To improve Windows Server I suggest you ...

Windows Updates shouldn't fail constantly or take hours to complete

I have a number of 2016 servers. It seems like 99% of them fail when doing automatic updates. I am able to install them manually by going through sconfig and selecting option 6 but it takes FOREVER. During installation, the CPU or Memory isn't maxed out at 100% so I have no idea what is causing it to take forever. All other previous versions of Windows run and install updates just fine in the same VMware environment.

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    Ross shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

    37 comments

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      • Stephen Kovacsiss commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        We have a number of 2012 R2 servers at AWS and the updates are super fast and since moving to 2016, they take 5 to 10 times longer to complete. It make no sense as to why the update process is so slow. Right now they are all done using the built-in Windows Update functions, although I would like to setup a WSUS for this setup. That is another task that will happen as needed. The updates though, cannot be taking 20-30 (or longer) minutes to complete.

        Karl W-E shows it quite clearly in a recent post. Maybe Server 2019 is better, need to see if it is as good as 2012 R2.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Same massive issues and problems here with Windows Server 2016 (inside virtual machines with 2016 as well as on the hypervisor side with Hyper-V based on 2016)

      • Karl W-E. commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Updating 02-2019 2016 & 2019 Core comparison

        video: https://1drv.ms/v/s!ApTx3d3fhinPgpkriARDNqJrGfygWQ

        Server 2019 LTSC Core
        Search Updates > 6 sec
        Download Updates > 33 sec
        install Updates > 2 min 30 sec
        Restart / Apply Updates + Logon > 45 sec

        Total Patch Time 02-2019 CU > 3 mins 56 sec

        Server 2016 LTSC Core
        Search Updates > 28 sec
        Download / (install*) Updates > 13 mins 52 sec
        install Updates > 6 mins 8 sec
        Restart / Apply Updates + Logon > 2 min 57 sec

        Total Patch Time 02-2019 CU > 23 mins +/- 26 sec

      • Karl W-E. commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I was wrong with my post from 16th Feb.

        Video via Onedrive for evidence Please share video / post until fixed.
        https://1drv.ms/v/s!ApTx3d3fhinPgpkfpt3eIZ6rVJZwaw

        Setting:
        Windows 10 19H1 Hyper-V
        Test: Server Patches 2016 LTSC vs 2019 LTSC GUI.
        "Baremetal" installation

        2 vCore - Host i7700k @ 4,8 GHz
        32 GB RAM
        2x NVMe 970 EVO 1 TB (Storage Spaces, Mirror, Thin Provisioning)

        Server 2019 LTSC GUI
        Search Updates > 11 secs
        Download Updates > 21 secs
        Install Updates > 3 mins 16 secs
        Restart / Apply Updates + Logon > 52 sec
        Total Patch Time 02-2019 CU + .net > 4 mins 40 sec

        Server 2016 LTSC GUI
        Download / (install*) Updates > 22 minutes 10 secs
        install Updates > 7 mins 7 seconds + 20 secs another search
        Restart / Apply Updates + Logon > 14 mins 50 secs

        Total Patch Time 02-2019 CU
        without .net patches available > 44 mins 28 secs

        this translates to storage with no NVME to patch times of several hours as reported in uservoice

        *the progress bar is wrong altogether on W2016 it reports to download but is already installing for minutes as there is no network traffic and tiworker is consuming a whole core

        if you imagine to patch 20-100 servers on VMWare or Hyper-V you can literally feel the CPU pressure and time consumed comparing to Server 2019.

      • Karl W-E. commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        hi everyone, it seems the latest Servicing Stack Update from 02-2019 will finally fix the issue. I will try to test it further or alternatively provide proove as video comparing 2016 vs 2019 GUI + Core update speeds and tweet to Microsoft with reference of two uservoice.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        We’re a small non-profit with about 20 PCs and one physical Windows 2016 server. Updates that used to take an hour or so on a Friday evening with Server 2008R2 now take an entire day or longer with Windows Server 2016. Most recently I tried installing KB4480961 (the January 2019 cumulative update)—it ran for nearly four hours, failed, and then took another hour to roll itself back. Ugh.
        Not sure what our long-term plan is yet, but a Synology NAS is starting to look better and better. Windows Server 2019 is available to us through software assurance but I’m reluctant to move to a server OS that was only released a few months ago.
        Microsoft, please fix!

