How to Update Safari on Your Mac

Get the latest security updates and access new features

Update Browser Version and Apply Security Updates for Safari

Screenshot software update

In all versions of Mac OS X, there is a very handy tool called Software Update, which checks your computer and determines if there are any updates available for you to download and install. These range from updates to your Quicktime player to overall security updates for your entire operating system. Also included are updates to your Safari browser, which can be crucial to your browsing safety. Sometimes, when a security flaw within the Safari application is discovered, Apple will release a new version of the browser to correct it, and this can usually be downloaded and installed for you directly from the Software Update application. It is important that you check for updates often and install those that are crucial for security, such as these browser updates. Keep in mind that browser updates are not only for security purposes, as they often feature enhanced functionality. However, from a safety perspective, it is always important to keep your browser updated to the latest version.

First, make sure that you are connected to the Internet. Next, to manually launch the Software Update application, click the Apple menu (located on the upper left-hand side of your screen) and select Software Update...

Check Software

Screenshot checking for new software

At this point, the Software Update application compares available software versions online with the software currently installed on your computer to determine which updates it can offer you.

Display Updates

Screenshot Safari update

You are now provided with a list of available updates. Each update provides the update name, the updated version, and the file size. Also, if a particular update has the small arrow icon in the left frame, it signifies that a restart of your computer will be required once that update has completed installation.

When an update item is highlighted, a full description of the update is usually provided in the bottom frame as is the case in the screenshot below.

You will notice in this example that a Safari update is indeed available. It is usually a good practice to install all available updates for any software that you use, even if you only use a certain software package sparingly. Also, you should ​always install updates with the word security in the title.

To select or deselect items that you would like to install, use the checkboxes directly to the left of their respective names. Note that some items will always be checked by default, including operating system security updates.

Install Items

Screenshot software update

Once you are sure all updates that you wish to install are checked correctly, click on the Install xx items button, located in the bottom right-hand corner of the window. In the example, we have seven items selected so the button reads "Install 7 items."

Enter Password

Screenshot software update

At this point, you may be prompted for your computer's administrator password. Enter your password in the appropriate field and click OK.


Screenshot software update

All the updates you previously selected will now be downloaded and installed. As you can see in the screenshot below, a progress bar and status message ​keep you updated as the download(s) take place. Upon completion of this process, you will be returned to the desktop and your updates will be fully installed.

However, if any of the updates that you installed required a restart of your computer, a message will appear giving you the option to either shut down or restart. When you restart or turn on your computer again, these updates will be fully installed.