Microsoft Windows Server Update Services 3.0 Overview

Microsoft Windows Server Update Services 3.0 SP1 (WSUS 3.0 SP1) enables information technology administrators to deploy the latest Microsoft product updates to computers running Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Windows Server® 2008, Windows Vista®, Microsoft Windows XP with Service Pack 2, and Windows 2000 with Service Pack 4 operating systems. By using WSUS, administrators can fully manage the distribution of updates that are released through Microsoft Update to computers in their network.


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How WSUS works

WSUS provides a management infrastructure consisting of the following:

Microsoft Update

The Microsoft Web site that distributes updates of Microsoft products.

Windows Server Update Services server

This component is installed on a Windows Server 2003 SP1 or Windows Server 2008 server inside the corporate firewall. The WSUS server allows administrators to manage and distribute updates through the WSUS 3.0 Administration console, which can be installed on any Windows computer in the domain. In addition, a WSUS server can be the update source for other WSUS servers within the organization. At least one WSUS server in the network must connect to Microsoft Update to get available update information. The administrator can determine, based on network security and configuration, whether or not other servers should connect directly to Microsoft Update.

Automatic Updates

This component is built into the Windows Server 2008, Windows Vista, Windows Server 2003, Windows XP, and Windows 2000 SP4 operating systems. Automatic Updates enables both server and client computers to receive updates from Microsoft Update or from a WSUS server.