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Best way to update virtual machines with windows updates

Posted on 2016-11-06
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2016-12-01
Investigating whether to do this with WSUS , SCCM etc

ESXi 6.0 enviroment though most of the hardware versions are at 8 (will update these in time)

Anyone recently implement anything similar. Have recently taken over a customer where they patch the servers (130 virtual servers) manually

Question by:Indie101
  • 3
LVL 124

Accepted Solution

Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 2000 total points
ID: 41876471
Yes, we use WSUS linked with Shavlik Patch Management, you'll not find a better patch management solution.


If you don't have the budget for Shavlik, I would use WSUS, it does not matter whether virtual or physical, although Shavlik does have management at the virtual level, as integrates with vCenter Server.

You can use Shavlik with and without WSUS, it really depends if you want to Authorise Patch release, rather than just relying on what Microsoft pushes out!

Author Comment

ID: 41876949
Thanks Andrew, and I see using it with SCCM is an option too?

Which would you recommend WSUS or SCCM?

What is the best route to authorise patching rather than as you say just rolling out whatever MS has
LVL 124
ID: 41877010
Just use Shavlik, and manage your patches, using Shavlik, which you can build groups, and allocate patches to groups.

If you already have SCCM you can use that, although it may take you alot longer to rollout SCCM.

e.g. Shavlik you'll be patching the same day, SCCM is a longer Project to install and configure.

Expert Comment

ID: 41909216
If you have SCCM currently deployed it is fully capable of patching VMs on VMWare Hosts.  The VM doesn't really care where it exists, if you can get an SCCM Client you can patch it.  You get a lot of other benefits when you have an SCCM Client on board the server as well, detailed inventory, usage and can deploy applications and enforce compliance items.   Shavlik is expensive and owned by VMware so they really like you to use that system.  SCCM Won't be able to do anything for your VMWare Hosts, but they do manage them pretty well with WMWare tools.  The question seems to be, do you have SCCM in place, many companies have a Microsoft Enterprise Agreement of some sort and I think they still include an SCCM license for your client computers as part of the desktop product, you need to buy systems center CALs for servers which include all the System Center Products and the licensing needs to be modeled out as to the best way to buy them.    So if your desktop team is using SCCM to manage the enterprise desktops it is a license buy, maybe setting up a Distribution Point, adding some AD site or Network boundaries for your servers and creating some RBAC settings to allow your server team and desktop team to use the same SCCM infrastructure to manage both environments independently.
LVL 124
ID: 41909233

"....... Shavlik is expensive and owned by VMware so they really like you to use that system......."

not quite true, Shavlik was purchased by VMware in 2011, but they sold it off, in Jan 2013.

So your info, is a little out of date...

 In April 2013, it was purchased by LanDesk, and since then it's become more powerful, when LanDesk integrated with Microsoft System Center (SCCM).

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