TABLE OF CONTENTS:


Q: What is the purpose of MacUpdater?

Q: Can MacUpdater update apps downloaded from the 'Mac App Store'?

Q: Does MacUpdater have accurate version information for all Mac-apps?

Q: Can MacUpdater update each and every (non-'Mac App Store') app to the newest version?

Q: Why doesn't MacUpdater have an 'Update-All' button?

Q: Why does MacUpdater show me some updates (e.g. Microsoft Office apps) before they seem to be available?

Q: Whats the roadmap for future versions of MacUpdater?

Q: Are any discounts available for MacUpdater, e.g. for students?

Q: Why is an app shown as 'outdated' although i have the newest version installed too?

Q: What about apps which i have installed twice, in an old and a new version?

Q: Why do some apps not show up in MacUpdater?

Q: Why can't i re-scan as often as i want?

Q: What happens when applying an update and the new version of the app has a new name?

Q: Where does MacUpdater download updates from? What about security?

Q: Why are some apps i've purchased on the 'Mac App Store' not hidden when i select 'Hide Mac App Store apps'?

Q: What will 'MacUpdater' show as the 'Latest Version'? What about upgrades, name-changes, etc?

Q: Will updates to 'Beta'-versions show up in MacUpdater?

Q: Will MacUpdater upgrade paid apps to new major versions that may have an upgrade-fee?

Q: Will MacUpdater offer or install updates that do not run on my macOS version?

Q: Will MacUpdater be offered for purchase on the Mac App Store?

Q: Can MacUpdater make Backups of old apps before updating them or Backups of the new app-downloads?

Q: On how many Macs can I use MacUpdater?

Q: How can i recover my lost license key?


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Q: What is the purpose of MacUpdater?

A:

The purpose of MacUpdater is to:

1.) Find out which of the apps that you have installed outside of the 'Mac App Store' are not currently up-to-date.

2.) Get notified automatically about new updates to your (non-'Mac App Store') apps with the periodic scan.

3.) Quickly be able to update your apps to their newest version with the click of a button.



Q: Can MacUpdater update apps downloaded from the 'Mac App Store'?

A:

No. Apps downloaded from the 'Mac App Store' need to be updated by the 'Mac App Store' app. However, MacUpdater can open the 'Mac App Store'-app for your convenience.

Notice that you can configure your Mac to update 'Mac App Store'apps automatically so there is definitely no need for MacUpdater to do that as well.



Q: Does MacUpdater have accurate version information for all Mac-apps?

A:

Its probably impossible to have information about all apps, as new ones are created every day. However we have:

Tier-1 support for more than 2.500 apps. Updates of those apps show up in MacUpdater at the exact time of the official release. You can update them to the newest version fully automatically.

Tier-2 support for more than 5.000 apps. Updates of those apps show up in MacUpdater within a few days of the official release. You can update them to the newest version fully automatically.

Tier-3 support for more than 30.000 apps. These apps show the newest version information within MacUpdater (possibly with some delay), but MacUpdater is unable to actually update them. These apps are listed as 'un-updatable'.



Q: Can MacUpdater update each and every (non-'Mac App Store') app to the newest version?

A:

No, and MacUpdater probably never will be able to update each and every app. Some vendors design their apps in a way so that they can only be updated with their own custom updater-apps. Notable here are Adobe and Microsoft. If you want to update those, MacUpdater will offer you to automatically launch the repective auto-updater app. Apart from those, we currently have support for updating more than 3000 of the most popular apps and this number is continuing to grow. For more details about app-support see the question above.



Q: Why doesn't MacUpdater have an 'Update-All' button?

A:

Most questions of 'why doesn't it have' can usually be answered with - the product is very young and we haven't added it yet (see our roadmap). However, in the case of the 'Update-All' button, our current plan is to NOT implement the button. Sure, an 'Update-All' button sounds useful at first especially if you have many outdated apps. However, we think an 'Update-All' button encourages the wrong approach to using MacUpdater (in addition to bringing significant complexity). Before clicking 'Update' you should check if there may be reasons to delay or avoid that update, or if that update can be made without having to purchase a new license (see 'Paid Upgrades' below). Not having an 'Update-All' button avoids a situation where you have installed an update that you would have rather avoided (our backup feature can come in handy here). That said, an 'Update-All' button would solve a real problem. Installing more than a few updates can take some time, as you currently have to wait for each update to be finished before installing the next one. So, we aim to solve this problem in a different way. Not by implementing an 'Update-All' button, but by allowing updates to be started in parallel, by quickly clicking the 'Update' button of different apps in-a-row. This will have 99% of the benefit of an 'Update-All' button, without any of the downsides.



