Not a week goes by that I do not hear “my computer did an upgrade and now it does not work”. While this can happen, I often hear this and upon investigation discovered that no patches or upgrades were applied and the issue is totally unrelated. Patches and upgrades are easy targets and sometimes do cause issues. With that said, patches and upgrades undoubtedly resolve and prevent more problems than any that they cause.
What is the difference between patch and upgrade?
In software terms, a patch (or upgrade) is meant to address two issues. The first is to correct bugs (or problems) or fix security issues within the software that makes it perform less than optimal, and second to add new compatible hardware support. The later is due to the constant development of hardware since the launch of the application or device. Many times a patch will go unnoticed by the user of a computer. A good example of this would be a Google Chrome patch upgrading the version from version 58.23 to 58.86.
Upgrades are different in the sense that they do not address the two issues above, but rather create a new version of the product in question and may add or even remove functionality and features. Patches are often included in upgrades. A good example of this would be a Microsoft Word 2003 user “upgrading” to Microsoft Word 2016. This is a new upgraded version of the product that looks and works significantly different while keeping the core functionality of the application.
While there are many different philosophies on when and how to patch endpoint (computer) systems, at the Maven Group we employ an immediate patching philosophy. We do this due to the compliance regulations and security environment of most current workspaces. The philosophy is based on the idea that data and environment protection is the most important of the variables.
Windows patches are applied daily (assuming the endpoint is left in a position to do so). Application patch checks are performed hourly and applied as soon as the system allows for that application to be updated. You, as a Maven partner, do not need to do anything. We handle all of this for your Servers, Endpoints, etc. automatically. The only thing you need to do is perform this simple 60 second step (click the hyperlink).
You have to upgrade and patch. Not Optional!
I often hear, “I do not want to patch my computer”. I will not extend this post by listing the several excuses I am given for this, but unfortunately it is a ridiculous conclusion in my opinion. In fact, I would suggest this would be the exact same thing as saying “I do not want to put gas in my car”. Frankly, neither system is going to work without the other. This is not just my opinion, but industry fact. Please see the posts below for references.
Don’t tell people to turn off Windows Update, just don’t
Why You Need To Install Windows Updates Automatically
3 Reasons Why You Should Be Running The Latest Windows Security Patches & Updates
It is never the intention of the company providing patches/upgrades or ours implementing those processes to interrupt, interfere or disrupt business productivity. In fact, the reason to patch is to minimize downtime. While a patch, in rare instances, may cause some sort of disruption to use or productivity, the alternative to not patching and possible hijack, failure or data loss and the time it takes to remediate these instances makes the choice to patch/upgrade crystal clear.