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Microsoft

In supporting customers in the field, we receive many questions about Office 365 ProPlus update process. The objective of this blog is to provide context around end user behavior during update scenario and clarify when and how Office updates are applied. 

 

Office ProPlus was designed to be a cloud first product…. What does that mean?  It means that by default, Microsoft recommends you update Office 365 ProPlus directly from Microsoft Content Delivery Network (CDN).  While IT Pros are always in control,  Office 365 ProPlus is automatically kept up-to-date via evergreen model.  IT Pros can offload servicing aspect of Office 365 ProPlus to Microsoft so they can focus on other duties removing repetitive tasks.  At present, while we lead with CDN as our recommendation, the vast majority of Enterprise customers I work with prefer to manage updates from System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) for a variety of reasons. (too many to list here such as network, governing process or political etc.)

Let’s compare and contrast both scenarios below to see which approach is best to address your business requirements.  Regardless, the goal is to ensure Office 365 ProPlus is serviced every month to address security and deliver features based on cadence suitable for our customers.

 

Quick refresher of Office ProPlus channel cadence -Simplified 

 

Current Channel: Provide users with the newest features of Office as soon as they're available.  This could be three or four builds per Month. (Updates should be delivered by CDN)

Monthly Enterprise Channel: Provide your users with new Office features only once a month and on a predictable schedule. (Updates can be delivered by CDN or ConfigMgr)

Semi-Annual Enterprise Channel (Preview): Provide pilot users and application compatibility testers the opportunity to test the next Semi-Annual Channel.  Features\fixes delivered every six months, in March and September

Semi-Annual Enterprise Channel: Provide users with new features of Office only a few times a year. Features\fixes delivered every six months, in January and July (Updates can be delivered by CDN or ConfigMgr)

 

(Official Link is here Overview of update channels)

 

Note about PREVIEW feature using Delivery Optimization for Office 365 ProPlus install\updatesNote about PREVIEW feature using Delivery Optimization for Office 365 ProPlus install\updates

 

The point of the channels is to define the timing when those cumulative builds include features and fixes in addition to security. If you would like more information about channel management please see my other posting for more information called How to manage Office 365 ProPlus Channels for IT Pros

 

*This blog will focus primarily on update process.  Deployment of Office 365 ProPlus is out of scope and will assume Office 365 ProPlus is already installed on the machine.

 

Update from CDN

Prerequisites

  • Automatic Updates is by default Enabled (equivalent GPO is “Enabled Automatic Updates”). If disabled, Office 365 ProPlus will never update.

Benefits

  • Admins don’t have to spend time developing processes to duplicate CDN content on-premises.
  • Admins don’t have to build processes to target software updates to collections. Each machine will pull updates on it’s own.
  • Aligns with “Modern Desktop” motion where machines are increasingly managed by Mobile device management (MDM) rather than on-premises solutions without requirement for any infrastructure.
  • CDN supports a variety of advanced policies to control updates at granular level such as “delay downloading and installing updates for Office”, “prioritize BITS”, “Target Version”, “Update Channel”, “Update Deadline”. IT Pros can control updates effectively without the need for on-premises software.
  • Leverages inbox task scheduler \Microsoft\Office\Office Automatic Updates 2.0 to perform updates based on trigger mechanism (Weekly, At log on, On idle)

Note: On idle is very interesting trigger condition in that it can check for criteria such as user absence and lack of resource consumption to determine opportunistic time to retry updates (no reboots required when Office applications are closed).

 

Reference Links for next section: Update history for Office 365 ProPlus (listed by date) and Download sizes for updates to Office 365 ProPlus

 

User Experience when updating from CDN

Let’s imagine Office 365 ProPlus has June 2019 build installed which is Version 1808 (Build 10730.20348).  “Patch Tuesday” rolls around and on July 9th 2019 July build is released which is Version 1902 (Build 11328.20368).  Based on the trigger assigned the scheduled task “Office Automatic Updates 2.0” will detect a newer build applicable.  Upon initial release to CDN, a new build is temporary throttled until signals are received ensuring highest quality release have been verified.  As a result, IT Pros may observe updates may not occur on Day 0 to all machines but rather over a period of days.  Alternatively, IT Pros can intervene and enable policy “delay downloading and installing updates for Office” and simply define installing update based on number of days.   This mirrors servicing plans feature in SCCM for delivering Windows Feature Updates and makes it easy to build rings.

