Managing updates in Google Software Update

Google Software Update is responsible for updating Google applications running on Mac OS X. By default, Google Software Update currently checks for new updates once a day. While this works well for most users, some individuals may desire more control over when updates occur. For these users, Google Software Update offers the ability to change the frequency of update checks or turn off update checks all together.

Update Frequency

If this is a temporary change, make note of your current settings first by executing the following in the Terminal application:

$ defaults read com.google.Keystone.Agent checkInterval

To change how frequently Google Software Update checks for updates, execute the following in the Terminal application:

$ defaults write com.google.Keystone.Agent checkInterval <frequency>

where <frequency> is the elapsed time in seconds between update checks.

To disable Google Software Update from checking for updates, execute the following in the Terminal application:

$ defaults write com.google.Keystone.Agent checkInterval 0

To re-apply the current settings (after changing it to something else) execute the following in the Terminal application:

$ defaults write com.google.Keystone.Agent checkInterval <previous value>

where <previous value> is the value from the read command above.

Manual Updates

Google Software Update also provides a way to manually update all Google software on a user's Mac. Here's how:

  1. In Finder, select Go > Go to Folder.
  2. In the window that appears, enter one of the following locations. It's expected that one of these folders won't be found:
    • /Library/Google/GoogleSoftwareUpdate/GoogleSoftwareUpdate.bundle/Contents/Resources/
    • ~/Library/Google/GoogleSoftwareUpdate/GoogleSoftwareUpdate.bundle/Contents/Resources/
  3. In the folder that opens, double click the file named 'CheckForUpdatesNow.command'.

Terminal will open to run the file. When you see the message '[Process completed]' you can close Terminal. Once this is done, your Google programs will be up to date.

Depending on available updates, you may also see a window appear for Google Software Update.