Venture beyond the Mac App Store

By Serenity Caldwell, Macworld |  Software, Mac App Store, Mac apps

Once youve installed an application downloaded from the Web, you may wonder what to do with the installer. If its a freely available installera piece of shareware, for example, or an update that you can download again later from the publishers websiteyou can toss it into the Trash.

However, you may want to hang on to some installers. For instance, if youve purchased a piece of software on the Internet and can download that software only for a limited time, keep the installer in case you need to reinstall the software later. You might even want to burn it onto a CD for safekeeping. Hanging on to your installers also makes sense if you have a slow Internet connection. Youll likely want to avoid repeating a six-hour download.

From a disc: Though most Mac software programs are now purchased as downloads, its still possible to get CD or DVD versions of some programs if you wish. However, if you have a Mac with no disc driveand no external drive with which to read a discyou have two choices. If you have another Mac with a disc drive, you can insert the disc into that machine and use your Macs Remote Disc feature to access the installer. But if your only Mac does not have a disc drive, you may be better off going to the Apple Store and having an employee help you get the software onto your computer. (And, in the future, you may want to order only software that directly downloads to your Mac.) Assuming you do have a CD/DVD drive, here are some basics for installing software from a disc.

Most software you purchase on a CD or DVD will come with an installer application. If you have a CD/DVD drive built into your computer, insert the disc, wait for the image to load, and then double-click the installer, which walks you through the steps for installing the software.

Some discs may instead display an icon of the program along with a note that tells you to drag the icon to your Applications folder. To quickly put the software in the right place, open a new Finder window; this exposes the windows sidebar, where youll see the Applications folder. Then just drag the applications icon to this folder.

Update your software

Updating nonMac App Store software is a tad more difficult than updating software from the Mac App Store, but not by much. Most applications these days have automatic updaters, which check in every so often to look for updates. If an update is available, the program will usually prompt you via a dialog box and a link to go download the update. (Some apps even update in place, with no visit to a browser necessary.) Those that dont automatically check for updates may have a menu item that reads Check For Updates, which lets you do so manually.


Originally published on Macworld |  Click here to read the original story.
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