Did you try clicking on one of those links in that list? It will take you to a page that gives you exactly those details you are asking for. Here is an example from the latest Quicktime update: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT5261
You can see what Software Update wants to install on your machine by clicking the 'details' button (in the panel that says "There are updates available for your computer"). That shows you a list of all available updates, with checkboxes so you can disable ones you don't want. If you want more control, there is a unix softwareupdate utility you can use.
Apple doesn't force you to accept updates blindly, and it gives reasonably good details about what it's doing for those who care to look. I'm not understanding the problem you're seeing.
Actually that doesn't tell you what the packages are, it just says OS X Security Update as a single item.
It then offers a link for more information which brings us to this page:
The page is very poorly designed. This is what I'm posting about.
I'm seeing Windows Vista updates, Apple TV, Leopard, Lion. Things from 2008.
It would be a trivial matter to instead link directly to the this:
that's the actual thing being installed, that's what I want to see.
I mean they might as well just link here: http://lmgtfy.com/?q=Security+Update+2012-001
LOL, that didn't even work. Google search for the specific package results in:
which links back to the HT1222 page which is the list of EVERYTHING.
> If you want more control, there is a unix softwareupdate utility you can use.
Not for these updates. I can update Dovecot or Apache, but these updates are for core Mac services and tweaks like this:
Apache disabled the 'empty fragment' countermeasure which prevented these attacks. This issue is addressed by providing a configuration parameter to control the countermeasure and enabling it by default.
as a software developer I find it extremely worrying to not be told what packages are being updated and to see a change list.
You can always download the updates manually and run them through Pacifist and/or Suspicious Package.