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How to Update Homebrew Casks & Formulae on macOS

This post provides a step-by-step guide with a list of commands on how to update homebrew formula on macOS using Homebrew Commands.

What is Homebrew?

Homebrew is a free and open-source software package management system that simplifies the installation of software on Apple’s macOS operating system. It is known as the missing package manager for macOS.

Why Update Formula?

After you installed a number of packages on your macOS making use of Homebrew, it is only a matter of time before newer versions of those packages are available and you need to upgrade those packages. Homebrew offers a very simple way to upgrade your packages. By running the brew update & brew upgrade commands, all of your installed packages will be updated, but you may want to update only specific packages. This post will list the commands required to update and upgrade specific packages.

Brew Commands

This section provide a quick set of commands on how to update homebrew formula on macOS using Homebrew. It is assumed that Homebrew is already installed. If not, please follow this link.

brew update                   # Fetch latest version of homebrew and formula.
brew list                     # List all the installed formulae.
brew outdated                 # Show formulae with an updated version available.
brew upgrade                  # Upgrade all outdated and unpinned brews.
brew upgrade [formula]        # Upgrade only the specified brews (but do so even if they are pinned)
brew pin    [formulae]        # Pin the specified formulae (Prevents from being upgraded - 'brew upgrade').
brew info   [formulae]        # Display information about formula.
brew cleanup                  # For all installed or specific formulae, remove any older versions from the cellar.


Congratulations! You have successfully updated packages on macOS making use of Homebrew. Follow me on any of the different social media platforms and feel free to leave comments.