8 Replies Latest reply: Mar 21, 2012 8:57 AM by varjak paw
cathy fasano Level 2 Level 2 (340 points)

Simple thing...  You log in to a machine remotely, or you use the session already logged in by the user, and run Software Update.  It goes to Apple's servers, compares software versions, and then you can see a list of which updates need to be pushed out to the machine, and so you cancel out of Software Update and use the ARD install function to push them out.

 

So is there another way to find out which updates are available and needed for some particular machine, which does not involve hijacking the user's screen in order to run an application?

  • 1. Re: Is there a simple way to do a software update check without disturbing the user?
    varjak paw Level 10 Level 10 (169,765 points)

    Run the "List All Software Updates" under the Miscellaneous section of the Templates in the Send UNIX Command window.

     

    Regards.

  • 2. Re: Is there a simple way to do a software update check without disturbing the user?
    cathy fasano Level 2 Level 2 (340 points)

    Wow, thanks!  Exactly what I need.  ...and I see there are a whole bunch of useful things on the template menu that I never suspected were there!

  • 3. Re: Is there a simple way to do a software update check without disturbing the user?
    varjak paw Level 10 Level 10 (169,765 points)

    And you can also create your own templates with just about any UNIX command. That adds a lot of functionality into ARD that's not built in.

     

    Cheers.

  • 4. Re: Is there a simple way to do a software update check without disturbing the user?
    Joe Pyrdek Level 1 Level 1 (135 points)

    Another thing you can do that would allow you to check the update status of third party apps (Firifox, Fetch, etc.) on a remote system is using the reports function "Software Version" check.  Just click on Reports and select this from the drop dwn menu.

     

    If you have you computer set up with all the updates current for all the apps, both Apple and non-Apple, the software version report will tell you if the software you selected to be checked (max of ten selections) is older, same as or newer than the version on your computer.  Note however that if you are going between an Intel system (yours) and a PPC system (remote) this mode does not hold up so well because of different software versions needed to run the same program on different processors.

     

    You can select which versions ito check are installed on the remote system at the last time the automated report is run (default value)  or you can force a new report by using the check box.  If you do go this update report now it will take significantly longer to complete the scan.

     

    This is for the software difference report.  There is also a "software version" report that offers the ability to check out many more things on the computer but I have never had any sucess using that particular report.  The ARD just seems to go into a permanent "waiting" state.

     

    You  may want to check out this link:

    images.apple.com/remotedesktop/pdf/ARD_Admin_Guide_v3.3.pdf

  • 5. Re: Is there a simple way to do a software update check without disturbing the user?
    DOLAdmin Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Cathy -

     

    Where does one go to get the updates you speak of to be pushed out to a given machine?  I'm having problems finding useful step by step examples.

     

    Can either of you, Joe (or anyone) suggest a good place to find example packages or techniques for packaging third party apps?  Adobe Flash and Reader examples would be helpful.  Thanks.

  • 6. Re: Is there a simple way to do a software update check without disturbing the user?
    varjak paw Level 10 Level 10 (169,765 points)

    The updates Cathy was asking about are the standard Mac OS X updates from Apple. You can download most of them from Apple and push them out via ARD, or just have each system check for and install separately via the UNIX command.

     

    Flash Player already comes in a package. You just have to "show package contents" on the Adobe installer and look in the Resources folder for the Adobe Flash Player.pkg file. That can be pushed out by ARD without problems. Many other applications similarly have a hidden .pkg file. Firefox is a single file and can be pushed out via normal file copy.

     

    For making your own packages for applications that don't use Apple's installer, here are some resources for starters:

     

    http://developer.apple.com/library/mac/#documentation/DeveloperTools/Conceptual/ PackageMakerUserGuide/Introduction/Introduction.html

     

    http://macdevcenter.com/pub/a/mac/2003/09/16/packagemaker.html

     

    http://s.sudre.free.fr/Software/Iceberg.html

     

    http://www.jamfsoftware.com/products/composer

     

    Regards.

  • 7. Re: Is there a simple way to do a software update check without disturbing the user?
    DOLAdmin Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    varjak thanks!  Are the ".pkg" installs as simple as that - "pushing them out via ARD"?  Just... push them out? Does the program handle eveything behind the scenes?

     

    Also can I just push out 'dmg files from Apple?  For example, "MacOSXUpd10-1.7.3Supp.dmg" which was just released".

    (Note: I am currently waiting to receive a test machine)...

     

    Take the Safari 5.1.4 update for example.  Yesterday I tried pushing out the .pkg file for that to a lion server (only machine I had to test with) and got back a "completed but failed on one package: Safari 5.1.4 LionManual.pkg" error.  I know things are going to happen from machine to machine - .pkg to .pkg but for .pkg files in general, is it safe to just push them out the door? 

     

    I realize my question(s) may also be found in the resources you've generoulsy provided so I will have a look. Thanks again.

  • 8. Re: Is there a simple way to do a software update check without disturbing the user?
    varjak paw Level 10 Level 10 (169,765 points)

    Are the ".pkg" installs as simple as that - "pushing them out via ARD"?  Just... push them out? Does the program handle eveything behind the scenes?

     

    Normally yes, it's just that simple, at least when it's a single package; metapackages can be more difficult.

     

    Also can I just push out 'dmg files from Apple?  For example, "MacOSXUpd10-1.7.3Supp.dmg" which was just released".

     

    Not the DMG file itself; you have to push out the package the .DMG file contains.

     

    Take the Safari 5.1.4 update for example.  Yesterday I tried pushing out the .pkg file for that to a lion server (only machine I had to test with) and got back a "completed but failed on one package: Safari 5.1.4 LionManual.pkg" error.  I know things are going to happen from machine to machine - .pkg to .pkg but for .pkg files in general, is it safe to just push them out the door?

     

    Usually yes. I don't know why that one package failed, but ARD can be a bit persnickety. You do have to make sure that the package is applicable to the system you're pushing it to; often there are different versions for different released of Mac OS X. But that shouldn't have been the case for Safari, though the system requirements for the Safari 5.1.4 installer make no mention of Lion Server (I presume your Lion Server is at 10.7.3, yes?). I can't find a different version, though.

     

    Regards.