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Microsoft

Today, I'm excited to announce the private preview of Update Staging Lab, a service that allows independent software vendors (ISVs) to accelerate application validation against pre-release builds of Windows security updates.

This service enables highly engaged collaboration between ISV partners and Microsoft enabling joint deployment, validation, and remediation. In addition to the strong application compatibility posture of Windows 10 (customer data from Desktop App Assure has shown a 99.8% success rate), we recognize that there is opportunity with our ISV ecosystem to improve “day one” support for your critical applications after installing a Windows update. That's why we are creating Update Staging Lab—help ISVs quickly validate their applications against pre-releases Windows updates and enable you to deploy the latest updates worry free.

It goes without saying: we want to ensure that you always have the proper tools to empower your business for success. With that understanding, we've listened to you—our ISVs and our enterprise customers—and understand the challenges you face with your current application validation processes. In addition, we've heard feedback that you'd like ISVs and Microsoft to engage more closely to ensure that new monthly security updates work with your applications.

Update Staging Lab offers numerous advantages to enterprises and ISV partners:

  • Access to monthly Windows security updates prior to public release
  • Faster rollout of security updates to protect enterprise devices
  • Lowered update validation costs by simplifying deployment and configuration of validation environments
  • World-class intelligence from Microsoft about your apps (e.g. performance data, API impact analysis, etc.)
  • Microsoft expertise in migrating test content to Azure.

In short, this new service will help ISVs make validation efforts simpler and more efficient. Enterprise customers will benefit from ISV and Microsoft testing together in a joint, collaborative environment and gain more confidence that their applications will work as expected.

“Fujisoft welcomes sincerely the Update Staging Lab on this occasion, and by combining our unique technical skills with our strong Microsoft partnership, we intend to use it to provide our customers with reassurance to use the latest versions of Windows 10.”

-Mari Morimoto, Chief Operating Officer, MS Business Department, Fujisoft

How Update Staging Lab works

Microsoft will maintain a Windows 10 environment in Azure and keep it up to date with the latest security updates. ISVs enrolled in the service will provide automated test suites to Microsoft. Microsoft will then schedule a test pass every time a new build of a pre-release security update becomes available in our build share. This will infuse ease and simplicity into the process of deploying updates and configuring validation environments.

When Update Staging Lab first rolls out as a private preview on November 4, 2019, the service will support Windows monthly security updates[i]. Starting November 4th, ISVs enrolled in the private preview will be able to upload their test collateral into the Update Staging Lab service and will start receiving application intelligence. They will be able to access their own test results directly through the Azure Portal Update Staging Lab dashboard through an experience similar to that shown below:

usl-test-summary.jpg

Since data will be available to ISVs shortly after being enrolled in the service, enterprises will be able to work with those ISV partners to get validation insights on the latest Windows security updates before those updates are released. 

Sign up or nominate your ISV today

If you are an ISV who is interested in onboarding your applications onto Update Staging Lab, please complete the private preview sign-up form or bookmark https://aka.ms/JoinUSL to complete the form when it is convenient for you. If you are an IT professional whose organization is interested in nominating an ISV for participation in the Update Staging Lab service, please complete the same form to nominate your ISV partner. If we select them for private preview participation, we will work directly with the ISV to onboard them onto Update Staging Lab.

signup.png

If you will be attending Microsoft Ignite 2019, we will be hosting a session on Tuesday, November 5th, 2019 from 1:50pm to 2:10pm EST to walk through the service further, as well as staffing a booth to help answer your questions. You can attend the session, THR3025: Accelerate app validation against new Windows builds, live or watch it via live stream or on demand (48 hours later) by being a member of the Tech Community. If you're onsite and have any additional questions, please come visit the Windows 10 booth in the West Hall or contact us at uslpreview@microsoft.com.

We are committed to providing the best application validation experience possible, to help you and your customers stay productive and secure. We look forward to hearing your feedback about our service and to bringing you future updates.

[i] We plan to add support in Update Staging Lab for semi-annual Windows feature updates; however, there is not currently a timeline for this capability.