Technology Toolbox: Patching (Part 1/2)

April 18th, 2018 by admin

Remote monitoring teams use a lot of different tools that they have found or built over the years to help them maintain computers and solve problems efficiently. These toolboxes are like the software version of Batman’s utility belt. Using them, technicians are able to make many important changes to a large number of computers in a relatively short amount of time. The most fundamental tools among these toolboxes are related to patching and hardware monitoring. Patching is the easiest and most valuable step you can take in keeping your software healthy.

What is patching?

Sometimes called updates or version upgrades, patching is downloading or installing software improvements for your operating system, applications, programs, virus protection and more. That pop-up that asks you when you’d like to download a software update that you keep ignoring? That’s your computer begging you to patch.  

Why do we patch?

  • The biggest reason that patching is important is that no software is perfect upon release. Every software has mistakes or gaps programmed in that require rectification over time through updates. Without patching, you are using an incomplete product.
  • The vast world of technology is less like a landscape and more like an ocean: always moving, changing, growing, and shrinking. There is software that your programs are or will be interacting with that did not exist when the program was first conceived.
  • Every piece of software is like a fortress. Each has different levels of security, and different levels of desirability from potential hackers. If you don’t keep your guards aware of the newest threats, and equipped with the latest and greatest tools, you will eventually be breached. Patching all programs, operating systems and virus protection solutions prevents a lot of potentially catastrophic security situations. For example, 2017’s WannaCry ransomware attack, which affected thousands and led to billions of dollars in losses, could have been prevented by a quick Windows 7 patch.

How does remote monitoring handle patches?

Patching is one of the primary focuses of remote monitoring, and an integral service that our techs and toolsets provide our customers. Technicians know the deeper functions of your OS and the programs you use, and they can set them up to patch automatically at a time of convenience. Beyond scheduling and running patches, our toolsets monitor computers to keep track of which patches fail to install, and alert us that a computer is falling behind. With the remote monitoring we provide, you are guaranteed to be up to date on all your core patches, or be notified with instructions on what is needed in order to get you up to date. Whether or not you have an interest in remote monitoring, everyone can benefit by knowing about the importance and function of patches. It’s like getting your oil changed and your brakes inspected; one way or another, you need to make sure it’s being done periodically on your machine, or you’ll regret it.   Next week we will get into the second fundamental tool of remote monitoring: hardware and driver monitoring. Feel free to message us with any questions or comments! We love to hear from you!  

Posted in: Technology, Teams, Toolsets