Wednesday, 11 August 2004

Microsoft has published this list of dates for where and how XP SP2 will be made available:

  • From 8/06 - Release to manufacturing
  • 8/09 - Release to Microsoft Download Center (full network install package)
  • 8/10 - Release to Automatic Updates (for machines running pre-release versions of Windows XP SP2 only)
  • 8/16 - Release to Automatic Updates (for machines not running pre-releases versions of Windows XP SP2)
  • 8/16 - Release to SUS
  • Later in August - Release to Windows Update for interactive user installations

UPDATE: If you have to deploy to an organization, you should read this guide.

Other Methods of Deployment
In addition, they have published an article and related tools called "Temporarily Disabling Delivery of Windows XP Service Pack 2 Through Windows Update and Automatic Updates," which offers a number of options to IT operations shops that may need to delay the auto-updating of SP2 on any one of a number of machines, until testing can be completed. The tools allow you to temporarily disable application of the service pack via Windows Update, as well as to re-enable it. The article also discusses some of the benefits of using Software Update Services (SUS) or Systems Management Server (SMS) to deploy SP2.

By the way, a little about SUS: Do you have a company that relies on Windows Updates to patch your computers, but wish you had more control over the process? Ever have a patch cause a problem because you didn't get to test it first? SUS is your answer. Information on SUS is available at www.microsoft.com/sus. Note that SUS is available as a free download to customers with a Windows Server 2003 or Windows 2000 Server license and can be downloaded from here.

For those who are thinking they'll just block the Windows Update IP address or URL at the firewall or content filter, think again... Laptops, anyone? You get the picture. Plus, a firewall block would just be a cheap, lazy "solution" that would break every other update. Read the article and the FAQ.



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IT Security | Tech
Wednesday, 11 August 2004 06:57:56 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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