 

Since the build installed is most recent version we can leverage a feature called binary delta compression to help reduce the size of the files further.  Therefore, keeping Office ProPlus up-to-date is friendlier on network.  Office will download deltas and will stage in C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Updates\Download.  After download Office Automatic Updates 2.0 will attempt to update Office 365 ProPlus.  If no Office applications are open, it will update.  If Office applications were open at the time of update request a series of notifications will occur of period of days. (Officially documented here)

 

Specifically, If, after four days, the updates still aren't applied, a message appears in the notification area in Windows, telling the user that updates are available.

Updatesareavail.png

If, after six days, the updates still aren't applied, a message appears in any newly opened Office document, reminding the user that updates are available.  We refer to this as the “BusBar” which allows user to drive change when convenient. 

bizbar.png

Clicking “Update now” when Office applications are open will result in sample dialogue below.  Clicking continue will save work, update and reopen applications.

saveyourwork.png

The Office backstage also offers a “Update now” selection driven by the user which will check for updates and download build resulting in same prompt above.

backstage.png

download.png

IT Pros can also configure policy “Update Deadline” to set a deadline by when updates for Office must be applied.  

 

Additional reminders will appear leading up to deadline notifying user update is mandatory.  This message appears every two hours. It'll also be shown 60 minutes, 30 minutes, 15 minutes, and 5 minutes before the deadline.

UpdatesReadToApplywithDead.png

If the deadline arrives and the updates still aren't applied, users see a dialog box that warns them that they have 15 minutes before the updates are applied.

OfficeUpdatesRequired.png

 

User Experience when updating from SCCM

 

Prerequisites

  • SCCM Current Branch with Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) 4.0, you can't use WSUS by itself to deploy these updates. You need to use WSUS in conjunction with Configuration Manager
  • The hierarchy's top level WSUS server and the top level Configuration Manager site server must have access to the following URLs: *.microsoft.com, *.msocdn.com, *.office.com, *.office.net, *.onmicrosoft.com, officecdn.microsoft.com, officecdn.microsoft.com.edgesuite.net.
  • Office 365 Client product must be selected from products tab under Software Update Point Component Properties and synchronize software updates after change. Once complete, you should see Office 365 Client Updates populate the Office 365 Updates node under Office 365 Client Management within Software Library tab in SCCM Console.
  • Office 365 Client Management must be enabled on the client. This can be configured in multiple ways such as adding OfficeMgmtCOM="TRUE" in configuration.xml during installation, enable domain policy “Office 365 Client Management” and finally by toggling “Enable management of the Office 365 Client Agent” to Yes from within SCCM Client settings under Software Updates.  You can verify by launching dcomcnfg.exe on the client computer and confirming OfficeC2RCom application is registered.  Only one is required, where policy overrides and take priority over all other methods.  The purpose of the COM application is to allow Office 365 ProPlus to interop with SCCM to pull updates from distribution points rather than CDN

Example of running dcomcnfg.exeExample of running dcomcnfg.exe

Note about PREVIEW feature using Delivery Optimization for Office 365 ProPlus install\updatesNote about PREVIEW feature using Delivery Optimization for Office 365 ProPlus install\updates

Overwhelming majority of enterprise customers use SCCM to deliver Office 365 Client updates for compliance and distribute content from Distribution Points.  Microsoft is always working hard to provide customers additional options including the new feature Delivery Optimization and Office 365 ProPlus which is now in (Preview).  Please read article for full details but one-liner is customers will be able to install AND update Office 365 ProPlus sourcing content from peers without infrastructure requirements which we're super excited about. (no more "thick packages" or distributing loads of content to support a simple language pack).  If you enabled OfficeMgmtCom for SCCM integration, this action must be reversed in order to use Delivery Optimization (DO). The Microsoft Office Click-to-Run Service is responsible for registering and unregistering OfficeC2RCom (OfficeMgmtCOM) application during service startup.  Changing domain policy or SCCM client settings for Office 365 Client Management from ‘Enabled’ to ‘Not configured’ is not enough.  Domain Policy or SCCM Client settings require explicit ‘Disable’ selection for OfficeC2RCom to be successfully deregistered and restore default configuration. Further, any custom update path configuration must also be removed.