Q: Why does MacUpdater show me some updates (e.g. Microsoft Office apps) before they seem to be available?

A:

Companies often make staged rollouts for applications with a lot of users, which means that they enable updates in groups bit by bit to prevent server overload. So, there is a random delay until your Microsoft or Dropbox AutoUpdater will show you the update that MacUpdater told you about and that is actually released according to their website. So if you receive an update-notification from MacUpdater for an app that has a lot of users, but your app doesn’t find the update one when opened, just wait for one or two days and try it again. In some rare cases there is also the possibility that a beta-release sneaked into MacUpdater's database, please see the question about 'Beta Versions' below.



Q: Whats the roadmap for future versions of MacUpdater?

A:

Our roadmap for MacUpdater contains - amongst many others - these features:
• ability to queue multiple installations
• improved detection of paid upgrades
• automatic re-scanning instead of scheduled scanning
• add ability to abort an update-in-progress
• add ability to update Mac App Store apps
• show date of updates and ability to sort apps by update-date
• add support for "non-app" software like drivers, preference panes, plugins, etc
• add support for tracking beta versions
• add support for tracking older releases for apps that have multiple supported versions
• from non-admin accounts, ability to update multiple apps without entering password multiple times
If you need anything else, just drop us a line!



Q: Are any discounts available for MacUpdater, e.g. for students?

A:

We feel that MacUpdater is priced very cheaply already, both in terms of value, as well as in comparison to our competitors. Still, we know that not everyone will be able to pay the full price of MacUpdater. So, we have the following discounts available:
• there is an educational discount of 35% applicable for students and
• there is another discount of 35% for people living outside of the 40 wealthiest countries

To apply for the discount just send us a confirmation and we will provide you with the discount-code.

If neither of the existing discounts apply to you, but you still are unable to pay the full price of MacUpdater, just contact us and we will work something out.



Q: Why is an app shown as 'outdated' although i have the newest version installed too?

Q: What about apps which i have installed twice, in an old and a new version?

A:

MacUpdater handles each installation of an app seperately. If an app is installed twice, you'll see it twice in the the list of 'all' apps. If one of those copies is outdated, you'll see this old version in the list of 'outdated' apps, even if you have the newest version of the app installed too. If you have an old version of an app installed additionally to the newest version you'll usually want to ignore the old copy since you already know that it isn't up-to-date. Just select the old app version and choose 'Ignore this App' (not 'Ignore Update'!) from the context- or app-menu. Your other, new version of this app will still be tracked by MacUpdater and you'll still receive notifications once the new version is not up-to-date anymore.



Q: Why do some apps not show up in MacUpdater?

A:

All of your applications should show up in MacUpdater, however there are a few reasons why apps can be ignored so that they don't show up in MacUpdater:
• we hide all apps that are built into the operating system by Apple
• we hide all apps that are auxiliary apps to other apps like helper apps, installers, uninstallers, launchers, etc (if you find one of those still being displayed, just let us know)
• also we currently only show 'real apps' and nothing else like drivers, preference panes, plugins, etc (support for those is planned at a later stage)
• some apps are ignored because they use a 'template' or empty 'bundle identifier' that the developer has forgotten to customise for his app, making the app indistinguishable from other apps. this usually is only the case for unpopular apps from inexperienced developers.
• some apps are also ignored because they contain no version information at all that could be used for comparison. this is usually only the case for unpopular apps from inexperienced developers.
• we also hide several apps that aren't real apps anyway and don't contain any useful version information, e.g. Chrome apps, Winebottler apps, Wineskin apps, Parallels apps, VMWare apps, Fluid apps, Epichrome apps
• we also hide apps installed by 'Setapp', those should be updated with 'Setapp'
• some apps have to be ignored because comparing version numbers does not make sense there. some apps exist in different versions for different hardware, so using the latest version might actually be impossible. for example some apps from printer or scanner manufacturers are tied to specific hardware. the 'Brother Control Center' and 'HP Printer Utility' need to be excluded for this reason.



