In other words, is there a Windows 10 equivalent to apt-get / rpm / brew? Preferably cheap or free, and available for use in my business?

The more software packages it supports, the better. Preferably on the order of thousands of different programs supported.

  • free.Kaspersky.com has a tool to scan and update almost all your installed apps
    – user27105
    Commented Oct 10, 2016 at 7:31

12 Answers 12


UPDATE 2016-10-10: It's possible that Chocolatey version 0.10.0 gave me a malware infection a couple of months ago. However, that does not seem to be the case. I have not had any trouble so far with Chocolatey v0.10.1 or 0.10.3. See further notes in the Comments section.


I recently discovered Chocolatey: https://chocolatey.org. This is what I am using at the moment.

This is a command-line tool. It requires administrative privileges (naturally). After I installed it, I ran the following commands, among others, to install various applications and register them with Chocolatey:

choco install 7zip
choco install firefox
choco install adblockplus-firefox
choco install GoogleChrome
choco install adblockpluschrome
choco install opera
choco install adblockplusopera
choco install git
choco install github
choco install notepadplusplus
choco install SublimeText2
choco install vlc

Now, any time I want to check for updates to any of these, and automatically install any updates found, I just run:

choco upgrade all


choco upgrade all -y (to accept all upgrade confirmations)

Works like a charm.

  • 6
    There's a GUI too: chocolatey.org/packages/ChocolateyGUI Commented Jul 3, 2016 at 17:44
  • 5
    Sometimes the package installed by chocolatey can be outdated compared to the upstream source, but often this is resolved after a few days.
    – llogan
    Commented Jul 3, 2016 at 18:03
  • 5
    As with any distro & public software repository system, it is valuable to think about what verification is done and what integrity guarantees are provided. Lots of info about Chocolatey security at github.com/chocolatey/choco/wiki/Security . They point out that their commercial offerings have some added commercial virus/malware scanning.
    – rakslice
    Commented Jul 3, 2016 at 22:04
  • 2
    It also integrates with Windows 10 PackageManager too hanselman.com/blog/…
    – Aron
    Commented Jul 5, 2016 at 5:29
  • 4
    It does a virus check, alright. But how about toolbars and all that kind of stuff?
    – Mathlight
    Commented Jul 5, 2016 at 9:40

There is in fact a command-line package manager built into Windows 10: PackageManagement.

It uses PowerShell's extremely verbose language to give a native Windows equivalent of apt-get or yum. You can start with:

PS C:> Get-Command -module PackageManagement | sort noun, verb

to generate a list of available commands. There are many other commands and options available, which can be found by following Microsoft's PackageManager blog entry on TechNet. Actual usage is as simple as invoking the following from a PowerShell window:

PS C:> install-package chrome

There is also an open-source fork of this, called OneGet (which was also the development name of PackageManagement). You can find it on GitHub. I believe there's also a PackageManagement plug-in for Chocolatey, as well as other package managers, allowing you to install all of their packages via PackageManagement too.

  • 3
    Extremely verbose is an understatement... Commented Jul 5, 2016 at 18:03
  • 5
    Get-Command -Module PackageManagement -> gcm -m package* Commented Jul 7, 2016 at 0:43

Just my two cents: Ninite

It has got a wide variety of apps to choose from, which it will install / update without Toolbars and all that stuff:

List of apps available from Ninite

Through a simple cmd script, you can set the install language for the apps (If you don't want the default os installed language)

It is also useful for getting all your usual programs on a fresh install of windows.

  • Thanks. I have used Ninite a little bit. It's cool and all, just doesn't support the full range of apps I want to keep updated. But many people will probably find it useful. Commented Jul 9, 2016 at 4:22

I used to do computer maintenance kind of work, which required me:

  1. To have a lot of setup packages on hand and updated
  2. Being able to quickly install/update any/set of them
  3. To have a set of portable tools runnable from flash drive and also kept updated

I settled on Ketarin, which I still use to this day. It specializes on (1) of updating setup packages, but has plenty of functionality related to scripted installs.

ketarin interface

It's more on the DIY side of things for configuration, but doesn't rely on any central repository. It can handle complicated downloads when site tries to make that hard.

There are (old) reviews of Ketarin itself and install functionality at my blog.