 

Benefits

  • Office 365 ProPlus updates can easily be included in the same software deployment as monthly Windows patch process. As a result, all existing business processes and change control can be aligned in the same manner as legacy MSI Office products.
  • Clients will only pull down what's needed to update themselves from Distribution Point.
  • SCCM Administrators can download cumulative build one time from the internet and than deploy to all distribution points so clients pull updates from intranet sources.
  • Administrators can make deployment Available (optional where user is notified update)
  • Administrators can make deployment Available for a period of time prior to Installation Deadline. In this scenario, Office 365 Client using OfficeMgmtCOM will pull deltas from distribution point prior to Installation Deadline and give user a chance to “Update now” via BizBar discussed above at a time which is convenient for them.  This is especially important in a ever mobile world where machines are mobile and not powered on all the time.  Further, IT Pros can get some early production validation as some subset of their population will update prior to Installation Deadline giving them advanced notification of any problems prior to broad deployment.
  • Administrators can make deployment Available time and Installation Deadline the same time. SCCM will ensure update is downloaded and installed at Deadline. (additional details on user experience below)
  • Administrators can enable SCCM features such as Peer Cache so clients can share content among themselves further reducing network WAN traffic. (Peer cache for Configuration Manager clients)

 

User Experience when updating from SCCM

Frequency of toast notifications from SCCM are configurable within "Client Settings" under "Computer Agent". This configuration is applicable to all software deployments not just Office 365 ClientFrequency of toast notifications from SCCM are configurable within "Client Settings" under "Computer Agent". This configuration is applicable to all software deployments not just Office 365 Client

Can be found within SCCM console under client settingsCan be found within SCCM console under client settings

SCCMSoftwareChangesRequired.png

SCCM Deployment Scenarios

 

Scenario 1 - Available only

If the deployment is Available only, the user will only see a toast notification in the system tray for a few seconds, Office update will never be deployed automatically.  The problem is this notification isn’t context sensitive so it simply takes end user to Software Center and it also doesn’t ensure security compliance.  Therefore, approach isn’t used often in my experience.

 

Scenario 2 - Available with future Installation Deadline

This scenario is a good fit for customers who desire faster compliance, no reboots for Office 365 ProPlus updates and are comfortable with additional Office 365 ProPlus end user toast notifications, also in app notifications as well as Office 365 ProPlus countdown dialog leading up to deadline.  If the SCCM deployment is Available with future Installation Deadline, Office 365 ProPlus working with OfficeC2RCom application will download the necessary Office build pieces (not the entire build) and stage for installation pulling content from Distribution Point.  When COM is enabled and new build is staged, restart of Windows will not result in installation of update.  Immediately after the newer build is staged, any Office 365 ProPlus application which is reopened will immediately see the “BusBar” with end user option to drive change through “Update now” button.  This is a subtle difference compared to CDN scenario where banner shows only after a number of days.  Clicking the button results in same workflow as defined in CDN section.  When content is prestaged, there are a number of potential notifications, please review bullet items in blue from page Manage Office 365 ProPlus with Configuration Manager to review all details as there are many.

For example:

"BusBar"

Business BarBusiness Bar

Once build is staged, a toast notification might not display until the user clicks the icon in the notification area which is easy to miss. 

"Basic notification" which sometimes be hidden under task bar chevron"Basic notification" which sometimes be hidden under task bar chevron  SystrayReminder2.png

 

7.5 hours prior to deadline, Office will show 'Enforced Toast' which will present above "Office Updates Available" toast to foreground.  If user doesn't click "Update now", end user will potentially receive three additional notifications with countdown.  If no decision is made to postpone, Office applications will be forced closed and updates prior to deadline defined in SCCM.

Minute countdownMinute countdown Second countdownSecond countdownUpdates InstalledUpdates Installed

If user postponed update by clicking 'Postpone' and deadline is eventually reached, standard SCCM restart window will be displayed with countdown.  Additionally, Office may also raise additional notification with 30 minute countdown.  Important to note, countdown from SCCM and Office countdown are not synchronized in any way, they work on separate timers.

