Windows Patch Management Software for Patching Microsoft Windows Devices

Patch Management Best Practices e-book

A Windows patch management software is a solution that automates the Windows patching process in your enterprise network, from scanning and identifying the missing Windows patches to testing and deploying these updates to the required systems.

Windows patch management (or Windows patching process) involves updating and maintaining the Windows operating system and its related software applications to ensure security, stability and performance of Windows-based environment. Microsoft patch management encompasses the entire workflow, right from scanning and detecting the missing patches to downloading, testing & approving the patches and finally deploying them to the required systems in the network. With servers playing a critical role, Windows server patching is vital in bolstering the network security of your enterprise. Windows server patching is the process of installing and patching all the servers in your IT environment. 

The Windows patch management process also includes generating reports of the deployment process for audits and compliance purposes. A well-organized Windows patch management strategy can significantly reduce the exposure to security risks and maintain a secure Windows-based environment. Using a patch management solution, the entire Windows patching process can be automated, so that admins don't need to go around to every computer and manually check whether all missing patches were identified and deployed. The Windows patch management software also generates reports for you to confirm if the Windows patches have been deployed properly.

How to do patch management in Windows devices?

Microsoft releases security updates for all of its products on the second Tuesday of every month known as the Patch Tuesday. With a plethora of patches being released this week, it can be crucial for admins to prioritize the patches and then deploy them to the systems.

Here are some of the best practices that you can follow to perform Windows patching in your network:

  1. Severity-based prioritization
  2. Microsoft assigns severities for the patches released, based on how severe the vulnerabilities are. These can range from Critical to Low and Unrated in some cases. Before deploying the Windows patch, it is crucial to prioritize them based on the severity.

    For example, Critical and High severity patches should be deployed urgently. Patches of lesser severity can then be prioritized based on the regular patching schedules.

  3. Testing patches before deployment
  4. While regular Windows patch management is of paramount importance, it is highly recommended to test the patches before deploying them to the systems. In case the patches aren't tested for bugs/functional correctness, they can cause system downtime and employee un-productivity in the enterprise network.

  5. Broad deployment windows
  6. Deploying a Windows patch across the multitude of endpoints in the network can be challenging. However, to ensure a correct balance between employee productivity and network security, admins should create broad deployment windows spread over multiple days/weeks.

    This helps in streamlining Windows patching in the network as the broad window allows all the systems to be properly patched.

  7. Re-deploying failed patches
  8. Many a time, patch deployment can fail for certain systems due to inactivity or network issues. Not only does this affect system compliance but can also pave the way for critical vulnerabilities to exploit the systems.

    Hence, it is highly recommended to generate patch deployment reports for a holistic view of the network's patch status. This further makes it easier for admins to detect the unpatched systems and re-deploy the patches to them.

How to patch Windows with a Patch Management Software?

Microsoft Windows is the most widely-used operating system. With frequent security patches and updates released, manually applying the Windows updates to all the endpoints in a network can be a headache.

What's more? Deploying Feature Packs in particular can be tricky across several endpoints, given their large sizes. To simplify the Windows patching process, you can use a Windows patch management software such as Patch Manager Plus to deploy patches across your enterprise's network automatically. This creates a consistently configured environment that is secure against known vulnerabilities found in Windows and all other applications.

Patch Manager Plus is a standalone patching solution that deploys patches to Windows, macOS, Linux, and over 850+ third-party applications. If you're looking for end-to-end Windows patch management software, Patch Manager Plus checks all the boxes. It handles every aspect of Windows patch management, right from detecting and installing Windows updates, hotfixes, rollups, security updates, etc. to defending the Windows-based systems by testing patches before rolling them out to the production environment to ensure they don't cause any issues.

Here's a list of the Microsoft Updates supported by Patch Manager Plus:

  • Security Updates (ranging from Critcal to Low severity)
  • Service Packs
  • Feature Packs
  • Rollups
  • Preview Rollups
  • Optional Updates
  • Non-security Updates (ranging from Critical to Low severity)

Windows patch management using Patch Manager Plus

Not just updates for Windows, Patch Manager Plus also supports patching for over 850 third-party applications, antivirus definitions, and driver updates.

In addition to Windows computers and workstations, this solution, also lets you perform Windows server patch management. Right from a centralized console, this Windows patch management software detects the missing Windows server patches and deploys them to the required systems.

Patch Manager Plus' Windows patch management software features:

  • Supports deployment of Feature Packs

Patch Manager Plus supports the installation of Feature Packs for Windows OS. Each Windows 10 update comes with a lot of new features and enhancements to make a user's life easier. Patch Manager Plus automatically installs any dependency files before installing a Feature Pack.

