UpdateScan FAQ

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Q: What is UpdateScan?
A: UpdateScan is an exclusive GEUpdate feature that is meant to eliminate some of the problems surrounding third-party delays of update notifications. It is a super lightweight web application that checks our servers multiple times per minute and produces a pop-up alert when an update has been detected by our systems which provides you with the fastest notification possible by any standard.

Q: How does it work?
A: The script works by checking our servers roughly every 2 seconds and downloading a text file that shows when the last update was. It then compares it to some coded parameters that are used to decide if an update notification should be sent. If one is sent, a pop-up alert appears (that will go on top of all other browser windows) showing the precise time of the update (in both GMT and a local time if specified by the user), and the time the alert was received (again, in both GMT and local time). Once an update is detected, the script stops making requests to the server and you must close it and re-open it to have it continue scanning.

Q: How does it compare to certain IRC bots that have GEUpdate capabilities?
A: The biggest problem with IRC chat rooms (aside from needing to download programs) is that update messages frequently get lost in the chat buffer (if they are even set to announce). Here, the aim was to make it clear that an update has taken place, as quickly as possible. Our research has shown that we are vulnerable to third party delays by email and cell phone providers that we cannot necessarily account for. When you are merchanting, every second counts, we know. UpdateScan takes out the 'middleman' and puts us in more of a position to ensure speedy notification. Additionally, it has the added advantage of not making the user vulnerable to 'ping' attacks that have been used in the past by malicious users sending data to a users computer that may disconnect them from Runescape (while PKing for example), or the Internet which can be an extreme annoyance.

Q: Why is UpdateScan only for premium users?
A: Quite simply: It's a resource hog. Not on your computer, but on our servers. The script is designed to run 24/7 if necessary until it finds an update, and while you won't notice it while browsing the web or playing Runescape, our servers feel the full force of it. With so many users, we have to manage our resources effectively to provide for a better product. We do not wish to compromise our level of service.

Q: Are there any requirements to run the script?
A: A web browser with Javascript enabled. The script has been tested both in FireFox and Internet Explorer (latest versions), and is fully compatible. If you have a pop-up blocker, UpdateScan may not open, and you may need to allow an exception for GEUpdate.com. A fast internet connection will help (just in general), but won't make much of a difference. It's super light-weight.

Q: What do notifications look like?
A: A picture is worth a thousand words:
GEUpdate Update Time Notfication
(Times simulated for demonstration; Coloring a product of a FireFox theme and is not default)

Q: Why a pop-up window?
A: UpdateScan was supposed to operate in a tabbed web browser. However, when an alert is sent, the window will 'come to the top' of any browsing you are doing. This can be problematic for certain activities such as KQ/KBDing/God Wars, etc. By making it in a pop-up window it will appear front and center, but you can quickly click out of it if need be and resume your activities, without holding your entire browser hostage. Basically, it's meant to be non-intrusive.

Q: Will it slow down my internet connection?
A: No - it downloads a text file that is roughly 1KB in size; it will not lag your computer or slow down your internet connection.

Q: What is that flashing number, I can't read it?
A: That is the number of seconds since the last update that is what the script uses to process if a notification should be sent. The lower it is, the more recent an update was. It is flashing to simulate it working. That same number also appears below it in a text string that does not fade in-and-out, but will change as the number increments. This indicates the program is working properly.

Q: When does it send an alert?
A: It is programmed to send an alert if the time since an update is under 60 seconds. If it detects an update and sends a notification, the script will stop. You will need to close out of it and reopen it to start it scanning again

Q: Why not a EXE file/Flash file?
A: Trust. We don't trust EXE files. Why should you? This was built in Javascript/PHP, so it's open and does not do anything shady. Additionally, flash was not used because I hate Actionscript (the language Flash uses), and it's another dependency that you must have installed. As it is, it just 'works.' Good deal.

Q: Can I use UpdateScan and still receive Email and/or SMS alerts?
A: Yes! They are not mutually exclusive. In fact, our experience with beta testers has shown that those who use them together are typically the most successful.

Q: Are there any restrictions on where / when I can use it?
A: Nope, you can open it from any where in the world where you have an internet connection. I've even gotten it to work on my BlackBerry (which I really wouldn't recommend, it was more for amusement). Also, you can leave it running 24/7 if you want, it's like the Energizer Bunny, it will just keep going and going and going...

Q: Do I have to run it 24/7?
A: Not at all, there is no harm in having it open just while you're playing Runescape. It will save you from having to manually refresh GEUpdate. It's really up to YOU. That's how it should be.

Q: ...So, how do I get it??
A: UpdateScan is available to all Premium members by default.

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