As an avid command line user, I’m always looking for new and faster ways of doing things. Some of these tasks I remember easily as the are repeated daily. However, some are not. I often find myself forgetting how to preform hand task such as the one I’m going to show you in this post.

How to update your mac from the command line

System updates would usually be performed by going to the app store and clicking update. However, for whatever reason, my mac decideds that its going to take its time opening up the command lines and then waste a little more time deciding what needs updating. Thats why I choose to do this task via the command line.

Heres how to do it.

  1. Open your terminal application of choice (I use Iterm2)
  2. Type the following sudo softwareupdate -ia
  3. Enter you password if prompted

It’s that easy. If you want to see what is available to update before you update, type the following.

softwareupdate -l

No sudo required for this one. If you want to see what other handy commands are available for the softwareupdate tool, try the following:

softwareupdate man


softwareupdate -h

There are some really great tricks with the command line. Most of them like this one, are really quick and easy to accomplish. What are some of your favourite command line tricks? Let us know in the comments.