Q: Why can't i re-scan as often as i want?

A:

We've had some restrictions regarding the maximum amount of manual scans that can be started in a short time amount because our server broke-down due to too many concurrent scans.
We've since moved to a new backend server and lifted the restrictions a bit, but there is still one restriction: you can't start more than 3 manual scans in 18 hours.
This is not a restriction that is meant to impede any of our users, but basically exists for three reasons:
1.) actually there shouldn't be a reason to re-scan manually at all and there certainly can't be any valid reason to re-scan that often.
2.) it is unfair if some people bombard our server by unnecessary starting manual scans every few minutes only to degrade the service for other customers which stick to the normal daily scan.
3.) it is actually not a good idea to fetch each update at the very second that it is released. developers make mistakes and sometimes updates contain bugs and are retraced soon after release. If you re-scan every hour, you increase your risk of applying a bad update. If you stick to a normal scan interval you minimize your risk.

The 'Launch a full manual re-scan' button exists more or less for historical reasons (and will probably be removed in future versions), and there shouldn't be much need to actually use it.
MacUpdater works best if you just let it run in the background and check for new apps every day and there should be little reason to ever start an additional scan. Even if you'd rather launch MacUpdater on-demand, 4 scans in 18 hours should be much much more than necessary.
Lets examine each reason why you could think that you want to launch a manual rescan:
• You've uninstalled an app from your Mac and want it to no longer show up in MacUpdater. You can either wait until the next daily scan but if you want it to be removed right now just re-scan this app and it will be removed. In any case, there is no need to launch a full scan.
• You've installed a new app on your Mac and want it to show up in MacUpdater. You can either wait until the next daily scan since there is no need for it to show up immediately since a new download will obviously not be outdated. You can also add the app to MacUpdater immediately by dragging it onto the list via Drag&Drop. In any case, there is no need to launch a full scan.
• Apps that are updated outside MacUpdater often aren’t ’scanned’ until the next full scan. However, if you update apps manually or through the MacAppStore, MacUpdater will automatically know about this if you click the corresponding button in MacUpdater ("Manual Update" or "Open AppStore") before performing the update. If you did not click the button beforehand or the automatic re-scan did not work, you can just re-scan this particular app for its information to be updated if you do not want to wait until the next scan. In any case, there is no need to launch a full scan.

That said, if you think you've a valid reason for rescanning more often than is currently allowed, just drop us a line and we will find a solution.

Future versions of MacUpdater will get rid of the 'Launch manual re-scan' button completely and track installations, uninstallations and updates done outside MacUpdater automatically.



Q: What happens when applying an update and the new version of the app has a new name?

A:

Although it is undesirable, apps change their name in the filesystem between versions (e.g. from "SuperApp 2017" to "SuperApp Plus 2018").
However, it is technically impossible to determine whether the new version of an app has really been renamed, or whether you've just previously renamed the app in the Finder yourself.
There are two possible behaviours that MacUpdater could apply:
• Always keep the old application name and update the app in-place when downloading and installing an update. This is beneficial if you've renamed the app yourself, as MacUpdater will keep your custom name. The downside is, if the app has really changed its name, the new name will be discarded, which may be confusing if the app still has the old name but the new version. NOTE: this has been the default behaviour of MacUpdater up to version 1.3.7.
• Always use the new application name when downloading and installing an update. The upside here would be that apps that have been re-named always have their 'right' name after an update. The downside would be that if you rename apps yourself, this would always be discarded when MacUpdater applies any update. Its currently impossible to select this behaviour.

There is a third option: keep the old name for 'minor updates', use the new app-name for all 'major upgrades' - as those are most likely to really change the app name. This has been the default behaviour of MacUpdater version 1.3.7 and above. Also note that MacUpdater sends a 'notification' if an app has been renamed so that you can verify if this is intended or re-name the app back if you want.

MacUpdater used the first option as behaviour up to version 1.3.7 and uses the third option from version 1.3.7 onwards. In the future we want to make this behaviour configurable.

Note that all of this only applies to updates that MacUpdater can perform fully automatically. If an update contains an installer, MacUpdater has no influence over what is done and just launches the installer for you.



