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Dr. John

Excessive size of update download - again

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Today I tried after several days lapse to update my copy of Asquared Free. I was presented with a download of nearly 57 MB. I went ahead and downloaded it - which on my nominal 56K dialup connection (nothing else available where I live, on a farm in a tiny village, the actual connection speed never exceeds 45.2K) took more than four hours. The download stopped at 95% completion, and then after a while said I need to restart Asquared to load the new modules. When I tried that, it said some file signatures did not match, did I want to update. I said yes. This time the download was only about 5 MB, which seemed reasonable for that situation (the first pass download not quite complete). After finishing that download, I got the "Ikarus signatures not updated" message saying the update server was not available, try again in a few minutes. I tried again in a few minutes, and was presented with a new "Additional signatures" download of nearly 48 MB. I said "Cancel" and tried again several times during the ensuing two hours, always with the same result.

I cannot afford to have my computer, and my only telephone landline, tied up for eight hours almost daily, trying to update one piece of software. We discussed this problem previously several weeks ago. If others are having a similar experience, this will drive customers and potential customers away (it is driving me away - I am at this moment of course not a paying customer, but this experience would discourage me very strongly from becoming one <G>). I have been a software developer myself and understand very well how important it is that software be useful, and not awkward, for the end user. It seems to me that here is a real problem needing someone's attention. I suppose it has something to do with how your update system recognizes what modules are already installed on the client's computer. Can this PLEASE be fixed?

I don't know any other software product which demands this kind of massive update on a frequent basis (indeed, in this case, twice in the same day). You have a very nice product but this is IMHO a serious blemish ... especially of course if the paid versions behave the same way ...

Thanks,

Dr. John

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Hi Dr. John, and welcome to the new forum.

In the discussion you pointed to Forced to download all updates few things were mentioned:

- the incoming changes regarding updates; (implemented and went to stable version, see below)

- since you questioned moving to paid edition again, there was a note about A-M Suite being less sensitive to the issue since there is an auto-updates and therefore small differential updates are delivered often automatically.

I need to restart Asquared to load the new modules

If you received modules, you did not update for a long time, because the last modules updated were issued October 7 Change Blog

and you can see that in changelog plus the number of signatures update was quite substantial since.

I can confirm that the repeated unsuccessful updated of a-squared's native signatures is fixed.

In addition, as far as I know, now the number of subsequent updates of the Additional Signatures from Ikarus after which the whole file is reissued, changed from 15 to 50.

There were no reports similar to what you described yet. Mainly I'm having in mind users of dial-up.

Finally, please don't get me wrong. I am not just “blindly protecting” a-squared

I repeatedly said - I do understand concerns and frustration of those who is compelled using dial-up

Moreover I still think that the update procedure of Ikarus Signatures can be improved, and discussing that with developers. H_D is one of the participants in the discussion.

At the same time I think that the clearness of the line/reliability of the particular dial-up connection is a big contributor to the problem.

It's most likely that your line is not up to shape and there are many dropouts, which is unfortunate and the Software may not be able to correct all possible breaks all the time, therefore you may have troubles currently, when it seems to be fixed and working (more) reliably for others.

My regards

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If you miss more than 50 updates of the IKARUS engine (which equals about 3 days of updates) you will have to download the whole database again. While we agree that this design is not very low bandwidth friendly there is really nothing we can do about it. It's not our design, we just license the engine. IKARUS is working on an overhaul for their update system though. But as always we can't give any ETA when the new update system for IKARUS will be available.

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If you miss more than 50 updates of the IKARUS engine (which equals about 3 days of updates) you will have to download the whole database again. While we agree that this design is not very low bandwidth friendly there is really nothing we can do about it. It's not our design, we just license the engine. IKARUS is working on an overhaul for their update system though. But as always we can't give any ETA when the new update system for IKARUS will be available.

