Windows and Office-as-a-Service – Step 7 of Desktop Deployment

Windows and Office-as-a-Service – Step 7 of Desktop Deployment


(intense music) – Welcome to Desktop
Deployment Essentials, our new series to help
you prepare for your shift to Windows 10 and Office 365 ProPlus. So by now we’ve covered
steps one through six in our Modern Desktop Deployment Wheel and in the next few minutes
we’ll walk you through step seven as we explore
the servicing models for both Windows 10
and Office 365 ProPlus. Now both Windows 10 and Office 365 ProPlus introduce new servicing
options, support models, and update timelines. These changes simplify the process for staying current on
the latest features. Along with these updates are
new configuration options to enable servicing plans
that meet your needs. Updates fall into two main categories: Feature updates and then
Quality and Security updates, which contain Cumulative
Security, Reliability, and Bug fixes. In terms of Cadence,
both Windows and Office deliver a Semi-Annual Channel, which delivers new
features twice per year, around March and September, while quality and security
updates occur monthly. Additionally, unique to Office 365 apps we deliver monthly channel updates that are fully supported and contain both new features and quality updates. So okay, let’s pause for a second ’cause you might be thinking, ‘are these updates gonna be compatible? ‘Will I need to keep retraining my users? ‘And what are the risks?’ So let’s break this down and
explain some of the advantages of the new approach. First we’ve moved away
from the model of the past that would introduce huge waves of change every three or so years
to now more incremental, smaller ripples of change
with feature updates twice per year. Now with technology trends moving so fast and rapidly evolving security threats, this keeps you current. Some of the security related updates, for example, can’t just be delivered via monthly security patches. They may require low-level
changes to the platform like with virtualization-based security. Second, delivering quality
in security updates as a cumulative package corrects many of the issues from the past. It used to be that you’d pick and choose sometimes from up to a
dozen updates or more each month for both Windows and Office. As you can imagine, this
creates nearly an impossible set of test matrices for support. Also, if you install a one
or two-year old version of Windows or Office, it might take hours or even days to apply
all the updates delivered since that version was released. So now you’re always just one update away from being current with
cumulative updates, and we’ve reduced the
number of monthly updates that you’ll need to deploy. Each update builds upon
updates from previous months and contains all the fixes
that you need to get current, this is especially helpful
if a PC’s been turned off for several months
because it’s in storage. Another advantage is that
before we roll out these updates for broad deployment
we first release builds via insider programs
for Office and Windows. And this allows us to gather
telemetry and feedback ahead of us releasing
these updates broadly. Now the insider programs
are open to everyone, so you can get ahead of
understanding the updates. By the time that we release updates we’ll have received
telemetry from millions of configurations so that
when we do roll out updates quality is now inherently
more predictable. And one more thing,
because Office 365 ProPlus insider builds reflect
monthly channel updates, if you are using Semi-Annual
Channel for Office to deliver feature updates twice a year aligned to Windows you can now validate these builds early as well
using the Semi-Annual Channel targeted releases. We’ve also thought through how to make the deployment
of updates seamless. System Center Configuration
Manager Current Branch is updated frequently
to support the rollout of these updates to
both Windows and Office and any new related capabilities. Now let’s shift gears to how you’re gonna roll out these updates. For any release we recommend three different deployment phases for IT. Validation, piloting, and
broad production deployment. Once you’re up and running on Windows 10 and Office 365 ProPlus
you’ll use monthly servicing to stay current with critical
security and quality updates. Then you’ll move to Semi-Annual
Servicing for new features. Let’s start with monthly updating. The service model is designed
so that you can choose to limit the rollout of new
features to just twice per year. And if needed you can even
skip a semi-annual update and continue receiving
quality and security updates. As I mentioned, the cumulative
nature of monthly updates means that each increases
in size per month. Using a technology called
Express Updates in Windows and Binary delta compression in Office, we can reduce the size of
the download significantly. In both approaches, the update engines compare what’s on the PC and finds only the differentials needed
to update what’s there. Windows Update for Business and Windows Server Update Services have supported these Express
Updates for a long time, but now we’ve also added that support to System Center Configuration Manager so it can also use Express Updates. Binary delta compression in Office is only used if you’re updating
from the most recent version of Office 365 ProPlus. So to use this approach
you need to be updating from the previous build
and can’t skip updates. Windows and Office update channels can be managed by a Configuration Manager using the standard approval
and targeting process. Additionally you can use
policy settings in Office and Windows to enforce
update channels used as well as related settings. So those are your considerations
for monthly updates, but now let’s move on to the
larger semiannual updates. As we covered in Device and App Readiness you’ll wanna begin your preparation
for these larger updates using the same readiness tools
that we set up in step one of the Deployment Wheel. Now if you missed that episode you can check it out at the link shown. As for tooling, you
can use policy settings with Windows Update for Business, software update management
via a config manager or WSUS, or update policies set by Intune. And if you are concerned
about network bandwidth, check out episode two
in our Essentials series on Directory and Network Readiness to learn about your options
to reduce network traffic by delivery optimization or other peer-to-peer
caching technologies. Now while installing a
larger feature updates by a standard software
update management routines is a supported option, many organizations are gonna opt to use upgrade task sequences using System Center Configuration Manager or the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit. This option also allows
you to create custom checks prior to installing the feature update and allows you to perform custom tests after the installation is completed. Post-update checks might include temporary suspending services if
needed during the update, driver installation and replacement, application upgrades or taskbar and start menu personalization settings. If you’re already using task sequences to migrate your Windows
7 machines to Windows 10 and are well-versed in those tools, this is really a great place to start and provides the ultimate control. And while you can use
a single task sequence for the entire upgrade,
it’s often quite common for organizations to
use two task sequences. One task sequence for making sure that machines are ready for the upgrade, that silently pre-stages
all the required setup files on target computers, and another task sequence
to do the actual upgrade. This approach ensures that
your user productivity is less impacted. And if you don’t use
upgrade task sequences you can now run custom
actions or apply driver files during feature updates
in the pre-install phase before setup runs its compatibility checks or in the pre-commit phase
before the upgrade is applied. So that was a run through of Windows and Office as a service models and what you can do to stay up to date. Next up on our Deployment Process Wheel, we’ll cover what you can
do to get your users ready for Windows 10 and Office 365 ProPlus with tips and resources for user adoption and communication planning. To learn more don’t forget to visit our Modern Desktop Deployment Center and keep following our Desktop
Deployment Essentials Series here on Microsoft Mechanics. Thanks for watching. (light music) (whooshing)

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