Q: Where does MacUpdater download updates from? What about security?

A:

We always download updates directly from the vendor of the application. Many app-vendors nowadays host their stuff in the cloud, but we always always use the URLs that are used:
• either when downloading the app directly from their official homepage
• or when downloading an update with the built-in “check for updates” function many apps have
(most often, but not always, these two should be the same).

You can easily verify this because during each download you see the URL that is being used. And you can even have a look at the URL beforehand by clicking the info-button next to the 'Update App' button.

Since the original download URLs from the application vendor are used, the security of using MacUpdater is the same as when downloading directly from the homepage or when using a 'Check for updates' function in an app. Actually the security is even better because when a domain of an application vendor goes offline, we remove the corresponding downloads and will not re-add them without scrutiny.

Still, we are obviously looking to improve security even further by introducing an option to verify downloads with checksums if they are available.



Q: Why are some apps i've purchased on the 'Mac App Store' not hidden when i select 'Hide Mac App Store apps'?

A:

There are two cases where MacUpdater will not consider an app to be of the 'MacAppStore-type', even when you've downloaded it from the 'Mac App Store' and consequently not hide it when you select 'Hide Mac App Store apps' from the filter menu:
• if the app is now not available from the Mac App Store anymore (in your country)
• if the latest version of the app is now available only outside of the 'Mac App Store'



Q: What will 'MacUpdater' show as the 'Latest Version'? What about upgrades, name-changes, etc?

A:

MacUpdater will always display the 'newest officially released stable version' (that will run on your macOS version) for any app. This is easy and definition for most apps, but can get quite complicated for some apps.
Even if an app changes its name, or is sold by another company now, MacUpdater should always display the absolutely latest official version of that app. Furthermore, even if an app is discontinued but replaced with an 'official successor' app, MacUpdater will try to display this successor app as the latest version. Note that MacUpdater will try to explain the situation regarding any offered app-upgrades when you click the info-button next to an app. This button is highlighted in red for important or 'complicated' upgrade situations.
Sometimes a developer will decide to restart the version number of his app at 1.0, which can lead to the case where the newest version number being offered for update by MacUpdater will actually be lower than your current version number. However, all of those cases have been manually verified and deliberately enabled by us, so if you see a lower version number offered for update this is not a 'wrong information' but should always be correct.
While some developers support multiple versions of the 'same' app, 99% of developers only provide updates for a single latest version of their app that is offered for download or sale. Therefore MacUpdater is currently also based on the concept of a single, latest version number for any app. Future versions of MacUpdater may provide support for multiple 'latest' versions per app.
Note that some upgrading from your current version to the latest version of some apps may cost money, but MacUpdater will try to mark these as 'Upgrades' instead of 'Updates', see 'Paid Upgrades' below.
If MacUpdater shows you an upgrade that you do not want to take at the moment for some reason (e.g. cost of the upgrade), just select 'Ignore App' to completely ignore this app and hide it from MacUpdater or 'Ignore Update' to just ignore this particular update to the app. It is probably best to erase your ignored-app list (in the Settings-tab) from time to time to re-evaluate the latest versions of your apps.
Also note that 'Beta Versions should always be hidden from MacUpdater, please see the question about 'Beta Versions' below.



Q: Will updates to 'Beta'-versions show up in MacUpdater?

A:

Beta Versions should always be hidden from MacUpdater. With 'Beta' we mean any version that is not officially released as a normal and stable version, e.g. alpha-, beta-, rc- and development-versions and 'snapshots'. There are three exceptions: First, some apps don't have a stable release yet. Second, for some apps even the developer recommends to download the beta version because it works so much better than any previous 'stable' release (e.g. 'TextMate' or 'Fugu'). The third exception are apps that by their very definition only provide beta versions, e.g. Google's Chrome 'Dev' or 'Chromoium' versions. Apart from these exceptions, if you see a beta-version being offered for update in 'MacUpdater' please let us know through the built-in 'Report App Feedback' dialoge so that we can remove it.
Also note that MacUpdater will never ask you to downgrade. So, if you have a beta version installed that is newer than the latest released version, you'll also see the version number of your beta version listed as 'Latest Version' in MacUpdater. This is implemented as a convenience so that people running beta versions aren't constantly bugged to downgrade, but it does not mean that this beta version is 'contained' in our database or that we would offer this version as an update to other users.
We are planning an option to enable optional tracking of 'beta' versions but this will only be possible for some apps, and remain a non-default option.



