Methods of Servicing a Server Appliance


To keep a server appliance current after it has been deployed, you must ensure that there is a mechanism for applying the latest operating system (OS) updates when they become available. For information about the various types of updates that Microsoft publishes, see this Knowledge Base article.

The following table shows the methods that you can use to configure the server appliance to receive OS updates.

Method Description

Server appliance is configured to allow OS updates to be automatically applied from Microsoft

This mechanism keeps the OS up to date with the latest updates from Microsoft. Microsoft recommends this method.

However, if you want to control which updates are installed to ensure compatibility with the applications on your appliance, you might want to deliver the OS updates manually. Manual delivery can help limit conflicts with embedded applications.

The end user can configure the server appliance to receive updates automatically from a Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) server

The manufacturer can choose to allow the server appliance to retrieve updates from a WSUS server. The customer, who manages the WSUS server and server appliance, has some control over which OS updates are applied.

The server appliance can be configured to disable automatic updates, and therefore, the manufacturer must deliver the OS updates to the customer manually

The deployed server appliance does not automatically retrieve updates from the Microsoft Update service.

The manufacturer must redistribute updates for the Windows Server OS to the server appliance.

This method can help the manufacturer control the version and specific updates that are applied to the OS. However, the appliance must stay up-to-date with OS updates throughout its lifecycle to minimize security vulnerabilities.

You can use the Configure Automatic Updates setting in Group Policy to enable or disable Windows automatic updates in Windows Server. For more information, see Using Group Policy to Lock Down the Configuration of a Server Appliance.