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Is there a way to get combo updates from Software Update Server in Mac OS X server 10.6?

Posted on 2010-11-11
Last Modified: 2013-11-11
Is there a way to get combo updates from Software Update Server in Mac OS X server 10.6?

The combo updates are there (and are presumably delivered by software update when a machine is more than one incremental update away from the current version - i.e. from 10.6.3 to 10.6.5).

It would be nice to be able to force the combo update in other circumstances.
Question by:nxnw
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Expert Comment

by:Parrish Chamberlain
ID: 34120461
The OS X combo update can be used  to bring your system up to date, and replace most of the key system software files with the most current versions.  Unlike the incremental approach used in the Software Update system, the combo update provides a full package.

The issue with combo updates is that they're huge. The  Mac OS X v10.6.4 Update (Combo) is around  900 MB in size and future updates most likely will be larger.
To apply a ombo update, locate the file on Apple's web site, download it to your Mac, and then run the update, this  will install the newest system on your Mac.
Locate the OS X combo update you require
Apple keeps all of the OS X combo updates available on the Apple support site. A quick way to locate the right combo updateaccess the OS X support download site, click the link for the version you require  then set the view option to alphabetical,  scan the listing for the combo update you want to apply. All of the combo updates will have the word "combo" in their names. If you don't see the word combo, it's not the full installer.

Here are quick links tothe latest  combo updates for the last 3 versions of OS X:

Mac OS X 10.6.4 http://macs.about.com/gi/o.htm?zi=1/XJ&zTi=1&sdn=macs&cdn=compute&tm=560&gps=504_549_1676_821&f=00&tt=13&bt=0&bts=1&zu=http%3A//support.apple.com/kb/DL1048

Mac OS X 10.5.8 Combo Update http://macs.about.com/gi/o.htm?zi=1/XJ&zTi=1&sdn=macs&cdn=compute&tm=600&gps=520_587_1676_821&f=00&tt=13&bt=0&bts=1&zu=http%3A//support.apple.com/kb/DL866

Mac OS X 10.4.11 Combo Update (Intel) http://macs.about.com/gi/o.htm?zi=1/XJ&zTi=1&sdn=macs&cdn=compute&tm=630&gps=537_622_1676_821&f=00&tt=13&bt=0&bts=1&zu=http%3A//support.apple.com/kb/DL171

Mac OS X 10.4.11 Combo Update (PPC) http://macs.about.com/gi/o.htm?zi=1/XJ&zTi=1&sdn=macs&cdn=compute&tm=666&gps=536_657_1676_821&f=00&tt=13&bt=0&bts=1&zu=http%3A//support.apple.com/kb/DL170

The combotDMG files will mount on your Mac as if they were removable media, such as a CD or DVD. If the .dmg file doesn't mount automatically, double-click the downloaded file you saved to your Mac.

Once the .dmg file is mounted; you will see a single installation package. Double-click the installation package to start the install process, and follow the on-screen prompts
LVL 12

Author Comment

ID: 34120616
Thank you for you detailed comment. I already know how to find and download updates from Apple, however.

My issue is that my OS X server has already downloaded the gargantuan 1 GB+ updates, and they are already residing in my Software Update Server data store. It would be convenient if I could get it over my gigabit network rather than over my 6 megabit ISP.

Does anyone know if that can be done?

Expert Comment

by:Parrish Chamberlain
ID: 34126863
Do you want other Macs on your network to update files from the Server?

I could write it all out for you , however when I used it for My ARD I went to this site.

It has various options to perform apple updates

If this does not work I will copy my actual script from my Server at work for you to try.
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LVL 12

Author Comment

ID: 34128702
Let me explain. I know how to use this stuff. My software update server works. The clients already update from it. The correct way to do THAT, by the way, is to assign the local URL globally to your bound machines using Workgroup Manager. That is not the issue.

The question I am trying to sort out is like this: Let's say I am already at 10.6.4. Left to its own devices, software update will install the incremental 10.6.5 update, but I want to run the Combo 10.6.5 update installer instead. My software update server has already downloaded the Combo 10.6.5 update. It would be useful if I could run that local copy instead of having to download the 1 GB+ combo installer from Apple again, manually.

Assisted Solution

marook earned 500 total points
ID: 34174033
The image file are in the Update Server storage area!

it's hidden down in:

LVL 12

Accepted Solution

nxnw earned 0 total points
ID: 34235300
Unfortunately, that does not appear to be accurate. There is no image files anywhere in the swupd directory. There is a MacOSXUpdCombo10.6.5.pkg file, but it is much smaller than the identically named file in the combo updater dmg file that one would download from Apple. This is the full directory containing the 10.6.5 client combo update:
      14312 Nov 16 03:02 061-9829.English.dist
      16199 Nov 16 03:02 061-9829.French.dist
      15169 Nov 16 03:02 061-9829.German.dist
      16219 Nov 16 03:02 061-9829.Japanese.dist
  177294230 Nov 16 03:29 MacOSXServerUpdCombo10.6.5.pkg
      17501 Nov 16 03:25 MacOSXServerUpdCombo10.6.5.pkm
      48496 Nov 29 03:02 MacOSXServerUpdCombo10.6.5.smd
      48496 Nov 28 03:02 MacOSXServerUpdCombo10.6.5.smd.previous
  728677822 Nov 16 03:18 MacOSXUpdCombo10.6.5.pkg
     196766 Nov 16 03:02 MacOSXUpdCombo10.6.5.pkm
    1482935 Nov 16 03:29 QuickTimePlayer7ForCombo10.6.5.pkg
       2979 Nov 16 03:29 QuickTimePlayer7ForCombo10.6.5.pkm
    2005341 Nov 16 03:25 RosettaForCombo10.6.5.pkg
        520 Nov 16 03:25 RosettaForCombo10.6.5.pkm
  273681974 Nov 16 03:25 SUBaseSystem10.6.5.pkg
      77195 Nov 16 03:19 SUBaseSystem10.6.5.pkm
   24462130 Nov 16 03:19 X11ForCombo10.6.5.pkg
        745 Nov 16 03:18 X11ForCombo10.6.5.pkm

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Now, it may be that one can run a proper combo upgrade using all or some of these files, but unless there is a definitive resource about how to do it, and the method is not more time and trouble than getting the download directly from Apple, it doesn't seem like a good idea.

Anyone know, for sure, if that is (reasonably) doable? Is there a way to fool the client into doing the combo update?
LVL 12

Author Comment

ID: 34364829
Does anyone know if deleting a receipt would fool the client into doing the combo update (or if trying it would be a really bad idea)?
LVL 12

Author Closing Comment

ID: 34470640
Unfortunately, it looks like:
1. The combo installer resides on the SLS Software Update server only in parts;
2. If there is a reasonable method to fool the client into doing the combo update, nobody who participates here has been able to provide it.

Rather than keep this question open indefinitely, I am closing it and awarding points to marook, whose information may assist someone in the future. Please note, however, that the directory he identifies would be for Leopard server. in Snow Leopard server, the default data store is /var/db/swupd/html/content

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