Monday, 14 May 2018 22:12

Malwarebytes for Mac A Solo Update Story


A pop-up for Malwarebytes Premium just popped-up on my Mac alerting me of a new version, but when pressed, told me that my version was already up-to-date, which was wrong.

The latest Star Wars movie, Solo: A Star Wars Story is about to hit cinemas later this month, but when it comes to the Malwarebytes Empire, I was unable to avoid an imperial entanglement

You see, if you use Malwarebytes on your Mac, you may have just received a notification telling you an update is available.

This just happened to me, but when I pressed the button to proceed further, Malwarebytes for Mac loaded, and told me I already had the latest version.

So, I clicked on the "Check for Updates" entry in the Malwarebytes menu at the top of the screen, only to be told that no updates were available.

This didn't seem right, so I clicked on the "About Malwarebytes" entry in the same menu, and saw that my Malwarebytes version was 3.2.36.

Article continues below image, please read on. Turn phone sideways if viewing on mobile for full image. 

Going to the Malwarebytes website, which automatically brings up the Mac version of the site when loaded on a Mac, I selected the free download, which I could see had a version number of, which is clearly newer than 3.2.26.

Double clicking on the installation file brought up the "Welcome to the Malwarebytes for Mac installer" screen, where I saw the text:

"Yep, Macs get infected.

"Malwarebytes for Mac is a free tool that scans for and removes threats that attack your system or your data, introduce unwanted behaviors, and degrade performance. Making your Mac, once again, your Mac.

"Malwarebytes 3.3 now introduces real-time protection, as a Premium feature, to keep these threats from getting a foothold in the first place. When you install Malwarebytes for Mac, you will get a free 30-day trial of this additional functionality."

I actually thought Malwarebytes 3.2 already delivered "real-time protection", so I'm not sure if someone stuffed up here, or what the reality is, but I proceeded with the update, pressing "Continue".

This brought up a screen of "Important Information", which told me:

"Malwarebytes for Mac 3.3.22


  • Added a Reports tab for viewing past events
  • Added functionality to support automatic activation of a Premium license
  • Added a setting to manage threat detection data
  • Improved handling of Premium licenses and notification of license-related events."

I pressed "Continue" again, which brought up the software license agreement.

Pressing "Continue again asked me to click "Read License", "Disagree" or "Agree". I clicked "Agree".

I was told this would take 27MB of space on my computer. I pressed "Install" to install and naturally had to type in my password for installation to continue.

Installation took less than 60 seconds, after which the program installed, opened up its main window, showed me that I was using a trial version for a few seconds, and then realised I was upgraded from a licensed full version.

Checking the "About Malwarebytes" menu entry showed that I was now on 3.3.22.

Article continues below image, please read on for the interesting conclusion that needed more needless fiddling!

Malwarebytes had an issue with this same thing on the Windows version of Malwarebytes a couple of years back, but they seem to have fixed it.

Why companies can't immediately and always get this right is beyond me, but hey, it can happen.

I ran a scan and thankfully, no Mac malware was found, with the scan taking approximately 40 seconds.

So, if you get a message that your Malwarebytes for Mac has an update, but the software itself says you need no update, please check the main Malwarebytes site itself, and do a manual upgrade if you need to.

I did, and you probably will too, but if the price of safety is a bit of vigilance, as opposed to vigilantes like Batman, then so be it.

Stay safe out there, just because you might not be worried about malware doesn't mean it isn't out to get you.

Oh, and just as I was about to end this article, I get a notifications bar pop-up telling me "Your Premium subscription has expired", which isn't actually the case as I only updated in March this year.

Copying and pasting the license key from March told me that I had exceeded the number of activations allowed, and asked me to go to "", which I did.

I logged in with my username and password, and deactivated my previous installation, only to then reactivate it again, whereupon everything was back to normal.

Grrr... it shouldn't be like this, Malwarebytes. I love your software and recommend it to all, but imagine a regular end-user having to go through this malarkey just to get things right, let alone being advised their version is up to date, when it isn't!

Hopefully Malwarebytes fixes this soon so it doesn't happen to anyone else.

FInally, Malwarebytes exists for Windows and Android, if you use any of these platforms, it's worth your while checking Malwarebytes out for yourself.


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Alex Zaharov-Reutt

One of Australia’s best-known technology journalists and consumer tech experts, Alex has appeared in his capacity as technology expert on all of Australia’s free-to-air and pay TV networks on all the major news and current affairs programs, on commercial and public radio, and technology, lifestyle and reality TV shows. Visit Alex at Twitter here.



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