Q: Will MacUpdater upgrade paid apps to new major versions that may have an upgrade-fee?

A:

MacUpdater will always display the newest released version for any app. For many paid apps, upgrading to the latest version may cost money if your license does not cover the upgrade. Its quite difficult and in some cases impossible to automatically detect whether you are entitled for a free update. Currently MacUpdater flags updates as 'upgrades that might cost money' if the app is not known to be free, and the major version changed between the installed and the offered version. If MacUpdater detects this for an app, it will label the 'Update' button with 'Upgrade' instead and ask for confirmation prior to updating. For apps with time-based licenses or when an app charges money even for minor releases, you need to be careful yourself about installing updates.



Q: Will MacUpdater offer or install updates that do not run on my macOS version?

A:

MacUpdater has several mechanisms in place so that it will not actually show the newest version of an app, but the newest version that actually runs on your macOS version. In addition to not displaying versions that won't run on your Mac, MacUpdater also won't update apps to versions that are incompatible with your macOS version. That said, these mechanisms can fail e.g. when the developer of an app makes an mistake. If you ever find that MacUpdater displays or updates an app version that is not compatible with your macOS version, please let us know and we will fix this immediately.



Q: Will MacUpdater be offered for purchase on the Mac App Store?

A:

No, it is impossible to offer MacUpdater in the Mac App Store, since Apple only allows applications there that are severely limited in their functionality, i.e. that run in a "sandbox". These limitations are OK for most normal document-editing applications but its technically impossible to make an application like MacUpdater that can operate with these restrictions. So, unless Apple changes its mind about these restrictions, MacUpdater will never appear in the Mac App Store.
However, if you have any specific ideas for improvements to the current purchasing option ("Paddle") or wishes for additional purchasing options (besides the Mac App Store) just let us know.



Q: Can MacUpdater make Backups of old apps before updating them or Backups of the new app-downloads?

A:

Yes, you can configure MacUpdater to 1.) make backups of an old app before updating it and/or 2.) make backups of downloaded installation files for your new apps. Both can be configured in the Settings. You can enter a number of backups to keep. This is the total number of backups and not per-app. You can not configure the location of the backups yet, those are always done into ~/Library/Application Support/MacUpdater/. Better configurability is on our Roadmap. If you need to change the Backup location right now and can't wait until we've implemented this, you can work around the missing configurability with a 'Symlink' (as with any other app):
1.) Quit MacUpdater
2.) Move the "OldAppBackups" and/or "NewDownloadBackups" folders from ~/Library/Application Support/MacUpdater/ to another Disk or Location.
3.) Assuming you've moved the folders to "/Volumes/BIGEXTERNALDISK/MacUpdater/", create symlinks like this in the Terminal:
ln -s "/Volumes/BIGEXTERNALDISK/MacUpdater/OldAppBackups/" "/Users/YOURUSERNAME/Library/Application Support/MacUpdater/"
and/or
ln -s "/Volumes/BIGEXTERNALDISK/MacUpdater/NewDownloadBackups/" "/Users/YOURUSERNAME/Library/Application Support/NewDownloadBackups/"
obviously you'll need to 1.) adjust the first path with 'BIGEXTERNALDISK' to match your actual location and 2.) replace YOURUSERNAME with your UNIX username
4.) Assuming everything went fine, you can re-launch MacUpdater and the Backups will now be done in the location of your choice



Q: On how many Macs can I use MacUpdater?

A:

If you bought MacUpdater you can use it concurrently on 5 Macs.
If you move to a new Mac always make sure to 'deactivate' MacUpdater on the old Mac from the 'Documentation' window so it won't still use one allowed activation.
If you need more activations for some reason just contact us.



Q: How can i recover my lost license key?

A:

You should have received an e-mail by 'Paddle' with your license key after purchase. If you did not get this e-mail or lost your license, please send an e-mail to <help@paddle.com>. Paddle handle everything related to the purchase and activation of MacUpdater, including recovery of lost serial number they should be able to help you quickly