PatchMaster is designed to automate the creation and delivery of Microsoft Patches to an SCCM Hierarchy and is available as freeware and is an alternative to the powerful SCCM ADR feature.

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  • Patch rules (include/exclude)
    2 Posts | Last post January 03, 2019
    • When creating rules is there a reason the includes column is required? if i set items to exclusion then i would expect everything minus the exclusion would be added. the log shows an error for a null/empty column. if i add something to the includes section, the rule then works. 
    • Hi Kevin,
      Firstly, thanks for using the tool!
      It shouldn't be required. It can be empty which means include everything.
      I'm not sure how it became a required field for you, probably a glitch. I'd have to pop open the source code and have a look to see if I can fix it for the 1.6 release.
      By the way, these rules are written to the registry, HKLM\Software\SMSMarshall\PatchMaster|PatchRules, I would say visit and clean up the messed up rule, rules are delimited by a | (pipe) from memory.
      Hope that helps,
  • Unhandled Exception on Check for Patches
    2 Posts | Last post October 05, 2018
    • Hi Robert,
      I´m getting a Unhandled Exception checking for Patches.
      System.FormatException: Input string was not in a correct format.
         at System.Number.StringToNumber(String str, NumberStyles options, NumberBuffer& number, NumberFormatInfo info, Boolean parseDecimal)
         at System.Number.ParseInt32(String s, NumberStyles style, NumberFormatInfo info)
         at System.Convert.ToInt32(String value)
         at PatchMaster.Form1.bw_checkforPatches_ProgressChanged(Object sender, ProgressChangedEventArgs e)
         at System.ComponentModel.BackgroundWorker.OnProgressChanged(ProgressChangedEventArgs e)
      I can continue without Issues however. From the Error Message, the name of an Update is in wrong format?
      The affected Update 
      Name is 144 letters long
      included special chars: :,.-()
      Maybe one of those is causing the failure?
    • This I am very interested in. And the error data is immediately useful to me thanks.
      The tool runs in a linear fashion through the rules you've created, so it will be easy for me to track down what product\classification was being processed when this error occurred. By chance the next time it happens, can you copy\paste the Logs tab's contents into an email to me? robert @ smsmarshall dott com
      From your error paste, I can see I'm converting a string to an integer and it is failing in module bw_checkforPatches_ProgressChanged, due to ArticleID being blank.
      dgv_availablePatches.Rows.Add(passedList[0], >>>>>> Convert.ToInt32(passedList[1]) <<<<< , passedList[2], passedList[3], passedList[4], passedList[5], Convert.ToDateTime(passedList[6]), Convert.ToDateTime(passedList[7]));
      The data in the available patches tab is presentation only, it isn't consumed back into the tool when a build takes place, so ignoring the error and proceeding causes no data-loss just a missing row in the Available Patches datagrid, it'll still be processed by the engine which doesn't care if a patch has an article ID or not.
      I've just created V1.6 project, changed the code for module bw_checkforPatches_ProgressChanged so that this doesn't happen again. No ETA on 1.6 release.
      Thanks for the feedback!
  • Waterfall Product Categories
    2 Posts | Last post October 05, 2018
    • Hi Robert,
      While Testing and Implementing, i´ve seen an Issue with how Products are selected.
      Would it be possible to add the same "Waterfall" Selection of Products as in the Software Update Point Settings?
      So if i select "Office" as Product Category, PatchMaster will include all Office VErsion all the way from "Office 2002/XP, Office 2003 ,Office 2007" etc.
    • I want the rule system to be agile, as much or as little as you want to deploy that has been defined by the SUP selections. I figure once you've set your rules up you won't touch them again, so the payback is minimal for the effort to introduce this kind of feature :-(
      Appreciate the feedback, you get a Gold Star for using and feeding back, nice!
  • 1.5 Design
    4 Posts | Last post August 10, 2018
    • Hi Robert,
      I´ve just upgraded to 1.5.
      Thanks for fixing the Bugs i already mentioned. 
