I use Fedora Core 12 and I turned on automatic updates.
That is "a system that works for me" and I didn't need to pay or hire anyone to support the system.
There's a lot of areas where the Linux desktop is behind Windows. But in the area of automatic updates, Linux is way ahead. This matters not only because you get nice features, but because updating regularly is an important part of securing your system.
Firefox and Chrome rolled their own update system because their main audience is Windows. There is no system-wide update on Windows, except for Microsoft's code. They could nicely strip out all their updater code on Linux, and cooperate with upstream, but it's more work than just doing things the same way on both platforms.
The bundled libraries issue is the same problem. On Windows, you have to bundle all your libraries with your app, because there's no dependency management framework. You can't really trust the DLLs in the Windows folder because someone else might have put a different version there. And you can't put your version there because you might break somebody else who needs to use the earlier version.
Anyway, web browsers are kind of special. They've almost grown into mini operating systems over the last decade. Unfortunately, most of the wheels they've reinvented were rounder the first time around. At least it's an open platform, by and large.
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