 

SCCMRestartWindow.png  prestage and deadline has passed.png

Scenario 3 - Available and Required Installation Deadline have same date

This scenario is best for IT Pros who want to minimize notifications to end user unless deadline has been reached.(Office content is not prestaged)  If the software deployment Available time and Installation Deadline have the same date, SCCM Client will determine that deadline has been missed and therefore make the deployment immediate.  Typical notification workflow will be presented to user.  

SCCMSoftwareChangesRequired.png

In this case since deadline has passed, download will begin automatically.

downloadinginstalling.png

Once content has been downloaded, SCCM will immediately initiate Office update with following logic:  

  • If all Office applications are closed, update will occur with no reboot. 
  • If any Office application are open standard SCCM reboot workflow occurs.

restartwindow.png

The end user will begin to see SCCM “Restart Window” below which shows countdown until restart is forced.  The countdown frequency of notification are controlled solely by SCCM Client and can be configured within Client Settings node within SCCM Console.

SCCMRestartWindow.png

FAQ:

Is there a simple way to hide all notifications in Office such as the “Biz Bar” with button “Update Now?”

Yes. Use “Hide Update Notifications” GPO or registry

HKLM\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\office\16.0\common\officeupdate
"hideupdatenotifications"=dword:00000001

This registry setting doesn't apply to deadline notifications such as the large white splash screen with countdown.This registry setting doesn't apply to deadline notifications such as the large white splash screen with countdown.

 

 

Is there an Microsoft official page which talks about this topic?

Yes. Manage Office 365 ProPlus with Configuration Manager

 

If the download is supposed to only contain deltas and stage to C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Updates\Download, why in my environment is it staged in C:\Windows\ccmcache and full build? (~2GB)

This means SCCM “Peer Cache” feature is enabled and content is available to be shared with other peers.  Windows is leveraging a NTFS feature called “Sparse Files”.  Looking closely at size on disk details, you can compare the differences between the full data and the one on the right using peer cache. (Peer cache really only downloaded 80 MB.)

Peercache.jpg

I’ve done everything I can think of and OfficeC2RCom application never shows within MMC console.  In fact, when I browse COM applications from within dcomconfg.exe, My Computer has a red down arrow?

This means COM, part of .NET may be corrupted on machine.  Office cannot register application as COM itself is broken.  Typically this is edge case and requires rebuild of Windows :(

 

You mentioned On idle update feature in CDN section but was omitted for SCCM, why?

"By design", feature is enabled only for CDN scenario.

 

Users who launch Office immediately after logon receive message "Updating Office, please wait a moment".  Why?

UpdatingOfficeWait.jpg

This means Office update was attempted while applications were open which cannot succeed.  Therefore, build was staged to retry update by Microsoft Office Click-to-Run Service on Windows startup.  In this edge case, the user was able to access desktop and launch a Office application while Office update process is in progress.  If easily reproducible, this is often a reflection of slow boot process and Windows startup performance.  Best to troubleshoot by removing 3rd party filter drivers and or startup items.

 

I've tried everything and Software Center never shows Office 365 Client build applicable to my machine?

Review how Office 365 ProPlus determines priority:

 

1st Priority : GPO "UpdatePath" - HKLM\software\policies\microsoft\office\16.0\common\officeupdate!updatepath
2nd Priority : GPO "UpdateChannel" - HKLM\software\policies\microsoft\office\16.0\common\officeupdate!updatebranch
3rd Priority : "UpdateURL" or UpdatePath="\\Server\Share" under HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Office\ClickToRun\Configuration
4th Priority : "CDNBaseURL" - HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Office\ClickToRun\Configuration\CDNBaseUrl

Reflecting on priority list above, have you intentionally or unintentionally set a GPO "UpdatePath" - HKLM\software\policies\microsoft\office\16.0\common\officeupdate!updatepath or included an element inside configuration.xml during initial installation for UpdatePath HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Office\ClickToRun\Configuration\UpdatePath="\\Server\Share"? This in effect breaks native updates via SCCM as they take precedence.  To resolve, remove these values and reset HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Office\ClickToRun\Configuration UpdateChannelChanged to False, run Automatic Updates 2.0 scheduled task manually (or be patient and allow it to run) and then perform Software Updates Deployment Evaluation Cycle from SCCM Control Panel Applet.

 

You didn't mention updating from on-premises file share, why?

