February 12, 2013

Omaha, Google’s Buggy AutoUpdater

Omaha, Google’s buggy autoupdater.

If you use Google Chrome, Google Earth on PC’s, you have already experienced Omaha, Google’s buggy autoupdater.

Autoupdaters are designed to silently deliver the latest update to your computer without interfering with or disrupting what you are doing. You should never notice a well-designed autoupdater.

Not so with Google autoupdater.

Google autoupdater is loud, slow and will upgrade you to even more annoying versions of software without your permission.

Loud & Slow – Google autoupdater will start at odd times and occupy your cpu 100% (usually when you are in the middle of something important). It is slow to update, so the autoupdater will continue to occupy your cpu for a long time. During this time, you cannot do anything else on your computer. In other words, it is a major annoyance.

The only way to make it stop is to kill the autoupdater process (the previous methods does not work)

Permissions - The second major flaw in Google’s autoupdater, it does not get your permission before installing a new version on your computer.

Recently, the new versions of Chrome have been incredibly buggy (they do not handle Flash content properly) but you don’t get a say in whether to install them. Google’s autoupdater will force install the new versions of Chrome delivering a truly bad experience (in comparison, even Firefox delivers a wonderful experience).

Next time your computer slows down a lot, you know it is Google Omaha in the background degrading your user experience.

Google needs to redesign Omaha keeping the user experience in mind (check Omaha technical details).

Google Omaha autoupdater is not alone in delivering a bad experience (not an excuse for Google to deliver bad experience); Microsoft Windows updater behaves the same.

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