Important updates for Windows, Chrome, life

Operating systems like Windows and Mac OS update themselves often.  Programs like Firefox and Chrome do it even more frequently.  However it is important to check occasionally to verify your automatic updates are working properly.  This link shows how to check whether your computer is pending updates:

https://oit.williams.edu/announcements/security/os-updates/

Security patches are not to be ignored – the vulnerabilities often are severe enough to allow a remote hacker to take over a computer.  Williams has some security measures in place to protect against such threats, but your home network may not.

Programs like Firefox, Chrome and Microsoft Office also need frequent updates.  Typically these will alert you when they are ready and request that you restart or reload the application.  Follow these instructions to check manually:

https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/update-firefox-latest-release

https://support.google.com/chrome/answer/95414?

OIT does usually recommend waiting on major Mac Operating System updates – these are the ones that come with a name designation, like updating from High Sierra to Mojave.  These updates are more involved and may take hours to complete.   We occasionally find important non-Apple software needs to be updated afterwards to be compatible with these system revisions, so it’s worth waiting a few months before running these.   You can check with OIT if you have any questions about them.