Users of the Samsung Captivate, AT&T’s version of the Samsung Galaxy S, have been stuck with a somewhat sloppy and terribly buggy Android 2.1 release until recently when AT&T announced that finally the phone will receive the update it was promised last year.

As mentioned previously, user frustrations with purchasing a device on the platform were rooted in massively delayed updates leaving you versions behind the current Android release. Within two months of users finally getting the update, Android 2.4 is set for release in to the wild. Users can only assume an update to 2.3, if it happens at all, will come around the time 2.5 is ready.

In order to receive this update, you need to download Samsung Kies Mini, a smaller and less desktop-looking version of Samsung’s┬áproprietary┬ásyncing and update program. At the time this article is written, this utility appears made to work only on Windows machines, though Mac users have reported CrossOver for OS X has worked, allowing them to make the update.

Before you sync the phone and begin the update process, it must be charged to at least 80-90% before the program will allow the update to take place. This is done due to the risk of a dead battery causing the phone to turn in to a useless paperweight.

Once you plug the phone in to the USB cable connected to your machine, unlock the phone and choose “Firmware Update” as the sync option. Kies Mini will then check your phone’s current firmware version and a large button on the lower left quadrant of the window titled “Phone Upgrade” will light up. Simply click it, accept terms and conditions, and begin the update process.

At this time, you have about 5-10 minutes before anything else needs to be done. During the update, the phone’s screen will display various screens including one with a giant yellow warning sign reminding you not to unplug or turn off the phone until the process is complete. Once the Samsung Kies window indicates the update is complete, you’re ready to go.

While the process is mostly non-destructive, it’s important to remember to back up your important photos, videos, and contacts prior to upgrading your phone’s OS. If everything goes exactly as planned, the only action required is the replacement of your shortcuts and widgets. Programs, email, and browser settings retained their configurations after the upgrade.

Helpful Link: Samsung Kies Mini Download