Patch management is the IT bread-and-butter matter. Why? It aims to detect missing patches and existing vulnerabilities, deploy the former to endpoints, notify IT admits of the latter, and much more besides — continuously scan the network, document the findings, to name just a few.
Imagine that IT specialists would have to do all the work manually — workstation after workstation if not for automated patch management. With a paradigm shift in the way we all comprehend a classic work environment, a host of enterprises moved online, meaning that IT departments would have to work out a way of managing IT infrastructure and resolving all the issues remotely. In the end, utilizing a patch management service appeared to be the most efficient and effective solution.
How to Set Up Automated Patch Management and What to Keep in Mind
To ensure that your patch management procedure is up-to-date and edge-cutting, you’d better choose an automated patch management solution that features:
Asset Management and Scheduled Inventory
Having a tight grip on an enterprise’s IT infrastructure is the foundation of IT performance. In essence, if an endpoint is left out, sooner or later, it will pose a real threat to the entire network, being an entry point for cybercriminals. That is why a regular automated asset inventory helps to keep every endpoint in sight and within reach.
Policy configuration is deemed to be one of the pillars of automated patch management. In some ways, it is an IT roadmap for successful management: what patch to deploy, how, when, under what circumstances — all these aspects should be unequivocally articulated.
Automated Patch Deployment
When everything is running smoothly and seamlessly, perfect is the enemy of good. Undoubtedly, automated patch distribution is a helping hand in delivering updates to endpoints — but all the same, IT specialists have to be keenly aware of what patches can be deployed automatically and in which situations.
Scheduled Patch Deployment
There’s no better option than delivering patches in off-hours. Such windows help minimize or even eradicate downtime. Also, in the worst-case scenario, IT departments will resolve an issue in much more favorable conditions compared to those frantic ones during the working hours.
Templates creation is yet another cornerstone of automation and optimization. Knowing all the main parameters and their differences, system administrators can re-adjust existing templates rather than develop every new one from scratch.
IT security is of utmost importance. If something goes awry, an effective automated patch management platform will react instantly, not only ringing the alarm bell but also triggering Plan B (if configured for such occasions).
Detailed Update Reporting
Reports on automated patch management sessions are vital to improving IT routine, leveling up IT performance, correcting errors, or optimizing the current approach to patching. The system itself generates such reports and then sends them out to IT specialists for further consideration.