Windows Autopatch is almost available. Microsoft expects to launch the solution in July. Autopatch automates the update process of Windows and Office 365 in large-scale environments.

Administrators have several options for updating Windows devices and Office apps. Microsoft Endpoint Manager, Windows Update for Business and Windows Server Update Services all facilitate mass updates.

The solutions are often used in combination with Patch Tuesday. On one Tuesday each month, Microsoft presents security patches from the past period. Administrators navigate to the overview, select the patches they want to include and deploy the updates via the aforementioned solutions.

The first Patch Tuesday took place in 2003. Now, almost twenty years later, Microsoft is working on an alternative system. Windows Autopatch is expected in July. The release may have a major impact on the workflows of administrators.

Windows Autopatch

Windows Autopatch makes it possible to roll out Windows and Office 365 updates phased and automatically. Autopatch processes all updates for Windows 10, Windows 11 and Office 365.

You decide how the updates are distributed. For instance, one can start with a small number of devices and automatically continue with larger groups. If an update causes problems, Autopatch stops the process to limit the damage done. Rollbacks are supported.

The solution has a number of conditions. Autopatch is only available to Windows 10 and Windows 11 Enterprise licensees. Devices must be managed by Microsoft Intune or Configuration Manager; accounts by Azure Directory or Hybrid Azure Active Directory Join.

If you’re already using Microsoft Endpoint Manager, Windows Update for Business, or Windows Server Update Services, Autopatch remains available. The system runs on top of existing update solutions. Should you want to update manually, the tool can simply be disabled.

Divided

We don’t expect everyone to switch to Autopatch en masse. Some organizations have been working with the same update process for twenty years. There’s a good reason. Microsoft’s updates regularly cause bugs, especially in environments with apps and hardware from various vendors. Autopatch makes it possible to test and restore updates, but restoring will always take time. Organizations with smaller environments are less likely to get stuck. For them, Autopatch is an interesting option.