      However, i again got a few remarks:
      Black background - is this on purpose? Just big change from 1.4
      Configure Tab - Distribution Points: Only the currently selected is visible, rest is blank
      Available Patches Tab - "Check for Patches": Reverts from Full Screen to default Window Size.
      Looking forward to this and running Patch Tuesday next week to further test.
    • Addition:
    • Log: Retrieved 10 Distribution Points
      However, there are only 4 Distribution Points.
      There are 6 DP Groups, however.
    • I teetered on including DP Groups but other things took up the time, you'll see 10 in your case 6 + 4 as I'm still bringing them in but I am filtering out DP Groups. I'll look at the code and see what's up with DP handling in the UI, if you need to add more and cannot check out the registry key PatchDistributionPoints.
      Soaked up a lot of bugs, I did a lot to the UI including making it black, does it render ok for you? :-)
      The notification behaviour is causing it to jump back to normal mode, i'll make that work nicely on the next release, only put it in to make the process notify the user works been done, v1 implementation heh.
      Patch Tuesday, cool let me know how it goes, and a big thanks for the feedback, glad you liked the changes, tools been heavily optimised and feature-loaded from 1.4 to 1.5, aside from maybe a few tweaks it should last until the patching scene gets shaken up if it does, and PM is no longer needed.
  • Not seeing new patches
    3 Posts | Last post August 06, 2018
    • Trying out PM v1.4 in my lab. 
      MS have released a new patch in June for Win10 1803 to fix the Service Stack. (4338853)
      Cannot seem to get PM to show me the patch is available. 
      Am almost certain it is user error, any pointers?
    • I see it showing up here, it is a Critical Update, a patch for each OS.
      Win10-Security-Critical	4338853	2018-06 Update for Windows 10 Version 1803 for x64-based Systems (KB4338853)	Windows 10	Critical Updates	x64	27/06/2018 00:12:54	27/06/2018 00:12:54
      Are you using the Exclude\Include rules, if so, is that filtering this out?
      Has it already been downloaded and deployed? If so it will not show in PM.
      You can copy\paste the patch list from PM into notepad for easier searching ... 
    • Re-released patches won't show as they are deployed already.
      I've just released V1.5, I am considering how to handle re-released patches in the next version.
      For now go find the updates that have been re-released in the CM console, right click and remove them from the SUG's, re-run PM and they will appear for deployment after PM has downloaded the replaced by MS files.
      If you use a search on All Software Updates for a date range that includes when the patches were re-released, you can bulk select any that MS has re-released and handle them as above so that PM can deploy them afresh. HTH.
  • Naming bar issues
    3 Posts | Last post April 20, 2018
    • Hi Rob, excellent work!
      First time trying out PatchMaster and running into a few minor cosmetical issues with the naming bar.
      Your guide says to right-drag items around. I assume you mean to right click and drag items, however that just removes them from the bar in my experience. Left-dragging (to steal your naming convention ;) ) does do the trick.
      I can't seem to move the Out of Cycle box. Every other item can be moved. Following your naming suggestion to have OOC at the far right of the naming items, I had to drag all other items in the right order to the left of OOC.
    • Thanks! 
      Silly me, its a left drag!
      And that OOC is a pest lol, I will have a look see why it won't move around like the others, and yes you have to drag everything else around to shunt it off to the right as you discovered. 
      Thanks so much for the feedback, invaluable. 
    • Guide on my blog updated to reflect the left dragging and the naughty OOC button. Thanks again.
  • Unable to install the MSI
    2 Posts | Last post March 14, 2018
    • Unknown Publisher
      Windows Defender SmartScreen prevented an unrecognized app from starting. Running this app might put your PC at risk.
    • Yeah, right click and unblock.
      It's a classic issue of expensive signing certificates not being used by me.
      It'd cost a lot of money to buy them, and they only last a few years before up for renewal. 
      I'm not a full on software developer, I produce tools in limited numbers on the odd occasion, their source is me, so think of me being signing cert :-)
      By the way, ORCA lets you examine the MSI, and the actual EXE can be put through a debugger, source will be available on GITHUB once I've cleaned it up and uploaded it.