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Microsoft Patches Blocked for Some Admins

Microsoft works to correct issue that kept some administrators using System Center Configuration Manager 2007 from downloading the latest security updates.

Microsoft on Monday said it is working on a patch to correct an issue that has rendered some administrators using System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) 2007 unable to download and install last week's security updates.

On Friday evening, Redmond confirmed what it called "a deployment issue affecting customers using System Center Configuration Manager 2007 servers with Systems Management Services [SMS] 2003."

"Our initial investigation has shown the issue only affects Configuration Manager 2007 customers; no other detection or deployment technology is affected," wrote Christopher Budd, security response communications lead for Microsoft, in an e-mail on Friday to Redmondmag.com. "Additionally, only customers who are running Configuration Manager 2007 servers with SMS 2003 clients are affected."

Once dubbed Systems Management Server, SCCM helps corral components and settings for system administrators who maintain large groups of Windows-based machines. Among the program's chief attributes is that it enables administrators at a given enterprise to perform patch management, software distribution and operating system deployment in addition to keeping track of hardware and software inventory.

In response to user complaints, on Friday Redmond issued Security Advisory (954474), which offers guidance to clients and channel partners running the program.

Microsoft maintains that it is "actively monitoring this situation to keep customers informed and will provide additional customer guidance as necessary."

Coupled with using Windows Server Update Services or SMS 2003, administrators can determine if last Tuesday's updates are sticking to their systems by keeping a close watch on the Wsyncmgr.log, which details system activity on the SCCM 2007 site server.

About the Author

Jabulani Leffall is an award-winning journalist whose work has appeared in the Financial Times of London, Investor's Business Daily, The Economist and CFO Magazine, among others.

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