Microsoft Provides 35-Day Window For Postponing ‘Impactful” Azure Host Updates

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Customers have been given the ability to postpone these updates to Azure Virtual Machines for up to 35 days.

You can’t put it off forever but the grace-period is designed as a maintenance control that eases the fears customers with sensitive workloads have when it comes to the Platform Maintenance Program from Microsoft.

Microsoft explains, “Almost all updates have zero impact on your Azure virtual machines (VMs)” except some are affected and, they go on to say that, where a reboot is not required after the update, “the VM is briefly paused while the host is updated, or it’s live migrated to an already updated host.”

Microsoft insists that reboots are incredibly rare but says they do notify customers of planned maintenance, and “Azure also provides a time window in which you can start the maintenance yourself, at a time that works for you.”

Azure also insists that the updates not requiring a reboot will not have any effect on overall customer experience but go on to say that, “certain very sensitive workloads may require full control of all maintenance activities”  – these are the customers Microsoft is aiming their new feature at.

Updates may be postponed by adding custom maintenance configurations to resources, letting the Azure update know to skip any update classed as “non-zero-impact.” It is then down to the customer to initiate the updates but, if it isn’t done within the 35 days, Azure will go ahead and apply all pending updates automatically.

By the same token, updates related to “high-severity” security will not be pushed back either, although this is also said to be a “rare occurrence that would only be used in extreme cases, such as a last resort to protect you from critical security issues.”

In other news related to Azure, Microsoft has pushed its Teams Collaboration Platform to the Linux OS, offering two flavors – .rpm and .deb. This is the first time a Microsoft 365 app has been made available on Linux and will provide support for all the core capabilities in Teams.

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