We are going live with the new and improved "Windows Server Update Services" (WSUS) for all Active Directory clients as of tonight.
For whose who have not been glued to TechNet, WSUS is the renamed 2.0 version of Microsoft "Software Update Services (SUS), which we currently (until tonight) run in production for all AD client systems.
What does this mean for our clients? Not too much... anyone with a well-patched system will notice NO changes. Users who have never run "Office Update" will get Office XP SP3 or Office 2003 SP1 installed automatically, with post SP updates installed the next day. Users who have never run a manual "Windows Update" may receive an update to "BITS" and to the Windows Update Agent itself before any new critical updates come through (these will look like any other automatic update... nothing dramatic).
More info on WSUS follows, for those with "enquiring minds":
SUS allow for patching of the Windows operating system only. WSUS expands the scope of managed software to include:
- MS Office software (XP and 2003)
- MS SQL Server (including the MSDE desktop engine used by many applications)
- MS Exchange.
WSUS also introduces some nice client-side update agent capabilities including:
- Automatic background installation of updates which do not require a reboot
- Reboot prompting for critical updates which require a reboot (with frequent reminders...)
- Prompting to "install updates and shutdown" on any user logout/rebooot/shutdown/hibernate request, when critical updates are pending.
- Reboot prompting is now enabled for non-administrative users of a system.
- Improved background transfer of update files to reduce interference with user productivity
Anyone who has been using automatic updates on post-SP1 Windows XP systems at home will already be familiar with these new agent features. MS has been pushing this version of the update agent to end-users for a few months with good success.