How to: Reset the Software Update URL in OS X
Sometimes you may find that your Mac OS X installation has an old URL for the software update service in its preferences, which may mean that you can't successfully run the Software Update tool under the Apple menu. In my case, I got my Mac from my university and the update server was set to some internal server in their organisation. This server didn't seem to have the latest updates, and half of the time I couldn't even connect to it.
From various searches around the internet I found the following process to reset the update server URL to the default:
- Open the /Library/Preferences folder on the main hard drive.
- Find the com.apple.SoftwareUpdate.plist file and move this to the desktop (the easiest way is just to drag and drop the file to the Desktop). If you find a similar file with a .apple at the end (com.apple.SoftwareUpdate.plist.apple) then move that too. Moving them to the desktop means that you can restore them if this goes wrong.
- Run the Software Update tool (Software Update on the Apple menu on the top left of the main menu bar)
- It should all work fine! If not, then you can always restore the files that you put on the desktop (just move them back to /Library/Preferences)