Why does a download need to make changes to my device?

Hello: I am the system administrator and tried to download the upgrade from LibreOffice to LibreOffice 7.1.4. There is plenty of available space. Everything went smoothly until the manual download process asked if it could make changes to my device, a Windows 10 laptop. When I clicked “No” the download abruptly stopped. I am very security conscious and unwilling to allow device changes unless I fully understand their necessity. I was too caviler in the past and, if not for my malware protection, would have been burned. So, I am very cautious nowadays.

Why does Libre Office need to make changes to my device for a version upgrade? The answer may be obvious, and I may seem slow on the uptake, but I need to understand before acting. I appreciate any help you can provide.

the manual download process asked if it could make changes to my device

a download process doesn’t make changes to your device (besides adding a file to your hard disk). You must have voted for “Open File” instead of “Save…” and then 2 things happen:

  1. Download of the file to some temporary file (whose location depends on your browser)
  2. Execution of the downloaded file to start the Installation (and from here turn to answer of @Earnest Al)

Any program making changes to the Program folder and to registry needs permission. This has been implemented in Windows for many years.

You can check that is is the correct download using the SHA or MD5 hash (assuming same version) , here is a Microsoft forum answer on one way to check the hash. I can right-click to check it but I think that might be a program I installed quite some time ago to check downloads, I don’t think MS provides a GUI tool with Windows. You could even scan with anti-virus.

NirSift Utilities are now owned by Microsoft. Sha or md5 check is possible from context menu:

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