Monday, October 10, 2016

Windows patches start getting cumulative for 7, 8, 2008, and 2012

In August, Microsoft announced that it was going to change the patching model used by Windows 7 and 8.1—as well as Windows Server 2008, 2008 R2, 2012, and 2012 R2—to something close to that of Windows 10.

In a break from Microsoft's older operating systems, Windows 10's monthly updates incorporate both security and non-security fixes into a single monolithic update. These updates combine not only each month's new fixes, but also the fixes from previous months. A similar system is being offered to those older operating systems. The patch on Oct. 11 is the first time this new system is being used.

The system for the legacy operating systems has complexities that Windows 10's patching lacks. There will be three series of updates in total. Two of these updates will be a monthly roll-up that combines security and non-security fixes, as well as a monthly security update that contains only that month's security fixes without any previous ones. They will be released on the second Tuesday of each month, known as "Patch Tuesday." The third update will be a preview of the next month—which combines the current month's cumulative update with the next month's non-security fixes—and will be published on the third Tuesday of each month. This will give users the ability to test the non-security portion of each month's patch before it's rolled out.

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