Sparkle to update Blender

I haven’t found a topic in this forum so I am just writing out of curiosity.

Has blender developers considered using Sparkle framework on macOS to allow users to update between minor versions? I started learning/using blender and I try to keep up with patch updates. And with every patch update I found going to website and downloading (e.g. 3.2.0 → 3.2.1) image and copying it slightly annoying. I understand and appreciate the work that goes into them, however there is space in making update process to end-users smoother and more pleasant. I also understand that my audacious lazyness can offend someone so I apologize for that upfront.

A lot of macOS applications that are not distributed through Mac App Store use Sparkle to allow users update their apps without going to the website and downloading archives or disc images.

I also understand that this might be very low on priority list and due to resource constraints is not being tackled. If so — I’d love to take a stab at it.

Couple of issues with this

  1. It still won’t be as smooth given our Privacy and Internet access-rule that says blender can’t connect to the internet without explicit permission, so this will need to be behind a switch in preferences at the least.

  2. Sparkle appears to be mac only, if an auto update mechanism would be considered inside blender it will have to service all the platforms we ship (ie Linux/Mac/Windows)

  3. This need is currently serviced through the various app stores (ie steam, the ms store, snap and flatpack) and various 3rd party solutions like blender launcher, investing resources to support yet one more option here feels like resources better spend elsewhere.


Thank you for thorough answer. Looking at #3 — most of the solutions seem to be for Linux and Windows platforms.

Is there a reason not to distribute Blender using Apple’s Mac App Store? Is it because of allowing users to script the Blender using Python? Or required low level access to video hardware?

Just a thought: 3rd party solutions seem to be mostly Linux or Windows. The only product that updates Blender on mac (among others) is Steam store. There seems to be space for 3rd party Blender updaters on macOS which basically boils down to separate initiatives relying on Blender users choosing said updater.

afaik the apple app store eula and the GPL do not go well together, for other platforms like steam this is less of a problem, since the restrictive licenses are on the steamworks sdk, which we don’t use.

If you think there’s a space for another updater, we certainly won’t stop you, that’s the great thing about open source development, take the code and create! We highly encourage that sort of thing!

However just to shape expectations before you start, it is very unlikely we would ship with with stock blender for the reasons outlined previously.


Thanks for the clarifications! And yes, I am aware that this would absolutely not ship with blender out of the box :slight_smile:

Why not compiling your blender every day yourself.
Once setup, you only download the updated files and compile them each day.
And you can choose what blender version you want to compile.

I only open my terminal, tap twice the up arrow to get my last command back (make update & make) in my blender-git/blender folder, then hit return and a few seconds later I have a fresh updated master build. (if there have been updates)
AND when you setup your addons folder in blender settings (under ‘scripts’) away from the blender app (folder), you can compile as many different versions of blender & all working with the same addons folder.
To choose a version you need to do a ‘checkout + the release’ or leave it as is and get always the latest master build.
see here:
and here:

There is the Terminal way or the xcode way. Both need xcode.
I use the Terminal (first) way. Since I have no idea about xcode.

Tipp: Update your mac via terminal ‘brew update && brew upgrade’ to get the latest python, then install Xcode 13.2 (not the newer 13.3+ at the moment) and with the instructions above you’re good to go.
First time build will take some minutes, after that it will be less than a minute as usual.
Now make a shortcut in your Dock from the blender app in your build ‘blender-git/build_darwin/bin/’ folder.
This way when you quickly compiled blender you can always use this Dock shortcut to open Blender after each build.

Very handy in my eyes, when you think of it.
Just start terminal, hit twice the arrow up button, then return key.
Then click blender in the Dock!
That’s way less work and traffic than downloading it each day ++ you’re most of the time more up to date than the downloads…

PS: And never forget the power of…backups…(Library->Applications Support->Blender->3.2 …3.3 …3.4…)

Thank you for the lengthy reply, but I am looking for user-friendlier update process. The way described it — it’s a developer-friendly approach. I am trying to boil everything down to a single button click for the end-user.

Maybe this Blender updater is interesting for you?


those scripts have their own issues under macOS!