Windows Patch management is an important and yet monotonous task for system admins as they have to constantly stay on top of updates and patches, download, and install them.
Microsoft eases this process to some extent with its Windows Server Update Services (WSUS).
Earlier known as Software Update Services, this is a network service that helps administrators to manage the distribution of updates released by Microsoft for a corporate environment.
The service automatically identifies updates when they are released and distributes them to the entire corporate network.
But just like any software, there is always a chance for WSUS to malfunction or Error out, and when this happens, your network becomes vulnerable.
Here’s our list of the top WSUS Client Diagnostic tools:
- SolarWinds Diagnostic Tool for WSUS Agent – FREE TOOL A free system troubleshooter that tests connections between a WSUS server and client. Installs on Windows Server.
- ManageEngine Patch Connect Plus – FREE TRIAL A patch manager for devices running Windows, Linux, and macOS. Available for Windows Server or as a cloud service.
- Syxsense Manage – FREE TRIAL A replacement for WSUS that can monitor the patch statuses of a fleet of endpoints. This is a cloud-based service.
- NinjaOne – FREE TRIAL A system management bundle designed for remote system management that includes patch rollout systems. This is a cloud-based service.
- ManageEngine Patch Manager Plus A patch manager for Windows, Linux, and macOS devices, suitable for large organizations. Available for Windows Server or as a cloud service.
- ADF Design WSUS tool for SpiceWorks A nice, free testing tool for WSUS that is particularly useful for those who clone desktop setups. Runs on Windows Server.
- BatchPatch A coordinator that interfaces to several different patching systems, including WSUS, creating one central console for all patching activities. Installs on Windows.
In general, hackers find exploits to hack into your network and these patches race to close these vulnerabilities. When your WSUS stops working, you are unaware of it, and this opens the possibilities for an attack.
But rest assured, there is a solution! To avoid this situation, there are some valuable tools that will monitor WSUS to ensure that it is up and running at all times so you aren’t left with any ugly surprises.
Here’s the Best WSUS Client Diagnostic Software & Tools:
Let’s take a detailed look into each of these tools and software packages and see what each has to offer!
SolarWinds Diagnostic Tool for WSUS Agent is used to test WSUS connections and to ensure that they are up and running at all times.
- Validates the important configuration values
- Tests connections to WSUS resources
- Identifies the causes of failure
- Stays on top of Windows Update Agent errors
- Suggests appropriate solutions to repair errors.
- Sends detailed reports
- Sends notifications of failed updates
- Performs centralized and automated software installations
Pricing: It is 100% FREE for LIFE!
Download: Click here to download this free tool.
ManageEngine Patch Connect Plus has a plethora of features that give you the flexibility and power to really dive deep into your network infrastructure and troubleshoot as needed.
Some features of the Patch Connect Plus include the following:
- Client & Server Troubleshooting tasks
- System management tasks within your SCCM console
- Create & Deploy Scripts within your environment
- Optimize Basic SCCM Tasks & Operations
- and much more!
See a full list of the capabilities of this tool from the link below!
Information: More info and Documentation!
Syxsense Manage is a substitute for WSUS. This cloud-based platform manages fleets of endpoints running Windows, Linux, and macOS. This service includes a patch manager for operating systems and software packages.
- Manages servers and desktops running Windows, Linux, and macOS plus IoT devices.
- Automatically discovers devices and scans them for software, creating a software inventory.
- Polls vendor feeds for available patches.
- Stores patch installers in the cloud.
- Package includes 50GB of cloud storage space.
- Applies patches automatically during user-defined maintenance windows.
- Reports for PCI DSS, HIPAA, and SOX conformance.
Pricing: The price for Syxsense Manage starts at $600 per year to manage 10 devices.
Download: You can get a 14-day free trial of Syxsense Manage.
NinjaOne – formerly NinjaRMM – is a package of tools that enables a support technician to manage a remote system. This bundle includes all of the facilities that support operatives need and is mainly aimed at managed service providers (MSPs). However, it would also prove useful for the central IT department of multi-site corporations. This bundle of services includes a patch management system and diagnostic tools to ensure constant contact with endpoints and their monitoring agents.
- Checks the connections to all endpoints
- Generates a software endpoint for each device, which is constantly updated
- Gathers all patches available from vendor websites
- Schedules patches for out-of-hours rollout
- Checks on patch termination statuses
- Alerts on communication problems or patch failure
- Manages WSUS and SCCM activity
Price: Contact NinjaOne for a quote.
Download: Access a 14-day free trial.
5. ManageEngine Patch Manager Plus
ManageEngine Patch Manager Plus is a comprehensive tool that handles all aspects of patch management including the monitoring of the WSUS service.
- Automates all phases of patch management
- Presents insightful reports
- Ensures 100% patch compliance status across all systems.
- Creates test groups for deployment on production environments.
- Manages and deploys patches to more than 250 third-party applications.
- Offers cross-platform support.
Pricing: Contact the sales team for a custom quote.
Download: Click here to download a trial version.
6. ADF Design WSUS tool for Spiceworks
ADF Design’s WSUS tool is a handy one for WSUS administrators who want to debug or manage their WSUS.
- All functions can be done through the command-line interface and Regedit
- Makes it possible to work on machines with restricted accounts and a strict GPO
- Ideal for anyone who wants to debug and manage WSUS
- Source code is available and can be modified to meet your preferences
Pricing: It is FREE.
Download: Click here to download.
BatchPatch is a Windows update tool that comes loaded with many useful features.
Features: Some of the salient features of BatchPatch are:
- Installs Windows updates remotely across your entire network.
- Saves a lot of time by patching and rebooting computers simultaneously.
- Executes custom scripts on remote hosts
- Monitors status in real-time
- Retrieves Windows update history information at any time.
- No remote agent installation is needed.
- Terminates remote processes and retrieves logs from remote hosts.
Pricing: Cost depends on the number of users and the number of years of support.
Contact the sales team for more than 15 years.
Download: Click here to download a trial version.
Conclusion about these Tools
To conclude, WSUS is a service from Microsoft that handles patch management for all Windows products. Since this WSUS service can stop working or encounter problems, it is important to have diagnostic tools that monitor this service to ensure that your network is protected at all times.
The above-mentioned tools are some of the best diagnostic tools for WSUS as they come with many useful features.