Removing old updates from WSUS

Applies To: Forefront Client Security

By default, WSUS retains all versions of updates that it retrieves from Microsoft Update. To free up disk space on the distribution server, it is recommended that you periodically use the program wsusutil.exe to delete old versions of updates. This is particularly important if the WSUS database is Microsoft SQL Server Desktop Engine (MSDE), which has a maximum size of 2 gigabytes (GB).

The program wsusutil.exe removes updates that WSUS has not deployed for over a month.

To remove old updates from the WSUS database

  1. As a local administrator, access the distribution server.

  2. Stop the WSUS Web site in Internet Information Services (IIS). To do so, open IIS from Administrative Tools, navigate to the WSUS Administration Web site, right-click the Web site, and click Stop.

  3. Open a Command Prompt window and change folders to %drive%\Program Files\Update Services\Tools.

  4. Type the following:

    wsusutil.exe deleteunneededrevisions

  5. After the command has completed successfully, restart the WSUS Administration Web site. To do so, right-click the Web site in IIS and click Start.

For more information about using wsusutil.exe, see Managing WSUS from the Command Line (