      • Josh commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        My 3 hour patch window is now a 1-2 day process with our Windows Server 2016 systems. Planning around backup windows is hard enough with the limited amount of time I have.. this is becoming a nightmare and a waste of my time to monitor these systems all weekend.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        This is standard for Microsoft to release one bad operating system in between each viable operating system release. I’ve watch this become their modus operandi since Windows 95. Just go back through every Windows OS and you’ll see that it is a genius system to sell more software.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Updating a Server 2016 server takes FOREVER, unacceptable when you are talking production systems.

      • Alan Schuh commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Chris commented · October 31, 2018 7:29 AM

        "...How is that acceptable?"

        By definition, it is acceptable. The windows community's continued use of Server 20xx, and all other MS products, is proof of acceptance.

        There are are Linux flavors that can be configured as strong, stable, and secure servers, and there are alternatives to MS applications. You (plural) choose to accept your ride on the Whirligig Update ride.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I have to agree with everyone. Mine do not fail (yet) but it does take hours going from WU or WSUS. From WU I am not counting the time it takes to download because frankly these updates are huge but the time to apply gets about 10-15 minutes longer each month. I am up to about 1.5 hours per server.from the time preparing to install hits.

      • Will commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I can only confirm we have the exact same issue as mentioned in the comments below.. (I wonder if Joe Patterson is onto something - has anyone else tried his suggestion - and did it work?)

      • Karl W-E. commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Dear Admins, suffering companions, I've tried to bump up at a very kind and helpful person at Microsoft. I cannot promise anything but I hope it does help this issue gets a checkmark before end of main support for Server 2016 LTSC, after more than a year of reporting.

      • Karl W-E. commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate
      • Felix Leven commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Same problem, physical servers, azure vms, hyper-v/vmware VMs, WSUS/Windows update does not make any difference. Fix this!

      • ianc commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Another voice and another vote. When, for the love of God, will you guys get your collective fingers out and fix this?!!!!

        I'm guessing by the new, and extremely annoying, nag screen (which can't be bypassed in 2016), which now appears every time I log on, that you care about customers updating their software. If that's the case, then why have you taken the speedy update process from 2012 R2 and booted it back to the stone age? No information about the size of downloads, erratic and inaccurate progress bars and glacial reboot times that can't fit in maintenance windows. Hello?

        People have been complaining about it for over a year:

        https://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/250914a1-b013-434a-baa0-639e31a839dd/whats-with-the-really-slow-windows-updates-on-2016?forum=ws2016

        It's now 2018! Wake up! Fix this!

        ianc

      • Joe Patterson commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I have configured my Server 2016 & Windows 10 GPO settings to not allow my Windows 10 & Server 2016 to received updates from computers on the Internet significantly improves update performance and reliability. Remember Windows 10 & Server 2016 have the new update code path to try and download updates from computers on the Internet. Without the new GPO settings 1709+) the OSes will continue to try to use Internet sources for updates even if the local OS GUI has the option disabled. Confirm with Process Monitor, SYSMON & TCPView tools from Sysinternals on the Microsoft TechNet site.

        *NOTE with CAUTION: You may need to add the newer Windows 10 (1709+) .ADMx/l files to your GPO Central store in SYSVOL (or PolicyDefinitions folder on a local OS) to be able to get access to the additional GPO settings specific to Windows Update and Microsoft's new Cloud based updating settings.

      • Charles commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        We have migrate our WSUS from Windows 2008 R2 to Windows 2016 to support the new Windows 2016 Server. All Windows 2008 R2 and Windows 2012 R2 servers that are connected and receives updates from the new WSUS 2016 is vey fast, i mean the installation takes approx. the same time as it was before with the WSUS 2008 R2. But all of our Windows 2016 Servers that are connected and receives updates from the new WSUS 2016 takes many hours to update. The averages of time it takes to update is 2.5 to 3 hours compare to 30-40 minutes for the previous Windows servers versions. This week, we had servers that took 2 days to install the updates...

        Is it normal ?

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