I can almost see you shrugging Fabian. My situation is very similar to that of Dr. John since I have a dial-up connection too. This is not by choice, but it's all I can get in my rural area. So we need to update less than every 3 days, do we? Well what if we either wish or need to be away from home for a week or more? It is ludicrous that we should have to download the entire database again. This doesn't happen with other programs that I know of and it shouldn't happen with a-squared, unless you wish to lose customers of course.

I think this system should be improved as soon as possible if you want to be competitive.

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So we need to update less than every 3 days, do we?

In general, yes. There are situations where 50 updates are used within less time or more. But 3 days is a general estimation. This isn't what happened in your case though.

It is ludicrous that we should have to download the entire database again. This doesn't happen with other programs that I know of and it shouldn't happen with a-squared, unless you wish to lose customers of course.

The limit was not chosen arbitrary. There is a point where the sum of sizes of the delta files will exceed the size of the whole database. This point is reached at roughly 50 delta files. While we can discuss endlessly about the disadvantages of the approach there really is nothing we could do about it. We brought that problem to IKARUS' attention several times. They are looking into it. But that's pretty much it.

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Hi I am also receiving the large update,it started with a normal size & got halfway through before it started on the large update. I let it run through but every update now reverts to the large update,I am using asquared free & it was normally updated twice daily or whenever I noticed an update on your website.

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Hi lankyknave, and welcome to the forum

Please read Forum Posting Rules and provide info about your system as in #2)

Also please tell what kind of connection you are using.

Have you read this and other referred threads regarding the problem?

...like this one in our old forum ... There are other discussions as well, but mainly that's unfortunately in most cases applies to the users with dial-up.

Have you tried canceling the "big update" if you are updating frequently?

If so, tell whether that helped and next time you are getting small differential update as usual?

My regards

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Hi Lynx

sorry for not reading the forum rules.

This seems to be a intermittent problem because after canceling the large update twice this time everything seems to be o. k.as the update was done normally after waiting a couple of hours.

Thank You for the prompt reply.

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lankyknave,

There is no need to apologize.

At the same time the request for providing information about the systems was placed as a rule in this forum because it has a purpose, and that didn't come from “nowhere”, but from the experience of managing problems. The similar is a mandatory in most of technical forums.

Despite this particular problem seems being “intermittent” / spontaneous /odd / etc. ,

there could be specifics that may give developers valuable information when as much details as possible were supplied.

When they have the details about different environments the may get an idea about what could've been overlooked.

Well if not all info,.. but at least answering the question about the type of the connection would be helpful

I hope you will not take the above personally (that is not a “criticism” per se) :)

Glad that the normal update eventually worked after canceling.

My regards

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Hi Lynx

My specs are Operating System : Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition 5.01.2600 32 bit Service Pack 3

Processor : Intel Pentium 4 @ 2800 MHz

Physical Memory : 512 MB

Sunbelt Personal Firewall, Spyware Terminator, Malwarebytes Anti Malware on demand, a2Free on demand, SuperAntispyware, Spybot search &destroy on demand, Avast anti virus, Spy ware Blaster. Wireless Broadband 3.6 mbs

Hope this is of some use.

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Thanks for reply and info, lankyknave.

I'll highlight information about the connection type by leaving that part of your post at the end of my reply

My regards

... Wireless Broadband 3.6 mbs

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Hi Lynx

Once again the huge update occurred, this time no matter how many times I canceled it still happened. 3 times to be exact.

The program updated normally for 3 updates before this happened, is anything being done to fix this.

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Hi lankyknave,

Yes, today that happened here too.

I posted to developers, but they did not reply yet.

Most likely that was one of those necessary cumulative updates

I have ~19 Mbit/sec broadband (that's max I can have from 24Mbit/sec ADSL2+ due to the location - remoteness from exchange)

So, I'm suspecting that this time that was normal... unless developers will tell different

UpdateLOG_17-Nov.jpg My last update was 2:32 AM

... and the "big one hit at ~11:00 AM (I doubt that there were 50 subsequent updates in between)

My regards

P.S.

