In this PatchZone article I discussed how to configure a custom update view to allow update approvals to be captured from a source group (e.g. a Test Group) and duplicated into one or more additional groups (e.g. production groups).
Patch Manager can also use this technique, but if you have multiple source groups, one of the complications with the technique of update views is that you need to create a separate view for each source group. With Patch Manager we have a simpler, more direct, methodology that can be used for any number of source groups.
From the WSUS Server node of the console, select the Update Approvals tab. This view shows the entire approval event history of the WSUS server, including automatic approvals, and any changes in approval status, such as removing an approval. The list has one entry for each target group where an approval has been set and also provides the date of the approval and the identity of the console user who issued the approval.
In the Computer Group column, open the filter selection dialog and select your source group. In this example, we’re using the group “Test Computers”.
With the list filtered by the source group, you can then sort or filter by the Approved Date. One of the particularly useful features of date filtering in Patch Manager is the ability to filter on more than one specific date. The date filter provides a tree view of the actual date values in the column and you can include or exclude entries by a specific date.
In this scenario we only have three updates approved for our “Test Computers” group, so no additional date filtering will be necessary. Select the updates and click on the “Approve” action in the “Update Approvals” section of the Action Pane. (Notice that I have collapsed the top half of the Action Pane which relates to server actions, in order to see the “Update Approvals” specific actions more clearly.)
This will open the standard Approve Updates dialog where you can now select additional groups to add approvals. In this case I’ve selected “Win2008R2” (my production group).
And that’s all there is to it!