Microsoft Previews Hotpatch for Windows Server Virtual Machines with Desktops

Microsoft this week announced that its Hotpatch capability is now available as a preview for users of Windows Server 2022 Datacenter Azure Edition with the "Desktop Experience" install option, as well as for Azure Stack HCI users.

Hotpatch removes a major headache for IT departments. It's possible to use it to update a Windows Server virtual machine without a reboot. Hotpatch can accomplish this feat because it applies the patch in memory, which doesn't disrupt running processes.

Microsoft already had released the Hotpatch capability for Windows Server 2022 Datacenter Azure Edition users, but it just worked with the headless Server Core installation option for Windows Server virtual machines. Now it'll also work if the Windows Server virtual machine was installed using the so-called Desktop Experience, which adds graphical user interface management capabilities.

The preview of Hotpatch for Windows Server virtual machines with the Desktop Experience is available from the Microsoft Azure Marketplace Gallery here. The announcement included installation instructions.

Microsoft also provides install instructions for the Hotpatch preview when it's used with "virtual machines built from a ISO" for Windows Server 2022 Datacenter Azure Edition in this document. Similar ISO instructions for deploying on Azure Stack HCI are yet to come, according to a Ned Pyle, a Microsoft principal program manager, in an April 18 Twitter post.

"You can soon deploy the Desktop Experience hotpatching for an Azure Edition VM on Azure Stack HCI with the steps at… (we're still getting the updated patch enablement MSU in that FWLINK, bear with us)," Pyle wrote.

Microsoft is promising that its Hotpatch mechanism reduces reboots and deploys updates faster with a smaller footprint. IT pros can install the preview from the Azure Portal, or they can use an Azure Resource Manager template and the Azure Command-Line Interface with PowerShell.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for 1105 Media's Converge360 group.


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