Once you have installed an application on your system, you will probably forget to check whether any new version has been released, unless the software comes with an auto update tool. However, I’m not comfortable of applications accessing and downloading stuff from the Internet without my knowledge. So I usually disable the auto update feature in all application and block it through my firewall. I’m not paranoid and I believe it’s a good practice to block any application in the firewall that does not specifically requires an Internet connection to function.
If you follow the same practice, then you will find UpdateStar very useful. UpdateStar is a free software application that uses their specialized search engine to detect what applications are running on your computer and informs you if any of those applications have newer updates available. It then offers you information and download options and allows you to download, install and uninstall the programs right from within the application. This makes UpdateStar one of the finest replacement for Windows Add/Remove tool. UpdateStar’s database currently recognizes and provides update information for 135,000 software programs that includes freeware, shareware, demos and commercial software.
UpdateStar also provides a number of free UpdateStar Packs which are collections of the latest recommended software and essential freeware. These packs are small files that has to be imported into UpdateStar, which then downloads and installs the software included in the pack. These packs offer an easy way to quickly install necessary applications on a new or freshly installed Windows PC.
If you wish not to install UpdateStar, you can still utilize it’s services by searching for product updates on their search engine. UpdateStar’s database is maintained by users who voluntarily submit update information.