Microsoft shipped Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) yesterday. The long-awaited upgrade to Software Update Services (SUS) gives small-to-midsized businesses (SMBs) free software-patching functionality. Based on the company's new Microsoft Update backend, WSUS will be joined in July by two related tools--Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer (MBSA) 2.0 and SMS Extended Security Update Inventory Tool. Like Microsoft Update, WSUS has been years in the making. To fulfill customer requests, the software giant originally planned to ship WSUS (then called SUS 2.0) in early 2004. "We know that your number-one desire is for us to eliminate the need for patches," Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said during a keynote address yesterday at the Microsoft TechEd 2005 trade show.
Microsoft Update, the Web-based successor to Windows Update, is now also available. Like Windows Update, Microsoft Update provides patches and updates for Windows products but it also supports other Microsoft products, including Microsoft Office and Microsoft SQL Server. "Customers want us to do whatever we can to minimize the costs associated with updates, and this gives both consumers and IT professionals a single place to look for those updates," Microsoft Corporate Vice President Gordon Mangione said yesterday.
WSUS requires Windows Server 2003 or Windows 2000 Server with Service Pack 4 (SP4). For more information about WSUS and the free download, visit the Microsoft Web site.