Difference between a Patch and an Upgrade

Key Difference: An update or a patch is a very small snippet of code or multiple snippets of code that are packaged and sent to the user. On the other hand, an upgrade is something that includes a huge change and is a complete version change that at times requires payment.

PatchAnyone who has ever used any type of software knows about the mini prompts that they receive regarding upgrades and patches. From phones to desktops and everything in between, the upgrades and patches are something we’ve all seen. And while we definitely say yes to any of these prompts, a lot of people are often confused as to what exactly is the difference between the two.

While it can be a little confusing, it is definitely a pretty easy concept once we explain it here. The only similarities that a patch and upgrade have is that both are snippets of code that modify a software or program. Other than that, both are pretty much different.

An update or a patch is a very small snippet of code or multiple snippets of code that are packaged and sent to the user. These changes are often denoted as v.01.00 to v.01.01. The patches are commonly sent to address some issues, vulnerabilities or activate certain functions in the software. In simplest terms, patches are sent to fix problems or bugs that are present in the current software. This doesn’t completely haul the software and at most times you won’t even notice any difference in the software.

On the other hand, an upgrade is something that includes a huge change. It is a complete version change and the change is often denoted as v.01.00 to v.02.00.  For OS in phones, manufacturers often provide a version change for free, but for many software companies, an upgrade will definitely cost you. Anyone who has upgraded from a Windows 7 to Windows 8, definitely remembers paying for it. Version changes are commonly less frequent and take longer to install, as it requires removing or rewriting the previous version that is already present. In an upgrade, you are also definitely bound to see a difference in the way the software is designed, as many companies do tend to change the way their software looks and feels.

Upgrade

So, in short the only difference between patches and upgrades are that patches are pretty much unnoticeable and are meant to fix bugs or add smaller features, while upgrades are large version changes that sometimes introduce brand new features to the program.

Now that you know the difference, you will now be able to make a more conscious choice between selecting which type of patches and upgrades you would actually like to install into your program.

Comparison between a Patch and an Upgrade:

 

Patch

Upgrade

Definition

A patch is a small snippet of code or multiple small snippets of code that are meant to address some issues, fix some vulnerabilities or activate certain functionalities

This is a large set of code or a brand new version of the software. It is often released as a more superior version of the same product

Installation

Installs over the already present software, without requiring any installation to the current version

Usually uninstalls the older version before it installs the later version

File Size

Smaller in size

Often larger in size

Cost

Free

Is often priced

Intensity

Low intensity, no major changes

High intensity, major changes

Overall Look and Feel

No huge changes to look and feel of the software

Sometimes huge changes to the look and feel of the software

Frequency

More frequent depending on the software

Less frequent compared to patches

Reference: Quora, Rocket It, The Balance, StackOverflow
Image Courtesy: lifewire.com, serverpress.com

Most Searched in Games and Recreation Most Searched in Entertainment and Music
Most Searched in Education and References Most Searched in Environment
Lenovo Thinkpad Twist vs Microsoft Surface RT
Casting vs Forging
Samsung Galaxy Win vs Xolo X1000
Teak Wood vs Rubber Wood

Add new comment

Plain text

CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.