Change update button behavior to download current installer

Use case or problem

Because Electron can’t currently update itself, the update button in the settings is frequently insufficient to, well, update Obsidian to the latest version. It also provides no in-app notification when this is the case or what to do instead. Worse, it seems to fully update Obsidian even when it doesn’t.

Proposed solution

Change the behavior of the update button in Obsidian settings to download the latest installer, and add brief OS-specific instructions on how to install the new version from the downloads folder, along with a few words reassuring the user that this will not overwrite the user’s settings or data.

Sooner or later everyone is going to have to do that anyway, so it would be a lot less confusing over time. And it would be a lot more realistic than expecting that every user will find and read the release announcement every time there’s a new version.


The button can still be called “update” and as now only notify the user when an updated version is available. What is important is changing what happens when the button is clicked. The proposed change described above would ensure that the user always receives and installs the complete update, including the latest version of Electron.

I’d go so far to remove that update section altogether so that we have to download a new version of Obsidian from their homepage. Admittedly, this patching feature is used friendly and nice but i don’t see much value in it so i go always for a new download if i effectively see a need to update, not just by habit.

Things get complicated because of all this framework dependencies, like Electron, Chrome, ect.
Other frameworks have their own bugs and development rhythms.

Would be nice if at some point Obsidian had their own framework to simplify development and improve performance but this won’t ever happen, i think.

I’m doing the same thing. It’s not a big deal for those of us who know enough to just download the latest installer every time, but as long as the update button’s behavior remains unchanged, there will be users asking on the Discord why Obsidian isn’t behaving properly, and the issue and workaround will have to be explained to them yet again.