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How to Update OBS in 2021

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OBS is great for streaming and has lots of customisation and is very reliable. It often has hotfixes and updates as it is constantly being improved. These updates can bring new features, or fix existing issues that you may be encountering. Here is how you can update OBS to the latest version:

How to Update OBS

  1. Step 1: Check for updates within OBS. 

    Navigate to the Help tab on the bar at the top of the screen, and press, “Check For Updates.” This will 

    check if there have been any updates to OBS for you. It’s a good idea to do this every week or so when you’re not planning to stream or record right away, as updates to OBS are frequent.

  2. Step 2: Decide if you want to update.

    If there is a new update available, then a pop-up window will appear with the new version number and a list of changes that will be made during the update. If you are happy to update then click the “Update Now” button at the bottom of the window. Else, just hit “Cancel” and you can do the update another time.

    Alternatively, if the button in OBS itself isn’t working for you or you want to do a clean install, the OBS website will have the latest installer for your operating system available here: https://obsproject.com/download 

    Once you’ve got the newest installer, run the install to the location that you had installed OBS previously following the exact same steps as you did when first installing OBS. This will overwrite the old version you had and bring you up-to-date.

  3. Step 3: Allow OBS to make changes.

    After pressing “Update Now” your operating system may prompt you to give OBS permission to make changes to your computer. Once you grant these permissions, the update will begin. OBS will perform a final check for the update and then make the necessary changes. 

    As soon as the update is complete, you should try to launch OBS to ensure that the update has completed successfully. Once the software opens, you can double check that everything is working as expected and use it as normal.

    If you have any plugins installed for OBS, these will need to be updated separately after you update OBS and may not work otherwise. When using plugins, it may be wise to wait until their creators have released a compatible version before starting the new OBS update. 

When to Update OBS

There are a few ways that you can check if you need to update OBS:

  • Go to the OBS Studio website and check if the version number displayed on the front page of the website matches the one displayed in OBS in the top left corner of the window.
  • Use the “Check for Updates” button in the Help tab of OBS.
  • If you enable the “Automatically check for updates on startup” option in your OBS settings under the general tab, every time you open OBS it will tell you if there is an update available. This can be especially useful if you don’t want to spend time remembering to check for updates and would prefer to be prompted. 

Of course you don’t have to update OBS as soon as an update is available – there is the option to have OBS remind you later, to cancel an update, or to skip a version. It can be useful to wait until later to update if you’ve opened OBS to immediately start working or are happy with the version you’re on- there’s no need to put your content at risk.

Reasons to Update OBS

There are several reasons you may want to update OBS. For each update, there is a long list of hotfixes, new features and optimisations. Each update may resolve an error that you were running into, offer new ways to use OBS or make the program less intensive on your PC while recording or streaming. Of course, each time you update you don’t need to check over each line in the notes – but it could be worthwhile if there’s a particular feature you’re hoping for.

Frequently Asked Questions

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    Does OBS Update Itself?

    OBS doesn’t update itself in the background – this is to give you greater control of which version of the software you wish to use. If you’re comfortable with the version you’re currently using and haven’t run into any issues then there’s no need to update straight away. Plus, if an update does cause any new issues, this could cause problems if it happens in the background right before you get set up to stream or record!

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    Will Updating OBS Change My Settings?

    Don’t worry, updating OBS will not change your settings. Your configurations, hotkeys, and other personalizations will be kept through the update. If you do lose any settings after an update, something has most likely gone wrong, or you’ve downloaded the wrong update using the installer method.

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    How Long Does It Take for OBS to Update?

    How long OBS takes to update depends on your internet connection’s download speed and the read/write speed of the hard drive you have OBS installed on. Generally, updates to OBS are small and fast, though this can vary with bigger version changes, more features in an update, or major bug fixes. 

About the Author

Sarah

Sarah is a games development student and Twitch streamer from the UK. In her streams, she shares her love for video games and their craft. Outside of streaming, she loves gaming with her partner.

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