Learning from Software Update feature on Mac

Some of GlassFish engineers including me working on providing the auto update (update center) feature on GlassFish. That way users can get blue prints, frameworks, sample applications, additional modules or add on products as they are available on GlassFish, rather than downloading new builds and installing the whole new build. So I thought I would look at he Software Update feature on Mac. I started from "System Preferences" icon/menu. If you are not very familiar with Mac, "System Preferences" is equivalent to "Control Panel" in windows. System Preferences has 4 categories - Personal, Hardware, Internet & Network and System. "Software Update" is available in the System section. Once I clicked on "Software Update", the screen looks like the following:



This main screen shows the time when last software update was successfully. You can also select how often to check for updates. The default seems to be weekly. I clicked on the installed updates. It shows the following screen:



It shows the installed components, the date & time of the install and versions. Nice thing is it allows open this information a log file. This feature will be useful, if you want to share what types of updates are installed on your computer. I go back to Update Software tab, click on "Check Now" button. After a brief delay of showing the following screen



It comes back the list of the updates. It auto selects the recommended updates. For example in the following screen 4 out of 6 are selected. This screen also provides a brief description about the update. For example you can also look other 2 updates (which are currently unselected) and decide if you want to install them too. Airpot feature seems to fix connectivity and security issues. I chose this update, as I use wireless feature often and want to update to date with security features.



Another thing I liked about the Apple's Software Update feature is that it lets you download the updates in the background, can notify when the downloading of these updates is done. This way user does not have to wait for the download of the updates. I also the fact that restart required status shown, so I have a choice to select only "no restart required" updates when I do not want to restart the computer. We have looked at Google pack and its updater too. We will be looking at Ubuntu update features in preparation for desing of Update Center feature in GlassFish. If you are interested, please provide feedback and paticipate.
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