What’s the right time to deploy .NET service packs?

I’ve probably posted ranted about .NET before but a post in the newsgroup makes me revisit this.  The gentleman installed SBS sp1 and at the end of the install it had flipped the default web sites to .net 2.  I can’t remember if sp1 includes .net 2 ( I thought it was in R2 that .net2 is in there) but regardless, run the www.sbsbpa.com afterwards to ensure what .NET version you end up with.

Anything hooked on to the IIS “default web site” should be on .net 1.1.4322

Okay so here’s an interesting tidbit… WSUS 3 needs .net 2.0 http://technet2.microsoft.com/windowsserver/en/library/912b37d7-021e-4c95-b317-49dd15b4611c1033.mspx?mfr=true

but on my box, WSUS Administration is on 1.1.4322, Self update is on .net 1, but Inventory and content is on .net 2.0 on my box.  Hey it’s working, I’m not complaining.

SharePoint V2 (default to SBS 2003) is on 1.1.4322

SharePoint v3 will want .NET 3.0 http://blogs.technet.com/sbs/archive/2006/11/30/wss-v3-0-installation-on-sbs-2003.aspx

So if you have SBS 2003 R2 with SharePoint v2 adn v3 in a side by side install, you will have .net 1, 2 AND 3 all on one box, all there happily until you go to install Service Packs.  When .net offers up a .net Service pack the question has been asked of me when should one approve it and install it.

My answer:  When I”m in a really really really calm, zen mood, which obviously doesn’t happen often.  With .net they tend to be troublesome so just be mentally prepared that they will barf and then when they don’t be very pleasantly surprised.  If you get stuck you can always use Aaron’s tool to rip them out and reinstall them.  http://blogs.msdn.com/astebner/archive/2006/05/30/611355.aspx   Okay yes I’m overstating the issue here, but with service packs and patches the idea that they will get magically “fixed” my Microsoft when the .net issue is with your machine, I guess what I’m saying is that this idea that all patches all the time will be perfect and with no issues and we’ll all have happy servers is not reality.  We have crusty boxes with third party software that is always like your College professors that thought they were the only people that gave you assigments so you ended up coming out of classes going “will I ever finish these lab assignments!”

The right time to deploy .net service packs is when you are prepared to handle issues with them should they arise.  Be prepared to uninstall the .net specific instance and reinstall it.  Be prepared that installing a new .net version may want to flip the older ones to the new ones.  Sometimes this happens.  Run www.sbsbpa.com after each service pack would be my best recommendation.

But bottom line be prepared.

 

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