Security – The reason it can seem if you are getting frequent updates is because of security measures. Exploits and vulnerabilities are often discovered over time, and developers work tirelessly to make sure you are secure when using their software by rolling out regular patches. So, when you see an update, get annoyed and ignore it, remember you are potentially leaving yourself open to attack! Take the NHS for example, who fell victim to the WannaCry ransomware attack in 2017. One of the reasons they got caught out was due to the fact the they were using older, outdated versions of windows and other software they were using.
Usability – In addition to security updates, any untoward issues such as bugs are squashed which will mean that programs are less likely to crash or provide you with bizarre errors or conundrums. This is something that will normally be rolled into regular updates in addition to security, to maintain the smooth operation of the software are using. It’s also common to have regular updates when a new piece of software is released to ensure that any potential pitfalls are rectified in a timely manner. Many users will normally have issues that feature across the board when a new piece of software is released, so again, this is a priority when receiving an update,
New features – Updates will oftentimes (but not always) provide you with new features and functionality. One of the nicer elements of updating, and more commonly found with large, “feature” updates, are new features! This can vary from a new intuitive interface to a really useful tool being added. These new additions can often be added sparingly and in bunches, as they are generally worked on for a longer period of time (and thus are sometimes less urgent) than security and bug fixes because of their urgency.
Hardware Efficiency – With new hardware, and to certain degree existing hardware, engaging in updates can be a benefit. This isn’t universal, and in some cases, this may even make things worse, but in general older hardware can sometimes benefit from updates to help increase the efficiency of software being run on dated hardware.
Time – Believe it or not, by automatically updating, or manually updating frequently, you will save lot of time in the long run. Think of updates as rubbish. The longer you leave emptying a bin, the more it will fill up and become unpleasant and difficult to empty. The same could be said for updates. Do them frequently, and you’ll be able to operate without issue or major interruption. Neglect or reject them, and you’ll likely find that when you do come around to eventually updating that they’ve all compounded together to give you a ginormous, 52-hour update that will leave you without a computer for the foreseeable as it updates.
Overall, you can see that it’s very important to update regularly and when you are asked to. With larger, feature updates, it is of course worth reviewing what’s being changed and why. Again, with larger updates, you may wish to hold fire in case of issue. There is some sense in this, as diving straight into an update the very nanosecond it’s released can sometimes catch you out. Contrarily however, if you wait months or even years to complete an update, you are essentially increasing your security risk, at an intense increase. So, although you may want to exercise caution in the short term, once the immediate aftermath of a feature update has passed, it’s in your best interest to update. As time ticks on, vulnerabilities will soar for dated versions.
To get assistance with updating, or if you would like to learn more, visit our website or contact us on 0800 6521 365.