Why I hate Brave's autoupdates

Hello, Brave fans!
I want to talk and I’m sure there are many users who feels the same.

Today Brave has been updated to v.1.7.98. I didn’t open the browser today and I disabled both Brave’s Windows services (brave / BraveUpdate.exe"/svc and bravem / BraveUpdate.exe"/medsvc) a few weeks ago. But despite this I noticed an increase in Internet traffic a few minutes after I turned my PC on. It was BraveUpdate.exe.

I see some serious problems:

  1. Brave update is about 100MB of Internet traffic. This is too much for many users who has a limits. For example, I usually only download updates at night, but not Brave updates.
  2. Two days after a major update, Brave will release a minor update with a new Chromium and after two days - another minor update with some minor fixes. Another 100MB x 2
  3. Brave Update Services in Windows Services is a fiction. I tried all possible options: disabled, manually, delayed start. Today I made sure that it does not work. Now I just renamed BraveUpdate.exe to BraveUpdateexe and I’m not sure it will help.

I know Brave want to add delta updates, but when? I hear these promises from last year. When? Today Vivaldi has been updated to v.3.0 and this is only a few megabytes!

The user does not receive any notification that the browser is being updated. You will learn about it after the fact. It’s wrong. Warn, not notify!

And the last one: when you open the browser for the first time in a day, it will eat about 15-30MB of your Internet traffic. It’s not OK! Show be other browser that works the same!

2 Likes

Hello, this is probably not the solution you seek, but it might work for you if you’re using Windows.

I use a package manager called scoop, with which I used to get the Brave Browser installed and keep updated. You just need to install, add the extras repository and install Brave. This installation won’t auto update, it will instead wait till the next time you do a manual update yourself.

I must warn you, though: Sometimes updates will fail, causing you major headaches. That’s why I decided to just install it normally and let it update by itself when it needs to.

Try it if you want, hopefully it’s helpful.

But this is not an exit. I saw a note that I can change some Windows file to kill all Brave updates, but this is not an exit too. Is there any reason to use Brave despite all this issues? For me this is only Tor, but I still can use Tor or just Opera. I’m so sad now. 6 months of promise of delta updates and 3 minor updates in 100MB every month. I miss the times of Maxthon and early Vivaldi…

I agree: Brave should give its users control over when updates are downloaded / installed. Some Chromium-based browsers (e.g.: Vivaldi) do this; Brave doesn’t. Under Windows, to regain control over updating, edit autoruns.

Be warned: editing Windows autoruns is perilous. Microsoft offers an app: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/downloads/autoruns

Note: autoruns run when the computer is booted or re-booted. For any modifications to autoruns to take effect, you must re-boot the computer.

Your comment indicates you know how to check the status of Windows services. If you’ve toggled the appropriate Brave autoruns correctly, after re-booting, you should find the startup type of the relevant Brave services “Disabled”. When you want to permit Brave to update, before starting Brave, change the startup type of the Brave services to “Manual”. After updating, to regain control over when Brave next updates, re-edit the relevant autoruns and re-boot.

I’m intentionally being somewhat cryptic about editing autoruns. Used inappropriately, Microsoft’s autoruns editor can really mess up your system. If you’re at all unsure how to do this, DON’T!

Your final paragraph notes that merely starting Brave when no Brave updates are downloaded can still cause significant internet activity. Chrome / Chromium extensions (which is what Brave allows) automatically check for and download their own updates when the browser is open. This is separate and distinct from the browser. Contrasting: Firefox gives users control over downloading updates for both the browser and any installed extensions.

I must be missing something - I run Brave on openSuse Tumbleweed - Brave is updated only when I run the system updater (zypper). And I can opt out the update.

@NotDeveloper mentioned using Brave under Windows, hence, my Windows-related reply. There’s a more-or-less concurrent post Disabling Auto Update describing the same problem — no user control over Brave updates — on a Mac.

And yes, I agree with you: one of my installs allows dual-booting — Windows 7 or Ubuntu. Consistent with your experience with openSuse, when I boot Ubuntu I have control over what’s updated and when. But that’s not what this thread’s OP was asking about.

Today I remembered about FastBoot from ASUS and tried to disable BraveSoftwareUpdateTaskMachineCore. I’m not sure this will work, but …

As a test, I did this same procedure and Brave does not auto-update.

PS C:\Windows\system32> Get-Service | Select-Object -Property *| Where-Object {$_.Name -like "*brave*"}

Name                : brave
RequiredServices    : {RPCSS}
DisplayName         : Brave Update Service (brave)
DependentServices   : {}
ServiceName         : brave
ServicesDependedOn  : {RPCSS}
ServiceHandle       : SafeServiceHandle
Status              : Stopped
ServiceType         : Win32OwnProcess
StartType           : Disabled

Name                : bravem
RequiredServices    : {RPCSS}
DisplayName         : Brave Update Service (bravem)
DependentServices   : {}
ServiceName         : bravem
ServicesDependedOn  : {RPCSS}
ServiceHandle       : SafeServiceHandle
Status              : Stopped
ServiceType         : Win32OwnProcess
StartType           : Disabled

EDIT: Also, be sure to disable these Tasks.

brave-tasks

For what it’s worth, I’ve had a very similar problem where disabling these two Windows services did not prevent Brave from downloading and installing updates. I have no idea why the services are there in the first place if they don’t prevent updates from occurring when they’re disabled. It makes one wonder…

Something to be aware of is that there’s also two scheduled tasks that must be disabled. Beyond that, I just modify the file permissions for BraveUpdate.exe so that it can’t be executed. You can be sure that this will prevent updates from occurring.

My reasoning for disabling it is different than yours, but either way, I agree. Users should be given full control over whether updates are downloaded and installed automatically, straight out of the box. Maybe have it prompt for elevation when toggling on or off…

1 Like

Thanks for pointing out my oversight - I’ve corrected the original.

And there’s actually two scheduled tasks, not just one. My bad. I forgot about the second one.