Decoding WSUS (Part 1 – Intro)

For a long time now I have been wanting to learn how to use WSUS.  (For those who don’t know: Windows Server Update Services – thanks Colin ) It has been configured and running at my clients site for some time but I have never really gotten a hand on how to manage it properly and make sure it working.  In a recent meeting my dreams came true, okay, so not exactly my dreams but at least the WSUS portion of said aspirations.  So here goes a brief (but not overly so) introduction to WSUS

Firstly I am assuming we all know what WSUS is: WSUS is an automated way of ensuring Microsoft updates are delivered to all clients in an automated and repeatable fashion.  When you add the WSUS role/feature you change the way Windows updates work. Instead of going to the web to get updates you instead get them from your server.  This allows you to approve and decline updates for all machines from one interface (reducing user error) and also allows to save bandwidth since the clients get the updates from your server instead of the internet.

For the purpose of this article I will be assuming you have WSUS already installed.  If not here is a quick guide

1)      Go to Start -> Admin tools (or access them from Control Panel) -> Server Manager

2)      Here you want to add a role -> Windows Server update Services

3)      Click “Next” all the way through the screens to accept defaults

4)      If you want your clients to be forced to use Microsoft sites for the updates (not your server) you must clear the check box “Store updates locally” on the “select update source” screen

5)      You will most likely want to use an existing database on the “database options” page

6)      You can leave defaults on for the “website selection”


Now you will have WSUS installed.  In my next post I will show you how to actually configure WSUS.  The real “meat and potatoes” is on the way

Enjoy your appetizer 🙂