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What is a MSWU update or hotfix…both?

Created: 05 Sep 2012 | 10 comments

Trying to get some additional information on what a MSWU is exactly.  Is it an update (different than a security update) or hotfix?

What does MSWU mean?                             

Is there a location\list to review what each MSWU is?  Microsoft makes no reference to MSWU.

How do others manage MSWU, do you stage and deploy them to all applicable computers or do you only deploy when a specific issue is discovered?

Thanks for information to any of these questions.

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JSpur's picture

Microsoft Windows Update - MSWU

These are not security updates or service packs. It's everything else.

shafiq1's picture

is that the Microsoft definition of MSWU, patches that are not either security updates or service packs? I need to make sure I am categorizing/prioritizing these correctly.

Roman Vassiljev's picture

Hi shafiq1,

MSWU contains Microsoft updates that are not included to official Microsoft bulletins. These updates are provided as separate KBs by Microsoft


Rick D's picture

Follow up question, example of my issues. I’ve found 5 high priority Microsoft updates using Windows Update for a specific computer.  I’ve already stage and deployed all MSxx-00x updates to all servers.  I’ve noted the 5 KB articles from Windows Update…. So how do I find them in Patch Management?  If I type in these KBs into the “Bulletins and Updates” search it returns no result? How am I supposed to know what MSWU equate to each KB? How am I supposed to stage and deploy if I cannot find them?  Hopefully I’m missing something here!






Dmitri_Gornev's picture

Hi Rick D,

unfortunately some updates don't have KB number in their description.

There is a work around to find them: type or paste KB number (like KB2633952) to search box in top right corner of NS Console windows (next to Symantec logo) and click magnifying glass icon - this will result in several filenames found - click one of them to open Resource Manager for given item.

In Resource Manager window use menu item "Summaries" -> "Software Update Details" - this will open page with "Parent Software Bulletin" information - "MSWU-575" in our case.

Then you can use found software bulletin informaiton in "Bulletins and Updates" report to stage, distribute, etc.

Dmitri_Gornev's picture

Let me correct myself - actually there is more straightforward way to get this information: navigate to Actions > Software > Patch Remediation Center and select 'All Software Updates' view. Search updates by KB number and you will also see bulletin name for each found update.

Rick D's picture

Hi Dmitri,

Interesting result you posted, when I attempt to do the exact same search I get "No Results".  Currently under the MetaData Import Task I have everything checked for Microsoft.  Also "disable all superseded software updates" NOT checked.  Any ideas?


Dmitri_Gornev's picture

Hi Rick D,

what Patch Management solution version do you have? MSWU bulletins (and other non-security updates) are available only in versions starting from 7.1 SP1.

Rick D's picture

Using 7.1 SP2 version 7.1.7580.  I do see MSWU entries, if I do a search for the update you just showed above by MSWU it will appear in my search... but it will not when using the KB number.

Rick D's picture


I see part of my problem... from the "Show" drop down I choose "All Software Bulletins", not "All Software Updates"... When I choose Software Updates I can search by KB as you demonstrated. 

Still it seems difficult to differentiate between the hotfixes which are mixed with the non-security updates.  Our IT department has the perception that Patch Management is not functionally correctly when technicians still see updates appear as needed using Windows Update service. 

I’m looking for a way to easily separate the High Priority non-security updates vs the hotfixes which show as applicable using the IT Analytics Patch Management Cube (another method I found to view vulnerabilities and the update that matches).  Hot fixes will not show using the Windows Update service as they recommend only if needed, and have not been as thoroughly tested.