Another Program To Check For Software That Needs Updating


A few days ago I wrote in this column about  Secunia PSI, a free utility that helps to advise you which of the programs on your PC needs updating.  A couple of you suggested that SUMo (Software Update Monitor) as a program which does a similar job, so I have been taking a look at it.

Like PSI, SUMo scans your computer looking for all installed applications.  It then advises which ones have an outstanding update that is available for download but which you haven't yet installed.  You can then choose to download the update (manually or though the SUMo program).  If you don't recognise a particular program in the list of items found on your PC, there's also an option to open the relevant directory/folder in Windows Explorer so you can take a closer look.

SUMo is free, and is a 1 MB download from that's malware-free according to VirusTotal and Web of Trust.  However, be aware that the installable version includes additional adware which will, unless you choose not to, get installed on your computer.  The safest option is to follow the advice on the web site and make sure you download the portable version, which is free of all unnecessary baggage.

As a way to scan your computer for software, SUMo is very useful.  On my particular machine it found about 800 programs.  Unfortunately, many of the programs it detected were not actually installed, but were merely copies of installers that I keep on my hard disk in case I ever need to use them in the future.  So long as you bear that in mind, SUMo is a useful tool to check for software (whether installed or not) that's lurking on your Windows machine.  And if you use the portable version, you can try it very easily.


Warning: [Picture] Download Portable Zipped version only, as the regular and lite installer contains adware.

Please rate this article: 

Your rating: None
Average: 3.4 (16 votes)



SUMo has been updated. Any new comment ?

Please contact me if you have more technical details about the potential leftovers in the lite version.

Further to my earlier comment regarding Avast's reaction to this program my computer has now serious startup problems. My system will not start so I have to manually close the power button and retry, second time I start I am obliged to run system repair. After doing this the SUMo desktop icon keeps reappearing despite my identifying all remnants of this program and deleting it.

My experience tells me that this program is extremely infectious and aggressive, I would advise avoiding this program at all costs.

How about Software Informer ( ?
No one mentions it although it is very efficient , works in the background and is not heavy on resources.
I've been using it the last 2 years and have to say I'm very satisfied.
I think it deserves a full review.

Since you've the desktop icon, it seems like you've downloaded the installer version and not the portable version as recommended in the article.

I have used SUMO for several months and find it fairly useful. A program listed in Gizmos "hot finds" a few months ago called Unchecky is quite handy for dealing with the bundled software problem that we sometimes encounter.

AVIRA antivirus reports that setup of uncheky tries to modify HOSTS file!
Beware !

I just came across this website. I found free software monitors are reviewed here:
Then I found this article, which seems to add nothing to that. The overall review of software monitors is much more upfront about SUMo's inclusion of Relevant Knowledge, which some commenters seem concerned about. Plus it compares the different software. So why this duplicate article? What am I missing?

What you're missing is that in the comments to this article, the statement in the previous one you referred to that the "lite" version is free of ad-ware is erroneous. The author in the article on this page corrected his original recommendation to reflect that the lite version has Relevant Knowledge ad-ware after he read the comments I posted.

Here's the paragraph from the software update article you linked to:

"WARNING: Should you decide to download SUMo, please ensure that you download the "Lite" or ZIP/7z version...The full version comes with a program called Relevant Knowledge, which is detected by most security software as spyware. The "Lite" version is identical to the full version, only without the spyware, and therefore deserves to be on this list"

That part of his article is inaccurate as the lite version is packaged with Relevant Knowledge and has the same toolbar file (itdownload.dll) that's in the Nork version. For more details see

Not everyone searches for a full review or is prepared to read all of it so these articles are intended to bring not just new as in just released material but established software apps many users will not have heard of. The reason why Sumo was written up is contained in the opening paragraph. MC - Site Manager.

If you say so. I'm not sure how well served readers are by having conflicting information on different pages of the website, by overlooking serious issues with the software, or by ignoring reputable competitors. That's why I think the reviews and comparisons are so much more valuable than promotional blurbs like this one.

If anything, the comments have turned the review of the program into a reason for not installing it, and if it must be used, to choose the portable zip version rather than the "lite" installer.

Unfortunately I have to report that Avast went apeshit during installation. Reported 55 "Threats". I installed the full version but declined the additional software. Avast kicked off at the final stage of installation. I uninstalled it immediately after it had finished installing.

I've seen the other posts about only installing the 'Lite' version and I may give that a go but KC software do state that any additional software can be "....easily rejected during installation and/or removed using Add/Remove Software control panel afterwards, independently from KC Softwares products."

In the For What Its Worth category: I downloaded the sumo_lite version with no problems, and my scanners found nothing suspicious. The program found 76 programs, none of which needed updating; plus a dozen more that it said it couldn't tell if they needed updating or not.

It's my understanding that Secunia PSI only lists updates where there is a security problem fixed, not just bugs squashed or extra program features added.

Edit: Glary utilities also has a function to search for new program versions. It's in the up-arrow icon (white arrow on blue background) on the bottom line of the main screen.

Thanks for the tip about Glary Utilities - knew there was a reason for keeping my Pro License!

I tried out the portable version and was surprised at just how many apps seemed out of date, which I found odd because I do weekly checks.

So I decided to check a few against the official sites and the very first 3 that I checked all confirmed that I was using the latest versions, despite Sumo stating that there was an update for a version that the developers themselves had not released.

This raised warning signals for me to wonder whether these supposed updates are hacked and could include malware.

Normally SuMo finds updates correctly. Probably what you're finding are beta versions. You can uncheck beta version update checks by going into Settings->Uncheck "Allow Beta versions"

I used Sumo for years...excellent software!

Thanks for reminding me why I use Linux. It updates all my apps safely and easily.

Thanks. Ran, fast, but nothing needed updating after having used PatchmyPC other day. Also enjoying Dashlane (LastPass type password system).

Thanks for review - a good point to remember is just be careful what you select when downloading anything.

The app correctly found about a score of programs needing update, though I thought I had carefully kept my system up-to-date.
Thanks, Gizmo, for the adware warning -- the portable Zip version shows no issue on VirusTotal,MalwareBytes or Avast! BTW, all the .SPK files except your own language may be eliminated.

I don't think VirusTotal reports are helpful in this case, because the standard installer and NoRK versions shows clean for me on Virustotal Standard: NoRK: Only behavioural blockers will be able to identify such adware, I think.

I'm surprised to hear about hitch-hikers on the Lite Version of SuMO. I have use it without incident for quite a while -- earlier, I had used the "NoRK" version, watching the install sequence very carefully.

Sumo is good, but takes a bit of getting used to. It updates almost weekly (so the install version is significant). You will get a few false positives, as well as suggested 'updates' for files embedded in other programs that are inaccessible. When I DO find an update, paranoia requires that I go directly to the program's own site.

All that said, it is an excellent program, especially when augmented with Ninite, FileHippo, and PSI.

Just to correct Rob Schifreen's instructions, the Nork version also includes the Relevant Knowledge script and the itdownload.dll file that's in the lite version as explained here:

The only one that doesn't is the portable version and once again, we don't know what code is in the main program exe file that might phone home and download some "goodies" at a later date.

Sorry, it was me who added the warning. I've updated the screenshot and the warning now. Edit: Thanks for your comment, I've read it now, and will update the article to download only the portable version.

It is full of malware and viruses according to Avast when I installed it.

Removed immediately and now I have to do a full system scan.

You shouldn't have downloaded the installer as mentioned in the article which contains adware. Correction: Only download the portable version.