I'm trying to decide and plan how to install WSUS. We have a number of workstations (Windows XP, Windows 2000 - the win 2k ones are being upgraded at the moment)

I can't find any step - by - step guides on deploying WSUS, or where to install it etc..

Do i need a dedicated server? Or could I use one of our domain controllers?

Also, if anyone has any "idiot proof" guides to setting this up, it would be very helpful!


There's a step-by-step guide available on the MS WSUS page here: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/wsus/default.aspx

I wouldn't install it on a DC; these are the most important servers in your entire Domain, so it makes sense to not load up other software on them.

WSUS itself isn't technically difficult; the main issues you'll face will be in defining your patching policies, such as segmenting out a test group of PCs, deciding on an approval process, and so on.

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Our site has been running a WSUS server for 300 PCs for the last year with no problems. The server is just a desktop with 2Gb RAM and 2x 1.8 Ghz CPUs. Nothing special.

A few things worth noting:

  1. If you deploy your PCs using cloned images you will need to make sure that the WSUS unique ID in the registry of each PC is removed. The key is called something like "SusClientID". Delete this key and restart the "Automatic Updates" service and it is recreated. If 20 PCs all have the same unique ID, you will only see 1 PC in WSUS Console

  2. The install is reasonably easy, next, next next affair. But for the first while only assign it to a test PC or two.

  3. I found that occasionally some PCs had a very old version of Windows Installer/Update and went into wheelspin (100% CPU usage) trying to update. The simplest fix this was to go to updates.microsoft.com and let the site update the installer on that PC. (Even though WSUS is supposed to do that for you too.)

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  • That is why your meant to run something like sysprep when imaging computers, it fixes fields like that. – p858snake Nov 27 '09 at 0:38
  • Sysprep didn't remove it for me, so I now run a script to delete the key just after I sysprep. The script also does other things for other non-Microsoft programs as well. – Seanchán Torpéist Nov 27 '09 at 11:47

RunAs Radio recently covered WSUS with Susan Bradley some if you have time to listen to a Podcast on the way to work there are some great tips to be gathered.

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