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I am trying to update my mac OS software to the latest version (10.12.6) from my current version (10.12.4) and unfortunately the app store 'updates' section freezes for me and I can't update it from there. I found another solution, which was to use the terminal to install the update. The problem is that when I type "softwareupdate -l" it returns nothing (I'm aware that this specific command won't actually install it). Not that it doesn't find updates, it's as if it won't stop searching.

Last login: Thu Nov 2 18:48:50 on ttys000
User ~ $ softwareupdate -list
Software Update Tool
Copyright 2002-2015 Apple Inc.
Finding available software

Any help would be appreciated!

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Do you have a custom software update server set? See Reset OS X Software Update server for info on how to check & if necessary reset it.

Another option is to bypass the update server system by downloading and installing the update manually. You can find updates at support.apple.com/downloads; the specific one you need is the macOS Sierra 10.12.6 Combo Update

(Note: the 12.12.6 Combo update should not be confused with the "macOS Sierra 10.12.6 Update" -- the non-combo or "delta" version requires that you already be up to 10.12.5. You're running 10.12.4, so you need the combo update.)

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I guess updating OS X via command line requires sudo

sudo softwareupdate -i -r
  • I don't think so, I had already tried that with the exact same result – Brendan O'Sullivan Nov 3 '17 at 0:14
  • Try booting in Rescue mode and try repairing volume and system permission. Also check you logs (Applications > Utilities > Konsole). Do you see any errors while opening the AppStore update section? – howdytom Nov 3 '17 at 0:22

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