Despite advances, patching is core to IT operations. Mature patch management enables automation and coordination across change and vulnerability management. This framework provides I&O technical professionals a structured approach to maturing and modernizing patch management.
The Gartner Approach
The Guidance Framework
- Define Scope and Prioritization Framework
- Define Roles and Responsibilities
- Identify Assets and Associated Tools
- Establish Patching SLAs and Targets
- Use the Right Tools to Automate Patch Deployment
- Leverage CI/CD to Automate Patching of Immutable Systems
- Build Patch Repositories
- Step 1 — Assess
- Capture Patch Releases
- Prioritize the Patch Backlog
- Step 2 — Plan
- Develop a Test Plan
- Develop a Deployment Plan
- Build a Patch Plan Using Patch Capacity
- Step 3 — Test
- Step 4 — Deploy
- Identify Target Systems
- Prepare Systems for Patching
- Deploy Patches
- Step 5 — Report
- Establish Reports Around SLAs and KPIs
- Report on Opportunities to Improve Patch Management
Risks and Pitfalls
- Failure to Set Realistic Scope and Coverage
- Failing to Invest Sufficient Resources
- Scoping Patch Coverage to Automation
- Related Guidance
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