Updating Office 365 ProPlus from File Shares has been deemphasized as a strategy.  Initially Office 365 ProPlus didn't support update workflows such as SCCM or Delivery Optimization and therefore customers used this approach.  However, this is resolved with SCCM Current Branch and modern versions of Windows 10 this is no longer necessary. (still supported just less adopted)

 

The Author

This blog post is brought to you by Dave Guenthner, a Senior Premier Field Engineer and “ProPlus Ranger” at Microsoft. Feel free to share your questions and feedback in the comments below.

20 Comments
Occasional Contributor

Thanks for this overview. This subject seems to be under-documented so had to try to figure a lot of this out through trial and error. There are so many values in the HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Office\ClickToRun\Configuration key and very little info on what the heck is going on in there. Anyway, one thing I was wondering about is the UpdateChannelChanged value. You mention resetting it after removing some values that interfere with SCCM processing. What should that value normally be? Is there any reason why you'd ever want to set it to "True"?

 

Thanks,

Doug

Microsoft

I agree 100% not documented enough.. I'm working with the folks who manage docs.microsoft.com to include additional information and of course posted this blog to address some of the routine questions I receive each day.  UpdateChannelChanged is a Microsoft internal and managed value which is why its not documented broadly.  It simply toggles to True on a change request like channel change.  Office will reset this to False after the next successful update, like going from build 1 to build 2.  Once False, another change request can be issued. (it should be a non-issue for you to be concerned about)  However, if you at one time set a custom update path like \\O365\Updates and never populated share with newer builds and disabled Automatic Updates, clients can become orphaned because they will never receive a successful update, ever.  Since this value is True, the Office client may not respect a new GPO for channel assignment because it believes the original change remains pending.  This was more of a troubleshooting tip to help the few unwind custom configuration in favor of CDN or SCCM.

New Contributor
Thank you for the detailed overview , Monthly Updates from CDN can be deployed with SCCM .
Microsoft

@Lassaad_TOUKABRI You're correct.  However while its possible to deploy Monthly builds via SCCM, for this scenario Microsoft recommends leveraging technologies such as Delivery Optimization and Office 365 ProPlus.(DO)  The reason is Monthly Channel can offer four or sometimes five builds in a month which is a lot of content to mirror on-premises.  While DO is technically a Windows technology, investments are being made in Office to ensure we can take advantage of this approach.  Being able to share content peer to peer using a cloud service is super exciting and something we're learning about every day.  Thanks for giving blog posting a read.

Regular Visitor

"Additionally, Office may also raise additional notification with 30 minute countdown.  Important to note, countdown from SCCM and Office countdown are not synchronized in any way, they work on separate timers."

 

How is this user experience any good? Surely you'd want to be able to deploy the O365 update just like any other Windows Update where SCCM controls all notifications. We should be able to simply have a deadline on the update where it installs in the background with no other Office notifications and more importantly, no requirement to shutdown office apps. In other words, to have the same behavior as we did with Office 2013/2016 ProPlus updates.

Microsoft

Nico, we're in alignment and I agree with you.  I've shared our sentiments with the team who owns this code to hopefully influence future design to align with your wishes.

New Contributor

We totally moved to CDN keeping approx 10000 seats up-to-date globally even in traditional WAN environment, Delivery Optimization is our friend (80% of downloads are from peers in same subnet)
In SCCM we only have the setup.exe and XML file, the just needed content is pulled from CDN, e.g. we offer the language packs/proofing tools in software center but the content will be pulled from CDN, even installing Project and Visio through CDN is more efficient now as only the delta of about 300MB on top of existing ProPlus becomes downloaded

The "MatchInstalled" parameter was the best improvement ever (not available in the OCT yet)

Microsoft

@Olaf Thyssen This is awesome news and we appreciate you taking time to post!  We've worked really hard to position "Lean Approach" as desired implementation and we're thrilled to receive feedback on approach.   

New Contributor

As for moving from SCCM to CDN, it seems to me this would be akin to moving from SCCM to WUfB in terms of both content sources and control of the updates. Is this a fairly accurate comparison? 

