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sudo port upgrade outdated

I type the above and the fan on my 2014 Macbook Pro Retina 15 sounds like a jet engine taking off. After about 10 minutes of the fan blowing hot air out of the side of my Macbook Pro, I stop the update for fear of my expensive notebook burning up. How could a simple software update cause such a reaction? This doesn't happen all the time, just if I haven't updated Macports in a while.

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That behaviour is expected, as each updated port needs to be compiled for your system. Some ports are simpler and don't take much effort. Others are more complex and will cause your MacBook to heat up as it works (example: ffmpeg).

Given you say you haven't updated your ports in a while, likely there are quite a few ports that need updating. You can take a look at those with:

port outdated

From there, you can choose which ones you want to update, if you don't want to update all of them:

sudo port upgrade PORTNAME

Additionally, you can see what MacPorts is doing by looking at the output in your Terminal. Typical steps where your MacBook may heat up are:

---> Configuring PORTNAME
---> Building PORTNAME

Do not be concerned about the temperatures. If they really become too hot, your MacBook will shutdown by itself to prevent serious damage.

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