Most IT admins will agree that patching systems such as Windows clients and especially Windows servers involve some degree of risk. If you’re not convinced of this, take a look at my earlier article titled Have Microsoft patches reached a painful tipping point? here on our TechGenix site. In that article. I shared some stories that demonstrated that the pain of keeping up with the sheer number Microsoft patches has become unbearable for many admins, and I concluded that something has to change, and soon. Then in a follow-up article titled I described a bunch of mitigating steps we can all take as patch management admins to stave off impending doom. These steps were basically practical tips such as waiting a week before applying any software updates and using several reliable sources to review all the known issues concerning the updates you are going to deploy.

While the steps I outlined can be of practical help for patch management admins, they don’t deal directly with the core issue of risk. What I mean is that each time you apply a newly released update to an operating system or application to address some security or reliability issue with the software, you risk having something…

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