Software Updates


We need a design for how updates for the operating system and applications are handled.


It is important that an OS manage updates for itself and hosted applications. Goals include:

  • Attempt to keep system current, safe, and secure while minimizing disruption of the user
  • Never do harm - be failsafe

Relevant Art

OS X 10.6 shot 2011-09-06 at 5.44.30 PM.png

This is what users generally see, when Show Details is pressed, we get the detailed view below.


Windows 7


iOS 5


Tentative Design


Intended Behaviour

  • Installing an update that says it requires a reboot will only install on reboot and ask you to reboot now.
  • If the app is running it would ask if it is ok to restart the app for you after it installs the update.


  • As far as I know, GNOME OS is the whole user experience, not a new Linux distribution. Currently I'm using Arch Linux, and I love its repositories and the tools (pacman/yaourt) to get and update the software of my system. When my system gets updates I decide if I want to reboot now or later. In fact, I do not need to reboot and I decide when to do the update. So how Software Updates fits in the repositories paradigm? Is it a replacement? Just a front-end that I could setup? --TaeSandoval

    • This update mechanism is a front-end to the systemd's 'Offline System Updates' feature if your distribution implements it. On Fedora for example you can use yum or offline updates as you like. --RobertPrömper

  • Only problem I see is the reboot before applying the system updates, user expectations for 'install updates and shut down' aren't met if there is additional attention needed for rebooting the system, disk encryption password for example. --RobertPrömper

    • Yes, I thought that these behaviour was a bug. Better message is simply 'reboot, install updates and shut down' --OscarGarcia

See Also

Design/OS/SoftwareUpdates (last edited 2015-10-14 13:26:16 by OscarGarcia)