A new version of SUMO, the Software Updates Monitor, was released today and it was enough reason to take another closer look at the application and some of its features. SUMO can be used to scan the computer system for installed applications, check their versions and compare that with the version stored in an online database.
SUMO will scan the applications listed in the Windows Start Menu by default but the user can let it scan specific drives or folders on the system and add executables manually. Users will be surprised that SUMO will recognize most of the applications that are added manually. A test with MWSnap and Newsbin Pro was successful. SUMO recognized the two applications and was able to check their version in the database.
One interesting option is to include beta versions in the update notifications which can be enabled in the program's settings. Including beta versions raised the update count from 6 to 26 applications. Some like an update of Firefox 3.03 to Firefox 3.1 would require some research while others are no brainers.
The interesting feature is to add executables manually to SUMO. Not all executables will be recognized though because some developers do not include version information in their files. That's however not a problem of SUMO but of all software updater.
SUMO will display the applications that need an update including the new version that is available. A click on Get Update will load a website with download links to the latest version. There is no option to download the files directly from within Sumo. The advantage is that the websites contain usually between 2-5 locations that contain the latest version of the software.
Users can propose a link on the websites, perform a Google Search and Report Errors or Beta versions. The latest version and the version of the user is shown on the page as well.
SUMO is missing a few features that would make it an universal software. An option to download all software updates automatically would be more than welcome. As would be a feature to add links to software applications manually to the software. It is possible to add applications but if SUMO does not have them in their database there is no way to update them. The only option is to click the Get Update link and propose a link.