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Introduction

Created by Caroline Juszczak, last modified by Steve.Hawkins on Jan 17, 2018

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video-small.gif   Check out this video (8:41) for an introduction to SolarWinds Patch Manager.

SolarWinds Patch Manager is a Microsoft® Management Console (MMC) that adds additional functionality to Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) and System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM). When installed on a WSUS or SCCM server, you can update Windows servers and workstations in your corporate network with Microsoft and third-party software updates.

You can install Patch Manager in a stand-alone deployment or an integrated deployment with an existing Orion Platform.  

SCCM is also known as ConfigMgr.

Components

Patch Manager uses the following components and devices in a deployment:

  • WSUS
  • SCCM
  • SQL Server database
  • Administrator console
  • Web Console
  • Managed computers
  • Patch Manager agents

WSUS

WSUS is included in supported Windows Server® operating systems. This software component distributes and manages updates and hotfixes released by Microsoft in a corporate enterprise. WSUS replaces Windows Update and allows system administrators to distribute Windows updates and hotfixes released by Microsoft to systems in a corporate environment. Patch Manager integrates with WSUS to distribute Windows updates, third-party updates, and custom packages to managed systems in your deployment.

SCCM

SCCM (or ConfigMgr) is a Microsoft systems management software product that manages large groups of computers in a corporate enterprise. Patch Manager integrates with SCCM to distribute Windows updates, non-Microsoft (third-party) updates, and custom packages to managed systems in your deployment.

SQL Server database

Patch Manager supports the following Microsoft SQL Server database software:

  • SQL Server Express
  • SQL Server Standard or Enterprise Edition

If you select SQL Server Express during the installation, Patch Manager installs SQL Server Express on the PAS with no user intervention. 

If you select SQL Server Standard or Enterprise Edition, install the software on a separate server and enter the database instance path in the Patch Manager Administrator Console. SolarWinds recommends this option to prevent a single point of failure and maximize database performance.

SQL Server Express has a 10 GB storage limit. If you exceed this limit, you must migrate your database to a remote server running SQL Server Standard or Enterprise Edition.

Administrator Console

The Administrator Console is an MMC 3.0-based snap-in that connects to the Patch Manager PAS. Use the Administrator Console to publish and manage patches, generate reports, and execute configuration management tasks.  Install the Administrator Console on the PAS or a remote workstation.

In SCCM environments, an additional Administrator Console integrates with the SCCM console.

Web Console

The Patch Manager Web Console is a read-only user interface that displays detailed information from a Patch Manager Application server. Install the Web Console on any Windows server that can access the server.

Managed Computers

Managed computers include WSUS servers, SCCM servers, and managed clients in your corporate enterprise. For optimal inventory and reporting functionality, deploy the Patch Manager Windows Management Interface (WMI) providers to all managed clients. See Manage Client WMI connectivity for details.  

Agents (Optional)

Patch Manager Agents provide a communications link between the managed computer and the PAS. The agents poll the server at set intervals using asynchronous remote procedure calls. Use Patch Manager agents when your managed computers are:

  • Disconnected from the corporate network 
  • Cannot be managed with WMI
  • Protected by stringent firewall rules or virtual private networks
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