Why so many SUMo updates?

Post Reply
User avatar
ander
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Nov 14, 2014 2:48 am

Why so many SUMo updates?

Post by ander » Wed Jun 12, 2019 9:50 pm

Sorry if this has already been asked... I looked, but didn't see anything similar.

As far as I understand, SUMo it scans your PC for installed software, checks it against an online version database (one maintained by KC Softwares, or otherwise?), then shows the results.

But when I run SUMo, it often announces a new version of itself is available, and directs me to download it.

If SUMo's features were being changed or added, that'd make sense. But aside from occasional obvious GUI changes, it usually appears the same.

So why must SUMo itself be updated so often, when it does basically the same thing each time? If it needs new or additional details about the software it checks, can't it get them online, along with the other info it accesses?

Thanks!

scheff
Posts: 92
Joined: Tue Apr 16, 2019 3:00 pm
Location: DE

Re: Why so many SUMo updates?

Post by scheff » Thu Jun 13, 2019 3:57 pm

I'm not affiliated with KC Softwares, just a (partially satisfied) user of some of its products.

More and more organizations changed resp. change their development process to become agile with the consequence of more often releases allowing shorter reaction times and quicker user feed back. So many users welcome this change.

Other users prefer not to update a product and service they're satisfied, running and using and to plan and schedule updates. For such scheduling and planning, KC Softwares provides its roadmap (https://www.kcsoftwares.com/bugs/roadmap_page.php , project section SUMo) which includes assumed change implementations and schedules not promised ones. The realized ones can be found in its change log (https://www.kcsoftwares.com/bugs/changelog_page.php , project section SUMo ). In the change log, you may see which changes are bug fixes, which one translations (GUI), and which one feature changes resp. new features.

Some software changes require changes on client (your PC running SUMo) and server side (SUMo server with its database and web server). I.e. its grouping capacity is still very limited and are a typical example for such changes. Further grouping capacities are planned as long term (not before spring 2021).

SUMo doesn't force you to update. But it has no configuration option yet to switch between announcement, installation and ignoring yet. If you prefer not to follow each update, you've to close the according information popup window each time that it checks for available update which is at its start by default. You may disable this start behaviour via options according to your preference. While this may be appropriate for minor updates, you should follow major updates. Sadly, SUMo does not yet provide such a configuration option if it shall inform about every of its updates or only major updates. This means that currently, it informs about every update while you may prefer only major updates.

Kyle_Katarn
Site Admin
Posts: 1303
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 8:13 pm

Re: Why so many SUMo updates?

Post by Kyle_Katarn » Fri Jun 14, 2019 7:04 am

Very clear answer, nothing to add.

Change log is directly available from the "?" menu, but I understand that the current way of notification makes no difference between a major function step (5.8-5.9) from a maintenance update (5.9.0-5.9.1).

Let's think about it. Do not hesitate to open a feature request in the bug tracker if you have a suggestion. There is already one open to have the chance log displayed on the update notification pop-up (ongoing)

User avatar
ander
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Nov 14, 2014 2:48 am

Re: Why so many SUMo updates?

Post by ander » Tue Jul 09, 2019 5:59 am

Hey guys,
scheff wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 3:57 pm
I'm not affiliated with KC Softwares, just a (partially satisfied) user of some of its products... More and more organizations changed resp. change their development process to become agile with the consequence of more often releases allowing shorter reaction times and quicker user feed back. So many users welcome this change...
Thanks for your reply! Unfortunately, even though I'm a tech writer with a lot of IT experience, I couldn't understand what you meant. (I'm guessing that English an additional language for you, and that you used an online translator for at least some of it?)

I understand the development process, updates, and so on. What I don't understand is, why would SUMo's basic functionality—checking versions of installed software, comparing it online, showing results—change so much that it needed such frequent updates? They seem to happen every couple of weeks.

If there are actual detection changes, changes in company names, or changes in other software details, can't SUMo download them before it runs the check? I mean, since it's going online anyway, to check the versions.
Kyle_Katarn wrote:
Fri Jun 14, 2019 7:04 am
Very clear answer, nothing to add...
You must be a lot smarter than I am—or maybe you're just more familiar with SUMo's inner workings, so it's easier for you to interpret such things. ;?)
Kyle_Katarn wrote:
Fri Jun 14, 2019 7:04 am
Change log is directly available from the "?" menu, but I understand that the current way of notification makes no difference between a major function step (5.8-5.9) from a maintenance update (5.9.0-5.9.1)...


Another thing I don't understand: Why does SUMo do a complete check, and then mention a new version of itself is available? Wouldn't it make more sense for the update message to appear first? You could always include the option for the user to ignore the "new version" message and continue. (SUMo would show the message again, the next time it was run.)
Kyle_Katarn wrote:
Fri Jun 14, 2019 7:04 am
Do not hesitate to open a feature request in the bug tracker if you have a suggestion. There is already one open to have the chance log displayed on the update notification pop-up (ongoing)...
That seems like a good idea! (E.g. a scrollable text box in the message window.) Cheers, A.

Kyle_Katarn
Site Admin
Posts: 1303
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 8:13 pm

Re: Why so many SUMo updates?

