Microsoft to Preview Patch Software at Management Summit

Expect Redmond to talk up its Software Update Services and SMS patching mechanisms at its MMS 2004 show next week.

At the Microsoft Management Summit next week in Las Vegas, software patching is set to be a hot topic.

According to the agenda for the conference, Microsoft executives are set to address at least two of the companys patching mechanisms: the Microsoft Software Update Services (SUS) 2.0 and Systems Management Server 2003.

Microsoft is set to outline its next-generation SUS 2.0 plans and architecture at the week-long summit, as well as offer more details on its SMS patching solution for enterprise users..

Microsoft considers both SUS and SMS to be part of its Dynamic Systems Initiative (DSI) manageability plan. And the SUS 2.0 release is expected to patch a host of Microsoft products, not just Windows (as the current SUS release does), if Microsoft follows through on its promises. SUS pushes to users Windows service packs and security updates.

Last year, many were expecting SUS 2.0 to be a 2003 deliverable. In December, Microsoft told beta testers it would have more to say about the SUS 2.0 beta in January. January came and went with no word.

Get More Info on Microsofts DSI Strategy

Check Out Microsofts SUS Site Here

SUS and SMS are just two components of Microsofts overall patch-management strategy. Consumers and small businesses can subscribe to Microsofts Windows Update to obtain user-initiated or automatically delivered software updates. Microsoft offers a similar Office Update feature for small office/home office Office customers.

At the same time, Microsoft has committed to deliver a new patching mechanism called Microsoft Update. Microsoft Update, which is expected to go live some time this year, is meant to complement Windows Update and will provide smaller customers with Windows, SQL Server, Exchange Server and Office patches in a single place.

So far, Microsoft has yet to release a beta of Microsoft Update.