[Pdx-pm] program dispersement

Michael G Schwern schwern at pobox.com
Thu Jul 8 14:33:28 CDT 2004

On Wed, Jun 30, 2004 at 10:15:46AM -0700, Thomas J Keller wrote:
> Gretings, 
> This isn't programming. But it is relevant. Once you've got some 
> programs into production on various machines, what are "best practices" 
> for updating and bug fixing? I can't count on my users to do anything 
> but double click a desktop icon. 

Are the various machines under your control?  I assume not.

Most self-updating software these days seems to do something along these 

1) On startup query a built in http URL to get the latest version # & 
   download location.
2) If newer, ask the user if they want to update.
3) If yes, download the installer.
4) Start the installer and quit.  Let the user do the rest.

That's about it.  You can try getting clever by downloading just the diff
between your version and the latest (cvs diff -rOLD_VERSION -rNEW_VERSION)
and patch the existing code, but that's really only useful for really
big apps.

Michael G Schwern        schwern at pobox.com  http://www.pobox.com/~schwern/
But I wore the juice!

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