Question on SCCM updates...we see that we are distributing ~2GB/month per channel/bitness of O365. Is the client downloading the entire 2GB from the DP to ccmcache and extracting what it needs or skipping and this step and just downloading the bits it needs from the DP to C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Updates\Download? (Not yet using peer cache)

Microsoft

SCCM downloads entire build (~2 GB) from CDN and distributes that content to your distribution points.  On the Windows Client, during the Software Updates Deployment Evaluation Cycle, SCCM client will pull down just the files needed (deltas) from closest distribution point.  If the client is way out of date, the content payload will be much larger of course since there is so much change.   We publish this information here:

Download sizes for updates to Office 365 ProPlus

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/officeupdates/download-sizes-office365-proplus-updates

Occasional Contributor

Hello, we are on 1908 and use SCCM to update Office. Since we are doing Deployments without DP content (pull from Microsoft Update is selected) we wish to use DO. We run Windows 10 Enterprise.

 

So what is a bit confusing it the below.

 

For Version 1908 through Version 1911, you need to configure a registry key on devices in your organization before installing Microsoft 365 Apps on those devices. You can use the following reg add command to configure the registry key:

 

reg add HKLM\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\office\16.0\common\officeupdate /v SetDOAsPrimary /t REG_DWORD /d 1

 

And then this:

 

If you're using Configuration Manager or local network shares to manage installing and updating Microsoft 365 Apps on devices, Delivery Optimization won't be used. Delivery Optimization is used only if you're installing or updating Microsoft 365 Apps directly from the Office Content Delivery Network (CDN) on the internet. If you want some of these devices, such as those on Monthly Channel, to take advantage of Delivery Optimization, you need to reconfigure them to use the Office CDN. You can do that by using the Office Deployment Tool or Group Policy settings, depending how your environment is configured. You have to remove any configuration of the update path as well as the use of the OfficeMgmtCOMattribute, which enables Configuration Manager to manage updates.

 

 

I have added the key but haven't disabled the COM, so SCCM is still responsible for updating Office.

BUT, considering that there is no Software Update Package created on DPs (since we only push out metadata and point clients to MU for the bits) will DO be used in this scenario?

 

In this case, the PrioritizeBits will do its work as in the past.

 

Now, if we fully switch to CDN for updates so we disable COM, this will mean that the reg key will start functioning again for DO?


Wouldn't it be better to move our Office ProPlus workload to Intune if we are co-managed? That would serve us the same I guess and lean more towards Modern Desktop and would completely take out the SCCM parameter?

 

 

Thanks!
Alex

New Contributor

@Alexander Kanakaris , we're totally using CDN and DO for Office 365 management and have taken away the burden from SCCM.

The "solution" consists of three elements in our environment: 

 

1) GPO for Office Updates
The SCCM client used Local Group Policy for its client settings so I'm using old fashioned GPOs to make sure that my settings are the boss.
Of course disabling the COM and clearing the Update Path which could point to internal URL or UNC is the main purpose.
Even that COM is disabled you still get the figures in \Software Library\Overview\Office 365 Client Management through hardware inventory.


Below are my settings

 

GPO.jpg

 

2) GPO for Delivery Optimization

I like the GPO over the SCCM client settings as I have much more control over different pieces.

 

GPO2.jpg

 

3) Using SCCM Distribution Points as DOINC

More than 60 distribution points across the globe have the Connected Cache (aka DOINC) enabled

(100GB is in use as we are using Windows Updates for Business (WUfB) for patching and this uses DO and DOINC)

GPO3.jpg

 

But make sure you enable DOINC in your boundary groups, otherwise the client will connect directly to Windows Updates

GPO4.jpg

 

Final Note

Don't blame me that it is ... let's say ... a traditional approach with GPOs, but above combination suites well in our traditional WAN with limited breakouts or bad lines in some parts of the world. It is just to give some ideas


Recent COVID problematic proven the setup as users working from home have split tunnel in VPN client going directly to CDN / Windows Updates while internal clients using the cache on SCCM servers. With the combined bandwidth of all Internet accesses at home the 1809 to 1909 feature update went faster and smoother than any OS update in the past. Every user could easily download the approx. 3GB update without bothering our WAN.

 

I'm sure that similar things can be achieved with Office 365 policies (O365 portal) and Intune URIs and policies (preview).
With the Co-Management you always need to think at which end to create the settings and whose settings will win on the client at the end of the day.

I feel this is the most challenging part.

