MacUpdater is a really great program that is worth the money.
Congratulations to Julian for this achievement!
I highly recommend it.