...is anything being done to fix this.
all I can tell - developers are are working on it as is was pointed before here

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In addition to the above

Most likely that was one of those necessary cumulative updates

and now there is a confirmation from developers, so we don't need to write “most likely” or “probably” as in another similar thread

As Fabian Wosar replied recently here

IKARUS changed their database format yesterday. So the full database download was intentional. Since the update was quite large the update server were quite busy so broadband users may not have been able to download full speed as usual.

{added} ChangeBlog (Posted on November 17, 2009 09:17)

My regards

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Hi Lynx&Fabian Wosar,

After trying to update, again the large update occured, so I uninstalled using Revo uninstaller & reinstalled when I checked for updates there was a large update which I thought was o.k.as I needed the full database, however on checking for an update a few hours later there was the large update again.

Considering the problems that have occurred I have permanently uninstalled the program, because apart from the inconvenience,I only have a limited download per month with my ISP.

Thank You for your previous help.

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I was about to congratulate you on finally having solved the "gigantic update download" problem ... because my last two updates (after respectively about one week and two days absence) were of reasonable size. This evening, however, the following happened:

I updated as usual, for a reasonable download of about 900 KB. At the end, got a notification that the Ikarus signatures could not be updated, the update server was temporarily unavailable, try again in a few minutes. I did other things and in half an hour or so tried again. Got a 57 MB download (about four hours at 45.2 kbps, the only connection available out here in boonie land). I canceled. Tried again in five minutes and got a reasonable download (don't remember, but less than 500 KB) after which it said "Update successfully completed" and I went ahead and scanned the system (finding nothing).

So the detection of what is and what is not installed on the target computer is still a bit shaky?

I can live with this (and really like your software) but it would be nice to fix it <G>.

Dr. John

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I experienced a similar issue yesterday morning. The automatic update had not started so I initiated a manual update and it identified that the program required the full signature database (49xxxKB). This is nonsense as I had updated the previous evening. I cancelled and immediately tried again and A2-AM downloaded a smaller update of 305KB.

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Greetings all,

I have to confirm that such thing happened here some hour & a half ago and that update was canceled.

BigUpdate_Again.jpg The next hit straight after cancelling brought the normal ~500K of Additional signatures.

That is extremely rare event here, but since it happening we have to say that it's happening (with broadband as well)

My regards

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Hi,

These big (49MB) updates are not very uncommon at all. I get them every other day. Even though i have A-M updating automatically every two hours. I wonder why.

mickel :)

EDIT:

And right. I'm running the registered version of A-M 4.5. :)

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This evening I had the following occur:

I asked for web update. The size was reasonable (around 900+ KB, I don't remember exactly). It was called "Additional signatures". Without further input from me it then continued with another "Additional signatures" to the tune of 50+ MB. I cancelled. After at least 3 or 4 cancellations of the 50+ MB download, I got a more reasonable one (900+ MB) which went to completion. It said "Update successfully completed". I then scanned the system, with the usual results (a tracking cookie or two).

I am rather tempted to conclude from this experience that the update manager's ability to recognize what is and what is not already installed on the client computer is a bit, er, unpredictable.

My principal claim to fame as a software developer (my primary occupation for about 10 years) was "build a better mousetrap" - i.e. if the software doesn't do what the client needs done, relatively painlessly, then no matter how elegant the code, it is bad software. Because my apps were designed for use by municipal employees, and later by truck scale operators (etc.), I became (against my will <G>) rather expert at the trapping of input errors (validate, validate, validate, against clean databases - because otherwise you are going to sit up all night(s!) fixing databases that the users have screwed up, and which you cannot tinker with during working hours because they are in constant use <G>).

Being a mathematical physicist by early training, I have a certain weakness for elegant and economical code, but ... <G>

I still love the a-squared software, but it would be nice to have this fixed <G>.

BTW I am polyglot, as much at home in German as in English (8 years of Max Planck Institut as a scientific "Gastforscher").

Thanks for enlightenment

John

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This happened again this morning. Cancelled the 49xxxKB download, tried again and a 297KB update was downloaded instead. I last updated 11 hours ago.

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