Post by Kyle_Katarn » Tue Jul 09, 2019 9:10 am

Thanks !

Full change log is available on our bug tracker. I plan to have changes displayed on the update notification window.

We usually update SUMo detection engine every 2 weeks / monthly in order to provide incremental improvement to users. But of course you can delay / postpone is needed. Thanks !!

scheff
Posts: 92
Joined: Tue Apr 16, 2019 3:00 pm
Location: DE

Re: Why so many SUMo updates?

Post by scheff » Tue Jul 09, 2019 6:01 pm

ander wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2019 5:59 am
scheff wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 3:57 pm
I'm not affiliated with KC Softwares, just a (partially satisfied) user of some of its products... More and more organizations changed resp. change their development process to become agile with the consequence of more often releases allowing shorter reaction times and quicker user feed back. So many users welcome this change...
Thanks for your reply! Unfortunately, even though I'm a tech writer with a lot of IT experience, I couldn't understand what you meant. (I'm guessing that English an additional language for you, and that you used an online translator for at least some of it?)

I understand the development process, updates, and so on. What I don't understand is, why would SUMo's basic functionality—checking versions of installed software, comparing it online, showing results—change so much that it needed such frequent updates? They seem to happen every couple of weeks.
You're (partially) right. I'm not a native speaker. And no, I don't use any online translator. But I've to admit that my last quoted sentence wasn't formulated smart. It meant that software publisher organizations release more frequently after changing to a more agile development process compared to traditional development process. The advantage is quicker user feed back which in turn may influence future development.

And it seems to me that we use the same terms for different functionality. So I describe the fundamental functionality as scanning and detecting "installed" software (whatever installed may mean), checking detected installed versions versus online known versions, and reporting. The scanning and detection will usually be performed less frequently as only needed after installing new (or removing installed) software. Have you already noticed that you may tune SUMo to scan and detect also portable software if you have it on your computer, or that you may filter out software you're not interested to know its update state as you don't intend to pay for the publishers updates?

What do you mean when you write of checking versions?

What I call checking versions is not done locally but remotely instead. That's probably what you call comparing it online.

It seems that you're looking only at the fundamental functionality, probably of some abstract level. This is not much related to any needs nor frequency of updates. The latter is more determined by desired future enhancements and found bugs. As anybody may register to report bugs, these reports may vary largely in detail resp. abstraction, quality, perception and scope, seldom of disappointment. So if you take a look at the bugs reported and not yet closed nor resolved, you understand that there are a lot. Many are minor ones. The amount of work needed to address may vary largely too and does not necessarily relate to the severeness or category of a bug. Some bugs are in the design of SUMo and will require redesign, major work effort and will be indicated by major version change. So this explains the need for much of change and hence updates.

A different point of your expressed desire is to distinguish between minor maintenance updates on one side and functional enhancements and major maintenance updates on the other side, if I understand correctly, in order to become able to ignore the minor updates and limit your SUMo program updates on functional enhancements and major maintenance updates. Such a release and update policy seems to me not yet implemented and KC Softwares welcomes suggestions how to move into that direction preferable via Mantis Bug tracking tool.
ander wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2019 5:59 am
If there are actual detection changes, changes in company names, or changes in other software details, can't SUMo download them before it runs the check? I mean, since it's going online anyway, to check the versions.
I don't understand. What do you refer to with the term "them" in SUMo download them before it runs the check?

As far as I understand your sentence, you seem to refer to detection changes, changes in company names or changes in other software details. As far as I understand the current design, these features and their attribute handling are hard coded influencable via some SUMo configuration options. I'm among the users asking for some major redesign but these don't address these attributes. And currently, I can't imagine to what kind of detection changes you refer which may be implemented via which kind of download without an update of SUMo itself. May you provide some examples?

Concerning company names the current design of SUMo requires an update of SUMo itself (and some other changes remotely). I agree that with a redesign, this need may become obsolete as evaluation is done on server side, not on client side. The current design offloads some preprocessing onto the client side with the reported implication. So do you propose to consider that server side may push definitions for company names onto the client side before starting the check operation so that SUMo may use such a downloaded definition set for preprocessing instead of a probably hard coded one?
ander wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2019 5:59 am
Another thing I don't understand: Why does SUMo do a complete check, and then mention a new version of itself is available? Wouldn't it make more sense for the update message to appear first? You could always include the option for the user to ignore the "new version" message and continue. (SUMo would show the message again, the next time it was run.)

Cheers, A.
So again, I don't understand what you mean by a "complete check".
What I call so is not done before checking if an update of SUMo itself exists. That is configurable in SUMo options. And I configured it on my site to check for available update of itself on startup of SUMo (not on startup of my computer). That's my preference. And so it does.

When SUMo detects an update, it provides the choice to (temporarily) ignore the update and continue with the not-updated local version of SUMo. It doesn't say so. But that's what happens if you choose to neither update automatically nor manually.

Kyle_Katarn
Site Admin
Posts: 1303
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 8:13 pm

Re: Why so many SUMo updates?

Post by Kyle_Katarn » Sat Jul 27, 2019 9:09 pm

Any further question on this ?

Post Reply