When I check for system updates through System Preferences, when I do softwareupdate -l in the terminal or after rebooting on my Mac Pro 2013 running 12.6.3 Monterey, both the mouse and keyboard stop responding for a moment, then return.

I have a keyboard with backlighting, I can see the keyboard resetting every time the computer checks for system updates. It's very annoying because I have to set my preferred backlight mode after every reset and having the keyboard at maximum brightness after an update check at 3:00 am in the morning is not a fun way to be awakened.

What might be the reason for the USB resetting when checking for system updates? This also happened on Catalina, as well.

  • You could try the Update control panel instead. I don't see it on a 2012 Mac Pro running Mojave… but why do you need to run softwareupdate at all? It's not like there ever will be any further updates for Catalina.
    – Tetsujin
    Oct 15, 2022 at 10:32
  • @Tetsujin I'm uncertain which update control panel you're referring to. Also yes, there still have been updates for Catalina recently, but I ran softwareupdate mostly for troubleshooting purposes.
    – Will B
    Oct 16, 2022 at 5:04
  • @Tetsujin Thanks to the hack filled work we live in, Apple patches active (yet outdated) OS versions regularly. Feb 8, 2023 at 21:34
  • 1
    Can't answer because softwareupdate isn't in the list of projects in opensource.apple.com/releases so we can't look at code, but I would venture a guess that the software polls the hardware firmware (like USB firmware, SMC, etc.) to get the current version to compare to manifest somewhere online. This polling causes the hardware to momentarily reset.
    – Allan
    Feb 9, 2023 at 2:05


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