  • Deploy Microsoft antivirus definition updates

If you're running Microsoft Forefront Client Security, Microsoft Defender, or any other antivirus on your network's computers, you can automate the antivirus definition updates with Patch Manager Plus. The Automate Patch Deployment (APD) functionality helps you schedule the frequency of scanning and updating the antivirus definitions in the systems.

  • Windows Rollup updates

Rollup updates are a cumulative setup of hotfixes that contains security updates and critical updates that need to be deployed immediately. In addition to Feature Packs, Quality Updates, and Optional Updates, admins can also deploy Rollups to the systems, right from the Patch Manager Plus console.

Supported versions

Patch Manager Plus' Windows patch management feature supports the following versions:

Windows OS

  • Windows 11
  • Windows 10
  • Windows 8.1
  • Windows 8
  • Windows 7
  • Windows Vista

Windows Server OS

When it comes to Windows server patching, here are the supported Windows Server operating systems:

  • Windows Server 2022
  • Windows Server 2019
  • Windows Server 2016
  • Windows Server 2012 R2
  • Windows Server 2012
  • Windows Server 2008 R2
  • Windows Server 2008

How does Automated Windows patch management help your enterprise?

Patch Manager Plus automates the entire Windows patch management process with its Automated Patch Deployment (APD) feature. You can also view the System Health Status, based on the number of missing patches by using this Windows patch management tool.

Managing your Windows patching with Patch Manager Plus works for both Active Directory-based and workgroup-based networks. In addition, network managers can completely automate their Windows patch management routine with just a few clicks, right from a centralized console.

Benefits of using Patch Manager Plus Windows Patch Management Software

Patch Manager Plus' Windows patch management feature adds the following advantages to your network:

  • Saves time and money: With the Automate Patch Deployment feature, the entire Windows patching process is automated, right from scanning for and deploying patches, to generating patch status reports.

  • Bolster your network's security: Most cyberattacks leverage known vulnerabilities to steal data and cause disruptions. Patching the known vulnerabilities as well as zero-days promptly further strengthens the security of your network.

  • Deploy the most up-to-date patches: Not just to thwart vulnerabilities, it is important to keep your Windows machines running with the latest Windows patches, so that you have access to the newer features and functionalities.

  • Detect, upgrade, and secure EOL systems: End-of-life systems pose a high risk to the security of the network, primarily because of the lack of security updates.
    With Patch Manager Plus' Windows Legacy EOL Systems, admins can detect the legacy (EOL) systems in the network and can either upgrade them to the latest versions or take precautionary measures to safeguard them.

    Patch Windows legacy (EOL) systems with Patch Manager Plus
  • Windows Server patching: While patching on a Windows server can be more challenging than for other systems, Patch Manager Plus lets you seamlessly achieve this with its wide patching support for the Windows Server operating systems. In addition, the Self Service Portal for patches coupled with the flexible deployment policies ensures minimal downtime with maximum patching capability.

Windows Patch Management Strategies

To perform Windows patch management using Patch Manager Plus, follow the steps below:

  • First, navigate to the Patch Manager Plus console and click on Systems > Scan Systems to scan for missing patches in your network.
  • Based on the severity of the missing patches, prioritize the missing patches with an important or critical severity level. You should approve these patches first, allowing the Automate Patch Deployment feature to patch your machines in the next available deployment window.
  • For patches with low or moderate severity, you'll have time to test those patches in a non-production environment. If they're not found to cause any problems post-deployment, then they can be rolled out to the production environment.
  • In the Patch Manager Plus console, navigate to Reports > System Health Report to see how your systems are performing post-deployment. The predefined patch management reports show you the patch status of your systems, amongst other things, allowing you to assess the security of your network quickly.


1) What is Windows patch management software?

Windows patch management software is a specialized patch management solution that streamlines the process of identifying the missing Windows patches in your network, testing, approving and deploying them to the required systems.

2) What is the difference between Windows Update and patch management?

Windows Update refers to the process of applying the latest Windows Feature Packs, Cumulative Updates, Rollups, and all other updates to the Windows systems.
Patch Management, on the contrary, is a broader term that encompasses the detection of missing patches in the systems, testing the patches, deploying them to the required systems, and generating reports for audits and compliance. This includes patches for Windows, Mac, Linux operating systems, and other third-party applications.

3) What are the benefits of Windows patching?

Windows patching has manifold benefits for the systems in the network. Some of the benefits are as follows:

  • Timely Windows patching protects Windows systems from vulnerabilities and exploits.
  • Windows patches add newer functionalities to the systems.

4) What are Windows patches?

Windows patches are updates released by Microsoft to fix an existing vulnerability in the Windows operating system or to add newer features to it. Microsoft releases security patches on the second Tuesday of every month, known as the Patch Tuesday. The other non-security patches are usually released in the first week of the month. In case of critical updates (for zero-days or critical vulnerabilities),  Microsoft releases out-of-band patches.