Auto update unreal engine launcher fail

Cutting your internet connection should work, because offline mode works.
When you are offline, you can’t know there are updates :wink:

Cheers mate

I tried opening Unreal today and it automatically starts updating the unreal launcher… Can I turn this off? I run a computer lab at a college and I don’t want this to automatically update - it then asks for admin password… not good - students do not have that info. It fully downloads but then fails at the install. Is there a work around?

I guess that would work but this is unacceptable as the computers are in a computer lab on a college campus… There is not a pref to turn off the automatic updates? Really? I’m on an iMac OSX 10.9.2…

It is enough to cut until the launcher started.

Hi dmichael,

After the install fail, are you still able to use the launcher to load the editor, and download sample projects?

Yep - I can open the editor up and open projects… I have not tried downloading sample projects… I’m in that computer lab later tonight - I will give it a try then. By the way I’m using version 4.2.1.
Doug Michael

I seemed to be able to download a free project but then the downloaded project would not open… The error message was; failed to open descriptor file ‘/Users/Shared/UnrealEngine/4.2/Blackjack/Blackjack.uproject’

I’m in the same situation. College computer lab, deep freeze wipes out changes each reboot, unreal will need to download the same data day after day. Running windows 7 and 8.

Has this been solved yet…? I find it ridiculous that I can’t turn off the auto update for the Unreal launcher app. The problem is this is a computer lab at a college - the computer drives are locked… so once locked, updates are not good as they will not stick. We freeze an environment so it is the same at each reboot. So now when a student opens the unreal launcher app they will see this update process but can’t finish it because the drives are locked. Turning off the internet is not the solution… this needs to be fixed or point me to where I can turn off the auto update.
Thank you.

Hi everyone,

My apologies for the delay in getting this back to you. We have a write up below on the current option to disable launcher patching at start-up. While this solution will help you get past the launcher updates it is important the admins of the computer labs or school computers update the launcher on a regular cadence as there is the possibility of missing both new functionality and a breaking change that would render an older version of the launcher unusable

Secondly, when working with projects or content, it is important to save your projects to a student drive, usb, or other location to ensure those projects are not lost due to a machine wipe or reset.

Here is a brief explanation of the -noselfupdate command, as well as instructions on how to use it:

Adding the -noselfupdate command to the Launcher will prevent it from detecting and trying to download updates. It should be noted that this will prevent the Launcher from ever detecting updates in the future, which may cause users to miss critical updates to functionality.

To add -noselfupdate on Windows:

  1. Locate the “Unreal Engine” shortcut on the Windows desktop
  2. Right-click this icon and select Properties
  3. In the Target line of the Properties window, add “-noselfupdate” (minus quotation marks) after the Launcher path

Example:“C:\Program Files\Unreal Engine\Launcher\Engine\Binaries\Win64\UnrealEngineLauncher.exe” -noselfupdate

  1. Click OK to save the changes

To add -noselfupdate on Mac:

  1. From the Finder, click Go > Utilities
  2. Locate and launch the Terminal app
  3. Type “open” without the quotation marks
  4. Locate the installed Unreal Engine Launcher application and drag it to the Terminal window. The terminal window should then display something similar to the following: “open /Applications/Unreal\”
  5. Place a space after “app” and then type in “-args -noselfupdate” (minus quotation marks). It should then look something like this (minus quotation marks): “open /Applications/Unreal\ --args -noselfupdate”
  6. Press Enter
    Please note that the Windows shortcut will only need to be changed once to launch with a commandline, whereas the Mac process will need to be followed every time a user wishes to launch with this command.


Hello Adam,
Thanks for the fix - it doesn’t seem to be working on the mac side… probably user error… when I type in ‘-args -noselfupdate’ (without quotations), I get, ‘-bash: open/Applications/Unreal No such file or directory.’ When I type in ‘–args -noselfupdate’ (without quotations), I get ‘-bash: /Applications/Unreal is a directory’

Typing ‘open’ gives me a list of commands within the terminal… I can just drag the unreal engine app into the terminal…
Thanks for your help,

Hello Adam,
Here’s my terminal window… I’m getting the No such file or directory… This seems like a clunky way to turn off auto updates… I think many users could benefit from having the option to turn auto update on or off… Most apps have this… just my 2 cents… below is my terminal window text…

ATC110-iMac-20:~ student$ open/Applications/Unreal\ -args -noselfupdate
-bash: open/Applications/Unreal No such file or directory
ATC110-iMac-20:~ student$ open/Applications/Unreal\ --args -noselfupdate
-bash: open/Applications/Unreal No such file or directory

Hi dmichael, you need a space after open.

To make it a little better, in your applications folder run AUTOMATOR, create a new APPLICATION, search for RUN SHELL SCRIPT, drag it into your workflow, remove the default CAT line, type in (minus quotation marks):

“open /Applications/Unreal\ --args -noselfupdate”

then save your file.

Now all you have to do is double click the file you just created.

Hi dmichael,

When you installed the Launcher, did you install it to the Applications folder, or somewhere else?

Hi everyone,

While I cannot say that this will help to resolve this particular issue, I wanted to provide an update that we have posted a guide for Academic Installation for UE4.

A new, community-hosted Unreal Engine Wiki - Announcements - Epic Developer Community Forums

Please be aware that we aim to improve the process over time.


Just created ‘Unreal Engine’ shortcut on the Windows desktop. press with the right button on properties and
in the Target line of the Properties window, add “-noselfupdate” (minus quotation marks) after the Launcher path. then ok and automatic updates will be turned off.



I’m getting the No such file or directory… This seems like a clunky way to turn off auto-updates.