With Windows 10 we should think of Windows as Windows as a service a new way to build, deploy and service Windows. This means that maintenance is ongoing and iterative. To make this possible we have to have a few things in place. We have to have resources that can test and deploy the new version which are release every 6 months. We have to create deployment rings in our organization, representing machines with different usage, geographic location and user rolls. In some cases you can create rings on different criteria like early adopters to users how don’t like changes. The first ring could be formed by early adopters and technical fans that make a positive buzz in the organization. When you found good criteria for your rings you have to decide how many machines should be in each of them. Remember that the rings should be of different size starting with a small pilot ring and the gradually enlarge each ring to the final one.
When a new version is released you have to create a platform in upKeeper for distribution to new machines (see separate documentation). To be able to upgrade your existing Windows 10 machines you can choose different paths. One way is to make the new version available in Microsoft WSUS and configure it to use rings (see Microsoft documentation). Another way is to activate upKeeper WSUS integration and distribute the update thru upKeeper (upKeeper 4.2 or later). To activate upKeeper WSUS integration you have to install upKeeper WSUS service on the Microsoft WSUS server and then configure the integration (see installation documentation). When WSUS integration is configured you choose the update in you are interested in and start deploy it to your rings with the upKeeper Manager interface.
Testing should start as soon as a new version of Windows 10 is released and every update should be implemented. Tests should be done on bare metal and upgraded machines and include application tests as well. Testing applications on the new Windows version should be done on all standard applications and versions in the organization with special focus on business critical applications. When the release has reached a stable level which until now has been after 6 month you can start roll out in to your organization using your rings. Between each deployment ring there should be some planed time where you collect user feedback tweak your next deployment.
Checklist for testing after installation or upgrade
- Applications – start, create information, save information, close application and restart application to verify information. For advanced or business critical applications use separate testing protocol.
- User information – is user data accessible
- Standard browser – is stand browser correct
- Favourites – is user favourites accessible
- Plugin – is plugins installed and functional
- Printers – are correct printers installed and functional
- External devices – are external devices installed and functional