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Patches&sevice packs RRS feed

  • Question

  • wat is the difference between service packs and patches?
    Saturday, August 6, 2011 4:40 AM

Answers

  • Patches are released regularly by Microsoft and fix a specific problem with a piece of their software. Microsoft categorizes their patches with the most important being categorized as critical. Microsoft has one of the best records in the industry in this area, including a regular schedule of patch releases (second Tuesday of every month), outstanding communication to interested parties about the patching process (they email us to warn us of everything that is coming out before it hits) and free support for problems created by patches.

    A service pack, by contrast, is a collection of patches (regardless of category) all bundled together into a single installation. The key difference between a service pack and a patch, however, is that a service pack is MUCH more heavily regression tested than a patch. That means that not only does Microsoft test to make sure that the things the patches are supposed to fix are fixed, but they also test everything else � even the things the patches have nothing to do with.

    The net result of all of this is that we have to evaluate each patch on an individual basis to determine what our customers exposure will be without installing the patch, what category the patch is in (we generally only install critical patches between service packs), what impact the installation might have and whether or not to install the patch. With a service pack, however, we can take much greater comfort in all of the additional testing that has taken place, and therefore we will install the service pack on every customer�s computers after a round of initial testing just to be doubly safe.

    Refer the link for "Service Packs better than patches": http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc723731.aspx

    • Proposed as answer by Abhay_78 Saturday, August 6, 2011 6:33 AM
    • Marked as answer by Peja Tao Tuesday, August 9, 2011 5:10 AM
    Saturday, August 6, 2011 5:06 AM

All replies

  • Patches are released regularly by Microsoft and fix a specific problem with a piece of their software. Microsoft categorizes their patches with the most important being categorized as critical. Microsoft has one of the best records in the industry in this area, including a regular schedule of patch releases (second Tuesday of every month), outstanding communication to interested parties about the patching process (they email us to warn us of everything that is coming out before it hits) and free support for problems created by patches.

    A service pack, by contrast, is a collection of patches (regardless of category) all bundled together into a single installation. The key difference between a service pack and a patch, however, is that a service pack is MUCH more heavily regression tested than a patch. That means that not only does Microsoft test to make sure that the things the patches are supposed to fix are fixed, but they also test everything else � even the things the patches have nothing to do with.

    The net result of all of this is that we have to evaluate each patch on an individual basis to determine what our customers exposure will be without installing the patch, what category the patch is in (we generally only install critical patches between service packs), what impact the installation might have and whether or not to install the patch. With a service pack, however, we can take much greater comfort in all of the additional testing that has taken place, and therefore we will install the service pack on every customer�s computers after a round of initial testing just to be doubly safe.

    Refer the link for "Service Packs better than patches": http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc723731.aspx

    • Proposed as answer by Abhay_78 Saturday, August 6, 2011 6:33 AM
    • Marked as answer by Peja Tao Tuesday, August 9, 2011 5:10 AM
    Saturday, August 6, 2011 5:06 AM
  • wat is the difference between service packs and patches?

    A patch has one fix while a service pack has many fixes in it .
    Abhay Chaudhary OCP 9i, MCTS/MCITP (SQL Server 2005, 2008, 2005 BI) ms-abhay.blogspot.com/
    Saturday, August 6, 2011 6:33 AM
  • Hi Johnny,

    In Simple terms,

    A patch is essentially called hot fix which is primarily  designed to address a specific bug reported post release of the product.Microsoft time to time work on these reported bugs & releases fixes to address them as patches. Patches are only to be applied only in case where you having issues which is fixed in that patch.

     

    Service Pack on other hand is essentially a pack which comes with all previous hotfixes thoroughly tested and accepted bundled together in single pack.Microsoft releases service pack from time to time though not as frequently as patches.When a new service pack is released , it generally identified by major build number. The best part is all these service packs are cumulative in nature.

    Hope this answers your question.


    Regards, Vishal Srivastava
    Sunday, August 7, 2011 5:58 AM