Deploy updates now and track results with update management center (preview)

Applies to: ✔️ Windows VMs ✔️ Linux VMs ✔️ On-premises environment ✔️ Azure Arc-enabled servers.

The article describes how to perform an on-demand update on a single VM or multiple VMs using update management center (preview).

See the following sections for detailed information:

Supported regions

Update management center (preview) is available in all Azure public regions.

Install updates on single VM


You can install the updates from the Overview or Machines blade in update management center (preview) page or from the selected VM.

To install one time updates on a single VM, follow these steps:

  1. Sign in to the Azure portal

  2. In Update management center (preview), Overview, choose your Subscription and select One-time update to install updates.

    Example of installing one-time updates.

  3. Select Install now to proceed with the one-time updates.

    • In Install one-time updates, select +Add machine to add the machine for deploying one-time.

    • In Select resources, choose the machine and select Add.

  4. In Updates, specify the updates to include in the deployment. For each product, select or deselect all supported update classifications and specify the ones to include in your update deployment. If your deployment is meant to apply only for a select set of updates, its necessary to deselect all the pre-selected update classifications when configuring the Inclusion/exclusion updates described below. This ensures only the updates you've specified to include in this deployment are installed on the target machine.


    • Selected Updates shows a preview of OS updates which may be installed based on the last OS update assessment information available. If the OS update assessment information in update center management (preview) is obsolete, the actual updates installed would vary. Especially if you have chosen to install a specific update category, where the OS updates applicable may vary as new packages or KB Ids may be available for the category.
    • Update management center (preview) doesn't support driver updates.
    • Select +Include update classification, in the Include update classification select the appropriate classification(s) that must be installed on your machines.

      Screenshot on including update classification.

    • Select Include KB ID/package to include in the updates. Enter a comma-separated list of Knowledge Base article ID numbers to include or exclude for Windows updates. For example, 3103696, 3134815. For Windows, you can refer to the MSRC link to get the details of the latest Knowledge Base released. For supported Linux distros, you specify a comma separated list of packages by the package name, and you can include wildcards. For example, kernel*, glibc, libc=1.0.1. Based on the options specified, update management center (preview) shows a preview of OS updates under the Selected Updates section.

    • To exclude updates that you don't want to install, select Exclude KB ID/package. We recommend checking this option because updates that are not displayed here might be installed, as newer updates might be available.

    • To ensure that the updates published are on or before a specific date, select Include by maximum patch publish date and in the Include by maximum patch publish date , choose the date and select Add and Next.

      Screenshot on including patch publish date.

  5. In Properties, specify the reboot and maintenance window.

    • Use the Reboot option to specify the way to handle reboots during deployment. The following options are available:
      • Reboot if required
      • Never reboot
      • Always reboot
    • Use the Maximum duration (in minutes) to specify the amount of time allowed for updates to install. The maximum limit supported is 235 minutes. Consider the following details when specifying the window:
      • It controls the number of updates that must be installed.
      • New updates will continue to install if the maintenance window limit is approaching.
      • In-progress updates aren't terminated if the maintenance window limit is exceeded
      • Any remaining updates that are not yet installed aren't attempted. We recommend that you reevaluate the maintenance window if this is consistently encountered.
      • If the limit is exceeded on Windows, it's often because of a service pack update that is taking a long time to install.
  6. When you're finished configuring the deployment, verify the summary in Review + install and select Install.

Install updates at scale

To create a new update deployment for multiple machines, follow these steps:


You can check the updates from Overview or Machines blade.

You can schedule updates

  1. Sign in to the Azure portal

  2. In Update management center (Preview), Overview, choose your Subscription, select One-time update, and Install now to install updates.

    Example of installing one-time updates.

  3. In Install one-time updates, you can select the resources and machines to install the updates.

  4. In Machines, you can view all the machines available in your subscription. You can also use the +Add machine to add the machines for deploying one-time updates. You can add up to 20 machines. Choose Select all and select Add.

The Machines displays a list of machines for which you can deploy one-time update. Select Next and follow the procedure from step 6 listed in From Overview blade of Install updates on single VM.

A notification appears to inform you the activity has started and another is created when it's completed. When it is successfully completed, you can view the installation operation results in History. The status of the operation can be viewed at any time from the Azure Activity log.

View update history for single VM

You can browse information about your Azure VMs and Arc-enabled servers across your Azure subscriptions. For more information, see Update deployment history.

After your scheduled deployment starts, you can see it's status on the History tab. It displays the total number of deployments including the successful and failed deployments.

Screenshot showing updates history.

A list of the deployments created are show in the update deployment grid and include relevant information about the deployment. Every update deployment has a unique GUID, represented as Operation ID, which is listed along with Status, Updates Installed and Time details. You can filter the results listed in the grid.

Select any one of the update deployments from the list to open the Update deployment run page. Here, it shows a detailed breakdown of the updates and the installation results for the Azure VM or Arc-enabled server.

Example showing update deployment run.

The available values are:

  • Not attempted - The update wasn't installed because there was insufficient time available, based on the defined maintenance window duration.
  • Not selected - The update wasn't selected for deployment.
  • Succeeded - The update succeeded.
  • Failed - The update failed.

Next steps

  • To view update assessment and deployment logs generated by update management center (preview), see query logs.
  • To troubleshoot issues, see the Troubleshoot update management center (preview).