  • Ketarin sounds interesting. But when I went to its website, it specifically said that Ketarin is not designed to keep your system up to date. So I don't really think this is what I'm after. Commented Jul 9, 2016 at 4:13
  • 1
    It can keep install instructions with every application and it can run them (including whenever package updates). As for me this is quite sufficient functionality for that.
    – Rarst
    Commented Jul 9, 2016 at 7:59

You can use Patch My PC Updater:

  • free
  • update third-party applications
  • portable
  • light (401 KB for the current version)
  • support about 100 applications

enter image description here


enter image description here

  • Thanks, but I'm looking for something that supports a much wider range of software products. I believe Chocolatey supports over 1000 different applications. For many people, however, Patch My PC might work just fine. Commented Jul 3, 2016 at 17:11
  • 1
    @StephenGTuggy But it requires the user to have installed the software through Chocolatey, right? Commented Jul 3, 2016 at 17:12
  • 4
    Sort of. IIRC, it's possible to install a program (say, Firefox) without using Chocolatey, but then run choco install firefox to, in effect, "register" Firefox with the Chocolatey system. This command will also install the latest version of Firefox at the same time, if a later version is available. Commented Jul 3, 2016 at 17:16
  • @StephenGTuggy Good to know, thanks! Commented Jul 3, 2016 at 17:18

You can use Flexera (previously Secunia) PSI:

Stay secure by updating insecure programs on your computer

Personal Software Inspector is a free computer security solution that identifies vulnerabilities in applications on your private PC. Vulnerable programs can leave your PC open to attacks, against which your antivirus solution may not be effective. Simply put, it scans software on your system and identifies programs in need of security updates to safeguard your PC against cybercriminals. It then supplies your computer with the necessary software security updates to keep it safe.

Personal Software Inspector is a security scanner which identifies programs that are insecure and need updates. It automates the updating of the majority of these programs, making it a lot easier to maintain a secure PC. It automatically detects insecure programs, downloads the required patches, and installs them accordingly without further user interaction.

Personal Software Inspector also detects and notifies you of programs that cannot be automatically updated with software patches and provides you with detailed instructions for updating the program when available. In most cases, you simply need to click the appropriate icon in the Results window and follow the on-screen instructions to install the latest patches.

Personal Security Inspector includes the following:

  • Automatic update of programs: Automatically updates your insecure programs, so you don’t have to visit different software vendor sites and figure out what their particular update mechanism is. On a typical private PC, you have to master between 25 to 30 different update mechanisms to patch approximately 75 programs, if you do not have an automated solution.
  • Available in 8 languages: English, French, German, Spanish, Arabic, Danish, Norwegian and Dutch. Because understanding the instructions and recommendations is an important aspect of security.
  • Covers programs from thousands of vendors: Includes hundreds of preconfigured software patches for easy deployment and covers 20,000+ programs – more non-Microsoft programs than anyone else.
  • Integration for deployment: Personal Software Inspector covers thousands of programs and automatically detects insecure programs, downloads the required patches, and installs them accordingly without further user interaction. The average private PC has around 75 programs installed, so you should be covered.
  • Note this only updates on security updates. For example, it didn't offer to update itself.
    – Mark Hurd
    Commented Jul 4, 2016 at 16:26
  • I have tried Secunia PSI. I was pretty disappointed with it. The program was CONSTANTLY scanning the software on my PC, and bogging down the system to do it. One warning about an out-of-date software component NEVER WENT AWAY -- for months -- even after I repeatedly installed the update they recommended. Overall, a rather frustrating experience. Commented Jul 9, 2016 at 4:20
  • 1
    It's dead (well, the good version anyway, the one that tells you what it is doing) secuniaresearch.flexerasoftware.com/community/forum/thread/show/…
    – Ben Voigt
    Commented Jul 13, 2017 at 15:35

Avast (free, Windows) has a module for that, but it doesn't support all applications:

enter image description here

enter image description here

Also, if you activate automatic update, it will update without asking you.

enter image description here

  • 2
    Again, I'm looking for something that supports a broader range of software. But this feature of Avast! will probably be useful for many other people. Commented Jul 3, 2016 at 17:17

I am using RuckZuck

enter image description here

Select a Software from the Repository and RuckZuck handles the download and the Installation for you. RuckZuck is able to detect and update existing Software that was not installed with RuckZuck.

