Managed Software Center - Munki

Note: Technology Services at FAA is in the process of transitioning our Knowledge Articles to Answers, the campus-wide Knowledge Resource. The contents of the article below can now be found on Answers here.


This article provides information about Managed Software Center (formerly Managed Software, aka Munki), which provides software installs and updates to managed Mac computers in FAA.

Impacted Systems

  • Managed Macs in FAA

Affected Users

  • Users of managed Macs in FAA


We will be transitioning from the older Managed Software to the newer Managed Software Center through the Spring 2015 Semester and summer of 2015. Computers running Yosemite (OS X 10.10) will receive the newer version first.

General Information

Technology Services at FAA provides software installs and updates to managed Macs using the Munki system. The client-facing component that offers and installs software is called Managed Software Center.

  • Updates to software are tested by Technology Services at FAA for about a week before becoming available to end users. In most cases, updates are released as a group on Mondays to minimize disruption, although important security updates are occasionally released at other points during the week.
  • If the computer is awake and online, Managed Software Center checks in with the Munki server at random times, on average every hour.
  • If updates or installs are available for the computer, Managed Software Center will automatically do the following:
    • If a user is not logged in, software will automatically be updated at the Login Window. If this requires a restart, the computer will be restarted automatically.
      MSU login window
    • If a user is logged in, the user will be prompted that updates are available.
      • The user can choose to install updates immediately by clicking "UPDATE" in the upper-right corner of the app. Or they can defer by quitting or minimizing the app, or just letting it be. Managed Software Center will not prompt the user again to install the updates until approximately 24 hours later, unless additional updates become available in that time period.
      • If an update requires a logout or restart, this will be clearly indicated. In either of these cases, if the user chooses to install the updates at that time, they will be logged out. And following updates, the restart will occur, if applicable.
        MSU offer updates
  • Lab and classroom Macs will not check for updates while a user is logged in and will only check for updates outside of normal class time.
  • If a user would like to have Managed Software Center check for updates immediately, they can find and run the app in the /Applications as follows:
    1. Open Finder from your Dock.
    2. Select Applications on the sidebar.
    3. Enter Utilities (generally by double-clicking).
    4. Double-click the Managed Software icon. (Note, this icon still uses the old name)
    5. Once the app is finished checking for updates the user can install them or defer any updates that are offered by ignoring, minimizing, or closing the app.
      MSC open manually

Base Installation Software

The following programs are installed as part of the base installation:

  • Adobe Flash Player (browser plug-in)
  • Apple iLife (GarageBand, iMovie, iPhoto)
  • Apple iWork (standard on newer Macs - Keynote, Numbers, Pages)
  • Apple OS X system updates
  • Google Chrome
  • Mozilla Firefox
  • Microsoft Lync
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft Remote Desktop
  • Microsoft Silverlight (browser plug-in)
  • Oracle Java (browser plug-in)
  • The Unarchiver

Additional Software

  • In addition to the base software, Managed Software Center/Munki can be used to deploy a wide variety of applications from Adobe Acrobat Pro and the Creative Cloud suite to Apple's Final Cut Pro X and 3rd party software such as Evernote and SPSS.
  • Our Packaged Software List is frequently updated and shows items that we have ready to install immediately. Please keep in mind that some of the software is free and some must be purchased before Technology Services at FAA can install it.
  • Technology Services at FAA can also install other software by request and can facilitate purchasing in many cases.
  • Managed Software Center/Munki is also used to add drivers and connections for drivers and to make configuration changes on computers.



Date Written: March 4, 2015

Date of Next Review: March 2016