#20 'Search for updates' feature

open
None
5
2014-04-24
2008-01-11
No

Hi - thanks for this definitely useful software.

Would be nice if GrandPerspective had a mean to search for new GrandPerspective versions online directly from the app.

First step could be to simply notify the user when new versions are available. Checks could be triggered manually or at a specified interval (e.g. every week or every month).

Second step would be to implement a mean to update GrandPerspective without the need leave the app (i.e. to go on Sourceforge's website). Maybe you could use code from Cyberduck or another open source software to help you start with this?

In all cases, thanks and have fun! :-)
Alex

Discussion

  • Erwin Bonsma

    Erwin Bonsma - 2008-01-15

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    As this is not a feature that I tend to use myself (obviously I do not need it for GrandPerspective, but I do not use it for other applications either), I had not yet considered adding it, but I'll give it a thought. Having said that, I am slightly averse to applications that "phone home", and especially for a small utility, it seems a bit of an overkill. Nevertheless, I'll think about it.

    Cheers,

    Erwin

     
  • Nobody/Anonymous

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    Hi Erwin,

    It's incredibly simple to add the 'Sparkle' framework to a cocoa app to enable auto-updating. You can also give the user the choice whether they want the app to check automatically for updates.

    Nowadays I really consider this to be a required feature for any app, even the simplest utilities. In fact, I think it's more important for simple utilities since you don't hear about updates on the major 'news' sites.

    Thanks,
    Jeff

     
  • Erwin Bonsma

    Erwin Bonsma - 2008-06-15

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    Hi Jeff,

    Thanks for pointing out Sparkle to me. I had a look at it, but am not yet convinced I should use it in GrandPerspective. My reasons are as follows:

    1) Using Sparkle would make the application dependent on 3rd-party software. You have to weigh the Pros against the Cons. Yes, you get the nice auto-update functionality, but also the bugs. Nothing against Sparkle (this holds for pretty much all 3rd-party software), but its latest release fixed 11 bugs. Had GrandPerspective 0.9.11 been using Sparkle, the number of known bugs (you never know how many unknown ones there are), would have more than tripled. These are bugs that users would blame on GrandPerspective (a feature of Sparkle is that you use it transparently), whereas I think one of the strenghts of GrandPerspective is its reliablity/stability (okay, ignore the recent 0.9.12.1 bug fix release.... ;-).

    2) Using Sparkle would increase the size of GrandPerspective with 65%. That's quite a lot for "only" adding automatic update functionality.

    3) There's no real need. If users are interested to be notified about new GrandPerspective releases, they have many options already. Subscribe to the mailing list, monitor the releases at Sourceforge, or be notified by way of the versiontracker.com, macupdate.com or osx.iusethis.com websites. This furthermore has the advantage that you get a notification as soon as the application is released, not a couple of weeks later when you next start up GrandPerspective again (it's not an application that most users will be using daily).

    So, I am still not convinced, but I will keep this Feature Request open so that others can give their feedback (and so that I can reconsider it again later).

    Cheers,

    Erwin

     
  • lid

    lid - 2008-12-12

    I'd love to see Sparkle added to this app. I've been using the app semi-regularly, but I haven't noticed that it was updated since 0.9.9. Sparkle would help with this problem. I don't need to be notified of every release, but I would like to be notified of updates when I use the app.

    Sparkle has a huge number of applications that use it (including one of my own!), which I think is a testament to its reliability. And although 65% seems like a large increase in the app size, a couple MB really not that big when hard drives today have reached above 1 TB capacities.

    I'd also be interested in implementing this functionality, if you'd like.

     
  • Erwin Bonsma

    Erwin Bonsma - 2008-12-13

    Hi dustbuster,

    Thanks for the offer on helping implement this functionality. Nevertheless, the implementation effort is not really the issue. I am still of the opinion that the current release notifications are sufficient (given there's a release about once every four months, I can't see that anyone realistically can have a problem with a push-notification mechanism), and that the benefits of using Sparkle do not outweigh the drawbacks in the case of GrandPerspective.

    Cheers,
    Erwin

     
  • Nobody/Anonymous

    Hi,

    Thanks for highly useful app! Just found some videos hiding in an unexpected place and was able to clear some desperately-needed space.

    I second (third, fourth?) the request for some sort of update feature. Most apps have something in that vein these days, and I've come to rely on getting update info (automatically or manually) inside the app itself for third-party software. Email notifications I'm wont to forget: either I get the update email while I'm away from my computer, and then forget about it, or I forget the fact that I'm subscribing to the emails in the first place, and thus search in vain for a 'Check for updates' menu item, before I - by now rather annoyed - go to the web page to check.

    I'd be perfectly happy with a user-initiated check (rather than automatic weekly, daily or whatnot checks), and I don't mind if the notification says 'click here to go to sourceforge to download the update', rather than incorporating a full updater.

    In any case, thanks again for a great app, and thanks for considering our request (one shouldn't complain, but many developers seem to just immediately shut down any feature requests they're sceptical of - their prerogative, I know, but one likes being listened to:))

    Best wishes,

    Toby

     
  • Anonymous - 2013-01-21

    Please add sparkle support!

     
  • esaruoho

    esaruoho - 2013-02-17

    As a user stuck on version 1.3.4, a "check for updates" would definitely be helpful. I now, of course, have 1.5.1, but still - most apps tend to tell me when it's time to get the new one -- I had somehow misguidedly thought that GrandPerspective is not being developed anymore.

     
  • Erwin Bonsma

    Erwin Bonsma - 2013-02-24

    Hi esarucho,

    Good to see you found the new version anyway. I will think about adding this feature, but it's not one that I personally care much about. Of course, I don't need it in my own app, but also in others I tend to find it annoying.

     
  • Anonymous - 2013-02-26

    The functionality is easy to add with Sparkle, and is unobtrusive to me. Honestly, a push-notification (I presume you mean the little-advertised email notification list) is more annoying to me - I really only want to know about updates when I run the application. Cheers!

     


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