What’s the difference between an update and an upgrade?

Software Updates

Software UpdateSoftware updates are  typically smaller and more minor or intermediate updates.  Normally these are “install in-place” updates, and are the least invasive and time consuming type of  update.  Usually this type of update targets specific software issues, such as: 

  • Corrections for known critical software issues. – something that prevents the software from functioning as designed.
  • Minor software design changes to enhance the use of a particular area of the software.
  • Mandated Credit Card processor software changes. – This could involve security related enhancements.
  • Payroll and Accounts Payable updates related to W-2 and 1099 Printing

Software Upgrades 

Software upgrades typically revolve around major software changes that may involve any or all of the following:

  • Major design change to the software that could require un-installing part or all of the existing software, and installing the new software in a new folder.  This could also  involve updating client software installed on existing workstations.
  • Adding new database tables or files, and require updating your existing custom software reports to reflect those changes.
  • A Complete restructuring of your database.  This could involve a lot of processing time to complete the work involved and some extended down time.

Firmware updates

Hardware manufacturers periodically release firmware updates that do various things such as correcting known device issues, and providing support for newly released software features.

As an example, if you currently have existing Ingenico ISC 250 Pin Pads in use now,  it will most likely require a firmware update for the device to be considered ready to meet the need Chip/Pin requirements that Visa and MasterCard have officially set. The deadline for retailers to adopt to EMV (chip and PIN) credit card technology is be October 2015, for any all stores will be expected to accept these kinds of cards.

This means that minimally, these units will need to have their firmware flashed (i.e. updated) prior to that date.

If you would like to schedule a review of you software for updates, or upgrades,  and hardware for needed firmware updates, please contact the CCS Retail Systems Support Department.

– John

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