 

My next configuration change is related to Cloud Management Gateway to have clients installing their software from the cloud distribution point (split tunnel) and not contacting internal servers through VPN. With that move we might go back to SCCM based operating system patching as with WUfB you don't have much control over "bad" patches.

 

Occasional Contributor

@Olaf Thyssen Thanks for the great article, I am following similar procedures like yours -split VPN is there- but what I was wondering mostly was about remaining under SCCM management for Office ProPlus updates (COM+ Enabled) but still use DO by using the referenced registry key.

 

Probably you might haven't tested this kind of configuration yet so I will and report back of my findings.

 

Cheers,

Alex

New Contributor

@Alexander Kanakaris , I'm taking the lazy approach. Let the C2R do its job, Microsoft improved a lot here and it is working smoothly. Via collections I'm identifying the amount of clients under each major version and if I see higher amount of clients stuck in older version I'll dig into it. 

 

We had SCCM management in place where the source was DFS share, not happy with it, always to keep the sources up-to-date. We thought about SCCM/CDN but we asked ourselves why to administrate SCCM to tell C2R what to do as C2R is already grown up and can handle it on its own.

We're installing all O365 applications, language packs and proofing tools through CDN/DO, why not doping it with the updates, too.

 

SCCM has of course the monitoring and reporting capabilities, I'm missing those in the cloud but rumors say they are coming at some point.

So far relying on the hardware inventory is ok with me.

 

I'm interested to hear from your experience with SCCM/DO

 

 

Microsoft

@Olaf Thyssen Thank you for your "Hybrid" steps with CDN + DO + Connected Cache.  I will be directing my customers to your clear summary as its a great way to transition to cloud only at some future point.  Thank you!

Senior Member

Hi Dave,

 

my Organization is planning on moving to downloading update from CDN. Is there a Microsoft documentation, images of what services are involved and how is update downloaded. Are they downloaded from Office 365 CDN? if so private and public cdn type is both set to false in SPO so from where exactly update is getting downloaded.

 

Regards,

Yash

Microsoft

@Tilehurst The Office client uses a CNAME called Officecdn.microsoft.com to fetch content.  Using CDN is excellent choice especially when most are working remote.

Frequent Visitor

Whilst using the CDN solution with three different phased deployment rings configured it quickly became clear that the different schedules were not being adhered to. We had systems in Enterprise ring getting the update before those in our Initial and Pilot rings… Not good!  

 

After working through this with Microsoft it appears the delay and random scheduling is apparently "by design", and is caused by Microsoft's global throttling policy.   :facepalm:

 

Throttling configuration is randomly configured by Microsoft on a per-device basis. This essentially renders the phased deployment ring approach useless when following the standard configuration for CDN. 

 

In the snippet below taken from the log files you can see the MROThroVal=5 and the MachineThroVal=177. This essentially means the update will not download until the MROThroVal is the same or greater than the MachineThroVal.. In my case this took five days  These values cannot be altered as they are controlled by Microsoft.  :sad:

 

RichardStephens_0-1593684182860.png

 

However according to the Microsoft engineer the only way around this is to use the updatetargetversion value which apparently overrides the throttling configuration.

 

So it appears all is not lost, however this isn’t great given that this is meant to be a modern more secure service, just one that isn’t easily controlled.

 

Can Office36 update management be introduced to co-management and Intune in the same way as Windows Update for Business? This would be great to see and would enable us to move away from Group Policy… Just a thought.

 

Come patch Tuesday I will be testing this and will report back with another update (no pun intended) :lol:

 

Richard

Senior Member

@RichardStephens O365 update management is already introduced to Intune. You just need to plan for switching the workload

 

https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/core-infrastructure-and-security/co-management-of-office-clic...

Frequent Visitor

@Tilehurst 

 

Apologies I should have covered it in a little more detail.. .. 

 

I meant it would be great to something like "Office365 Updates for Business" in the MEM Admin Center similar to Windows Update For Business..

 

Office365 is pretty much a given on all devices in Microsoft environment and it would make sense (in my head at least) to have it managed centrally through an additional blade (are they called blades?)  in the MEM Admin Center.   

 

If "Office365 Updates for Business" could bypass the throttling from the outset that would be awesome as well :smile:

 

MEM.PNG