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Service Updates on a Server Core Server

Published: August 15, 2012

Updated: August 15, 2012

Applies To: Windows Server 2012



This topic discusses the various ways you can keep a Server Core server up to date with updates. You can service updates in the following ways:

  • Using Windows Update automatically or with WSUS. By using Windows Update, either automatically or with command-line tools, or Windows Server Update Services (WSUS), you can service servers running a Server Core installation.

  • Manually. Even in organizations that do not use Windows update or WSUS, you can apply updates manually.

 

Task Description

1.1. Manage updates automatically with Windows Update

Managing updates automatically with Windows Update

1.2. Manage updates with WSUS

Managing updates with Windows Server Update Services

1.3. Manage updates manually

Managing updates manually

noteNote
This topic includes sample Windows PowerShell cmdlets that you can use to automate some of the procedures described. For more information, see Using Cmdlets.

To verify the current Windows Update setting, at a command prompt, run the following command:

Cscript scregedit.wsf /AU /v

To enable automatic updates, run the following commands:

Net stop wsuaserv

cscript scregedit.wst /AU 4

net start wsuaserv

To disable automatic updates, run the following commands:

Net stop wsuaserv

cscript scregedit.wsf /AU 1

net start wsuaserv

If the server is a member of a domain, you can also configure Windows Update using Group Policy. For more information, see http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=192470. However, when you use this method, only option 4 (“Auto download and schedule the install”) is relevant to Server Core installations because of the lack of a graphical interface. For more control over which updates are installed and when, you can use a script which provides a command-line equivalent of most of the Windows Update graphical interface. For information about the script, see http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=192471.

To force Windows Update to immediately detect and install any available updates, run the following command:

wuauclt /detectnow

Depending on the updates that are installed, you might need to restart the computer, although the system will not notify you of this. To determine if the installation process has completed, use Task Manager to verify that the Wuauclt or Trusted Installer processes are not actively running. You can also use the methods in the “Viewing installed updates” section to check the list of installed updates.

If the Server Core server is a member of a domain, you can configure it to use a WSUS server with Group Policy. For more information, see http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=192472.

If the server is not a member of a domain, edit the Registry to configure it to use a WSUS server. For more information, see http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=192473.

Whenever you configure WSUS settings, be sure to select options that are valid for Server Core installations. For example, since there is no graphical interface, there is no way to receive WSUS notifications. For more control over which updates are installed and when, you can use a script which provides a command-line equivalent of most of the Windows Update graphical interface. For information about the script, see http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=192471.

To install an update manually, download the update and make it available to the Server Core computer, and then run the following command:

Wusa <update>.msu /quiet

noteNote
Depending on the updates that are installed, you may need to restart the computer, although the system will not notify you of this.

To uninstall an update manually, download the update and make it available to the Server Core computer, and then run the following command:

Wusa /uninstall <update>.msu /quiet

noteNote
Depending on the updates that are installed, you may need to restart the computer, although the system will not notify you of this.

To view installed updates, run either of these commands:

systeminfo

wmic qfe list

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