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Adding software update packages to a hard-drive based OS X installer
Authored by: WhiteDog on Mar 20, '06 05:43:53AM

While this is an elegant solution, besides the awesome complexity of it, I see one serious problem. Apple releases OS related updates of one kind or another every week or so; an install disk image with the update packages included would quickly be out of date and you would have to make a new one regularly to maintain the utility of the process. Unless you do OS installs all day long, it's hard to see the advantage of going to so much trouble to expedite the process.

Having a Tiger install image on a FireWire drive would certainly be useful if you have to do Tiger upgrades frequently. Beyond that, the Combo updates usually make the various incremental updates obsolete. For instance, I recently upgraded an old iMac from X 10.4.2 to 10.4.5. At first Software Update had a slew of recommendations; after applying only the 10.4.5 Combo update, this list shrank to two: iTunes 6.0.4 and the latest security update, both of which, like the Combo update, I had on hand; each ran quickly, even on that sluggish old iMac.

For some time now I've used CDs to archive all the updates I need for Panther and Tiger. I have to update the files on them often; however, because new updates usually replace old ones, I've been able to keep the size down around 700 MBs for each one. I recently got one of those mini external FireWire/USB2 drives to use in place of CDs and, though it offers more capacity, I find I still need the CD versions of the updates from time to time so I continue to keep the update folders small enough to fit on a CD. In my experience doing tech support, flexibility is more important than efficiency.


Don't anthropomorphize computers.
They hate that.

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