It is often the case that companies need to test updates and service packs before they are released and installed on their computer network. This usually takes some time and it is imperative during that period that the service packs or updates are not installed automatically via Windows Update.
Microsoft has just released a tool to block the deployment of the Windows 7 Service Pack 1 and the Windows Server 2008 R2 Service Pack 1 via Windows Update. The toolkit offers three different components to block the automatic deployment of the service pack via Windows Update. It has to be noted at this point that the blocker tool does not block the installation if it is initiate by the user directly, either by a direct download or from CD or DVD.
The blocker tool is available as
A Microsoft-signed executable
The executable creates a registry key on the computer on which it is run that blocks or unblocks (depending on the command-line option used) the delivery of a Service Pack to that computer through Windows Update. The key used is HKLM\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WindowsUpdate.
When the ‘/B’ command line option is used, the key value name ‘DoNotAllowSP’ is created and its value set to 1. This value blocks delivery of a Service Pack to the computer through Automatic Update or Windows Update.
When the ‘/U’ command line option is used, the previously created registry value that temporarily blocked the delivery of a Service Pack to the computer through Automatic Update or Windows Update is removed. If the value does not exist on the computer on which it is run, no action is taken.
The script does the same thing as the executable, but allows you to specify the remote machine name on which to block or unblock delivery of Service Packs.
An ADM template
The ADM template allows administrators to import group policy settings to block or unblock delivery of Service Packs into their Group Policy environment. Administrators can then use Group Policy to centrally execute the action across systems in their environment.
Companies and organizations can use either of the three to block the installation of the service pack 1 for Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2 once it is released by Microsoft. The deployment is blocked for a period of 12 months after the official release of the service pack. (download, via Windows Service Pack Blocker Tool Kit Download Available)
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.