The RuckZuck repository does not store the binaries of the Software, just the links to where the software is downloaded. Installing Software with RuckZuck does not grant you a license for that Product.

  • Hmm. I see RuckZuck offers a OneGet provider, just like Chocolatey does. Cool! Maybe I'll check it out. Commented Jul 9, 2016 at 4:29

For Intel drivers, there is the free Intel® Driver Update Utility

enter image description here

What components does the tool detect?

Graphic Drivers

The Utility detects Intel® integrated graphics controllers for desktop and laptop computers.

If you have an Internet device using the Intel® Graphics Media Accelerator 500, go to Intel® Download Center for drivers.

For all other graphics controllers, contact your computer manufacturer or place of purchase for drivers support.

Audio Driver for Intel® Desktop Board

The Utility detects audio devices for Intel® Desktop Boards purchased through a retailer.

Intel sells desktop boards to computer manufacturers who may customize the drivers. These drivers are not detected by this Utility.

Wireless Networking

The Utility detects active Intel® wireless products.

Discontinued products are not detected. Contact your computer manufacturer or place of purchase for support.

Wired Networking

The Utility detects Intel® Ethernet network add-in adapters and Intel® Desktop Boards with integrated network connections purchased through a retailer.

Intel sells wired networking cards to computer manufacturers who may customize the drivers. These drivers are supported only by the computer manufacturer.


There is also FileHippo. The site offers a wide range of applications for download and has a FileHippo App Manager to keep track of the softwares and update them.

FileHippo App Manager is a great application that will keep your system up-to-date. FileHippo App Manager will scan your computer for installed applications, check the versions and then send this data to FileHippo.com to ascertain if there are any newer releases available. If there are any new releases, these are then neatly displayed in your browser window for you to download*.

  • Thanks, but that doesn't sound as automated as I would like. Commented Jul 9, 2016 at 4:30

I am using SuMo (Software Update Monitor) and DuMo (Driver Update Monitor) from KC Software.

  • Both are available as a free version and as a paid "Pro" version.
  • The number of applications being monitored mainly depends on the number os users using Sumo/DuMo. AFAIK, it will only point you to a new version if at least one user has installed a newer version.

    This on its own is already a downside, but there's one more: some developers may use it while they're working on a newer version of the software. That developer version may be reported as a new version, but the new version is not available for download yet.

Other than that, I'm a quite happy user of it (on Windows 7, however).

  • Stable software only, please! As much as possible, anyway. Commented Jul 9, 2016 at 4:25
  • @StephenGTuggy: how is it instable? Commented Jul 11, 2016 at 6:21
  • I was talking about the third-party software updates that SuMo offers, not about SuMo itself. You said: "some developers may use it while they're working on a newer version of the software. That developer version may be reported as a new version, but the new version is not available for download yet." Commented Jul 11, 2016 at 12:17
  • Did I misunderstand? Does SuMo not actually allow you to download these beta versions, or whatever you want to call them? Commented Jul 11, 2016 at 12:19
  • @StephenGTuggy: ok, I see. In such a case, SuMo will report an available update and guide you to the webpage for downloading a new version. If the developer has not published that version, you won't find a newer version for download. Commented Jul 11, 2016 at 12:24

2023 update: WinGet is now a viable alternative as well. A coworker got me started using it. I am now using both WinGet and Chocolatey to check for updates on the same machine. Sometimes Chocolatey has the latest version of something a day or two before WinGet does. Other times, it's the other way around.

I still generally prefer the no-frills, no-nonsense settings that Chocolatey install scripts tend to use. And the automation. WinGet installs tend to be a bit more interactive. But for some programs, and in some cases, WinGet is better.

Worth noting that WinGet comes with Windows 11, already installed. (As far as I can tell, anyway.)

Compare the Chocolatey "update everything" command:

choco upgrade all

with the WinGet "check for updates" command:

winget upgrade

I use them both on almost a daily basis. Note also that the winget upgrade command does not need to be run from an elevated PowerShell or Command Prompt window (unlike choco upgrade all). The individual installers called by WinGet will ask for elevated permissions as necessary.

  • 1
    WinGetUI is a GUI interface that interacts with both Chocolatey and Winget to install and update software on Windows: winget install SomePythonThings.WingetUIStore
    – OldTimer
    Commented Apr 23 at 9:34

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