In this blog I will explain how to update the Windows Image with "Offline Image Servicing" functionality.
In ConfigMgr 2007 it was always a hard job, for keeping you images up-to-date. This because Patch Management in ConfigMgr must already be working, when creating and updating a new Windows image. I've see lot's of times, when creating new images, that Software Updates are not working in the Task Sequence. Then the whole proces must be started again (which is very time-consuming).
Also when updating the existing image, say after 6 months, new updates must be advertised to the collection where the device is placed. This whole proces is again time-consuming, because every month new updates are available. This will make the total deployment time longer, because some customers want all updates in there OSD Task Sequence, before the device is used by people.
In ConfigMgr 2012 things are completely different. Now it's not needed to update a new or existing Windows image in the Task Sequence anymore. Updates can inject immediately in the Windows image now, which is a great advantage! This is called "Offline Servicing" which is a new feature in ConfigMgr 2012. Of cource it's still needed to configure Patch Management in ConfigMgr 2012 to have this functionality available.
First create or import a WIM-based Windows image. Put this one on a distribution point, and (to make sure) make a back-up of it. Now select the Windows image, and select "Schedule Updates" to start the wizard.
The updates are shown now, that can be installed in the image. You have the choice here to select only x86 or x64 updates, or choose ALL updates. There is also the possibility to select all updates, or select them manually. In this case (I used a Windows 7 install image, without Servicepack 1) there are 96 updates available, out of 190 updates total.
I choose to install all 96 updates here, and I'm wonder how long it takes to inject that updates. Also I want to know how big the image will be after injecting these updates. Choose Next to go further.
There is an option available to immediately inject updates here, or start it at a later time (for example: during evening times or weekend days). Choose Next again to make it happen.
After a confirmation, the wizard will be completed. This is all happening within one minute, but the whole proces must still starting. For having this information open the "OfflineServicingMgr.log" file, which can be found in the ConfigMgr\Logs folder. Now there will be exactly displayed what's going on here.
At the end of injecting updates, there's even a new WIM image created. The old one will be renamed as BAK-image file. So making a back-up yourself is not needed this way! All this proces is very easy to use, and can be done during evening times or weekend days.
What a great new feature in ConfigMgr 2012 this is. It's not needed now to build and use a Task Sequence for Software Updates anymore! More (new) features will be explained in next blogs.