With seven Cumulative Updates (CU’s) for System Center 2012 Configuration Manager and System Center 2012 Configuration Manager SP1 released to date, and more on the way, we thought now would be a good time to revisit and clarify our servicing strategy.
New CU’s ship approximately every quarter. The “release timer” starts with the General Availability date of a new product, or the date the previous CU shipped. We maintain a flexible release schedule to accommodate customer demand and improve coordination with internal teams. This helps us to improve the quality of the end product.
Cumulative Update 1 for System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager is in development now, and expected to ship in the 2nd quarter of calendar year 2014.
Each CU is considered a large hotfix. Therefore, the general guidance is to install it if you are encountering, or believe you may encounter, one of the issues fixed by current CU (or a prior one). However, a CU also represents a new servicing baseline; In the event we release a critical on-demand hotfix for Configuration Manager it will require the latest released CU be installed first. This doesn’t happen often, but may affect your test and deployment strategy.
Our Cumulative Updates are truly cumulative; SP1 CU4 contains all of the fixes from SP1 CU1 through CU3. You do not need to install them in sequence, only install the latest.
From a servicing perspective, consider System Center 2012 Configuration Manager SP1 and System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager as two separate products. In other words there is no dependency between SP1 CUs and R2 CUs, and SP1 CUs are not a prerequisite for R2 CUs. There may be issues common to both SP1 and R2, and if so we will document any fixes as needed.