How to update your computer’s software

Keeping your software up to date is crucial. Here’s our ‘how-to guide’.

updating software

Knowing how to keep your software updated can improve your computer's stability and security and let you know about new features.

Some software will update automatically by default, but other programs rely on you checking for updates and beginning the process yourself.

The most important software to keep updated is your operating system, as this is where security threats can do the most damage.

Mac OS X
To update Mac OS X, open the App Store, then click the ‘Updates’ icon. OS X updates will be at the top of the list of available updates. On the right side of the screen, there are buttons to update individual apps or to apply all available updates for all the software on your computer.

 

Windows
To update Windows, start by clicking on the Control Panel. If you have trouble locating the Control Panel, it will appear by clicking the Windows button in the bottom left-hand corner of your screen.

In the search panel of the Control Panel type update. This will bring up Windows Update. Directly underneath that you can click the Check for updates line and then the search will begin. After a moment if there are any updates available it will prompt you to install them.

Depending on the size and quantity of the updates this can take a while, but it is safe to leave your computer and do something else while the updates are installing. Once it is finished it will prompt you to restart your computer and then you are up to date.

Updating apps
Many apps automatically check for updates when you open them, and some others will alert you about updates without even opening the program. The apps and programs that it is most important to keep updated are your web browsers and anti-virus software, as these present the biggest security threats. You should be able to search for updates manually by either going into the settings menu or the help menu.

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