How do I reduce download traffic for online updates?

  • January 23, 2020
  • 2 min read

As there are a high number of new online threats being detected every day (about 350,000 per day in 2016, up to about 500,000 per day in 2019) our software naturally requires frequent online updates to ensure best protection. By default, Emsisoft Anti-Malware checks for new updates once every hour and these updates remain fairly small and manageable.

The total required download traffic for online updates is typically less than 25 MB per day when updates are left at the hourly default, except when a new software version is being released near the beginning of each month. If you miss running updates for more than a few days, the total required data-traffic can exceed 350 MB since it will need to download the entire offline signature database along with any available core program updates.

Emsisoft Anti-Malware is optimized for online updates being enabled and set to 1 hour intervals to ensure the best protection and lowest total amount of traffic.

The Emsisoft update system implements a number of mechanisms to reduce the required download traffic to a minimum:

Update compression

All files are transferred in a compressed state from the Emsisoft update server infrastructure.

Differential updates

Instead of downloading all modified files in full, our software only transfers the differences to the previous file versions. Emsisoft provides differential updates for the last 30 versions of each software component.

As some of the signature and malware-host database files are frequently refreshed (up to every hour), the total interval of available differential updates may be as short as about 24 hours for specific files. That implies that when you turn off automatic updates or set a longer update interval, you may miss the opportunity to get significantly smaller differential updates. Your software then downloads the full files.

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