Working in the tech support industry, I've worked with everyone from the super tech savvy to the computer illiterate. One thing I've noticed with people of all skill levels is that many people are afraid to update software, hardware, firmware, etc. You name it; they don't want to do it. Here, I will share with you why you should update and some best practices.
Updates: They Won't Hurt You
A leading reason for update aversion is fear. I have heard so many stories from noob users and power users both, who have had an update go bad, and now they are nervous about updating anything. Don't let one bad experience ruin the beautiful world of updates.
Software companies only put out updates to do two things:
Fix bugs or issues with the program
Sometimes they will release an update that does both!
I can't think of a single company or organization that puts out updates with any bad intentions. Now granted, it's impossible to please everyone, but most companies perform tests and get customer feedback before making the updates live and opt for those the majority of people like and find easy to use.
Backups Allow You to Update Confidently
There are some precautions you can take to give yourself some extra security and peace of mind. Almost updates will tell you what improvements or changes are going to be.
If you see an update you aren't sure about, make a backup of your computer. If it’s a program that contains data, export that to another location for easy access. If it's something you have to log into, write down your username and password so that you can log back in if it resets.
If You Aren't Updating, You Are Missing Out
You may be comfortable with outdated software because after all, you know where all the buttons and settings are. However, you may get left behind as the program and the rest of the internet move on with updates. As companies update websites to keep up with current trends in design and functionality, your outdated browser or software will not be able to use the total functionality of the site.
It is also extremely important to keep up-to-date to prevent viruses or malware from making unwanted incursions into your computer. It's easier for hackers and identity thieves to find exploits in older versions of software that do not have updated defenses.
Technology and software update rapidly, with most shelf-life estimates being six months. That may seem like a lot to keep up with, but luckily, when one software publisher finds a fresh new feature, many companies will imitate them. That means if you master it on one program, those skills will translate into other applications.
The best thing you can do when attempting to learn something new is to find the button that will allow going back to the previous screen. This will allow you to explore menu options and features without having to worry about making accidental settings changes.
To Sum It Up:
Be safe - Make sure you read what the update will do, and what’s it going to change. Make a backup if you don't feel confident about them.
Be brave - Go ahead and install those updates!
Be open minded - Remember these updates are not just to make your life miserable, they are put out to make things easier.
Be current - Make sure you can take full advantage of all the new things that software and websites have to offer.
Be Exploratory - Try things you have not before, change some settings, see what’s new and if you like it or not. The back button is your friend.
Do those updates and go forth to conquer the Internet!