How do you make sure apps are up-to-date on your computer?
With OS X, the App Store has provided an easy way to keep track of updates to various applications and make sure you're always running the latest and greatest software.
However, not all the apps on my computer have been purchased through the App Store. And this obviously doesn't help with Windows applications. There are a number of third party applications that have their own update modules -- but these don't generally run unless you open up the app. So, if there's some app hanging out on my hard drive that I never open, it's not likely I'm going to figure out there's an update that adds a shiny new feature.
On Windows, OS X, and even Linux, what's the best way to catalog your list of applications and keep things up-to-date? AppFresh (for Mac) was always an interesting solution pre-App Store, though they now charge $15 for this service!
However, personally, I just stick with the built-in automatically check for updates feature in every app. I honestly can't think of any app on my Mac not from the App Store that doesn't have that feature.
Honestly, I can't figure out my Windows 8 box(es) though. I think all my metro apps are auto-updating. I check the store once in a while and don't see updates. Of course in desktop mode there is the typical notifications like Geforce and java updates that pop up in the system tray.
`apt-get update; apt-get upgrade`
I don't even try to keep stuff up-to-date on my Mac at the office since I use almost nothing from the app store and get everything from outside it. If an app doesn't have an updater built in, chances are it never gets updated until something breaks.
On my own computers I use a service that I resell to my customers that keeps all their applications and Windows updated. I bundle it with antivirus and web filtering as a subscription service. I just put my own computer on it too because I could get it for free. I'm not sure what I'd use otherwise.
But as others have pointed out, this is one of the nice things about the "app-ification" of desktop operating system programs. There are plenty of downsides, though.
In Linux it's pretty damn easy thanks to package managers. They'll bug the hell out of you every damn time you unlock the screen about new updates. It's both great and annoying.