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Author Topic: Best practices implementing update checking?  (Read 4874 times)


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Best practices implementing update checking?
« on: March 10, 2009, 08:08 AM »
Ok I've added update checking to most of my scripts now over the last half year - and I've never been satisfied with the implementation.

* checking for updates manually - non  intrusive but not always latest version
* automatic checking for updates on statup - always latest version but annoying if don't want to update or not connected to internet
* automatic checking for updates every week or so - good compromise?

Also should the user be prompted before checking for updates? if no in combination with no updates you could do it silently which is better for user, but annoying if update dialog comes up when update is found without user asking for it. if yes then they always have extra prompt even if there's no update..

Seems there's always a negative. Maybe this is worth adding centrally for DcUpdater so that the user can set this once and then all programs respect this.


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Re: Best practices implementing update checking?
« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2009, 08:29 AM »
I think you are right. Various users have various needs and preferences. The best option would be to let each one decide what he wants and what is best for him. But I think that DcUpdater can already do that, doesn't it?

In general I prefer to do updates manually (I like to see what has changed in the program) or to be notified (only notified, no download, no installation) that an update is available.


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Re: Best practices implementing update checking?
« Reply #2 on: April 01, 2009, 11:03 AM »
I'd say it is best to silently check for updates ... then if there are updates
available, take action based on user preferences. That way, they are not
bothered if there are no updates. Of course they could set preferences
for no update checking if they are checking manually.

Also the frequency, once per day, once per boot, once per week ... should
also be based on user preferences.

I think a lack of connection is worth special consideration, so if user
preference is to NOT check updates if there is no internet connection then
an occasional prompt/message should be acceptable if updates could not be
checked in a "while". So, if daily update checking is configured, and it
happens that the update check was not successful because the internet
connection is not available, after a week/month of this a message could be
displayed informing the user that update checking needs to be done.

Also, some programs I use check for updates by themself (rather than using
a stand-alone updater). If an update is required, it shows a yes/no prompt.
If I say no, it forgets about it until the next update (could be months). If I
say yes, it does the update and forces a reboot which is rarely at a good
time. So, I am not happy with either choice. I would prefer it also offer
"Remind me later", and "Update at next re-boot".