rmm patch update ctr office apps via policy

RMM patch update issue for click-to-run type office apps via policy

 

Continuum/ConnectWise Command

Continuum, acquired by ConnectWise company is now called ConnectWise Command. It has technologies and integrated services spanning security, backup and monitoring. The platform anticipates and tackles MSPs’ next challenges—mostly helps enterprise-grade managed service providers. It helps the IT support teams monitor, troubleshoot and manage all devices in the network.

What is this blog about?

While we were working on ConnectWise Automate, we found that RMM patches were not getting updated automatically, you always had to manually update these in the CTR type of installations.

Now to resolve this,

Go to: ConnectWise Command > Patching > Legacy Patching > Patch Policies: MS Office Support

Patching Support for Microsoft Office

When you set your patch policies, the configuration of security and critical updates for M365 is recommended.

Why?

Because the RMM agent relies on Microsoft Updates which are made available via a Windows Update.

Difference between the 2 types of Installation: MSI vs. Click-to-Run (CTR)

MSI

MSI is the legacy installation method for Microsoft Office products.

This type of installation use the Standard Windows Update Method:

  • To retrieve updates
  • Deliver the updates
  • Apply them to patch policy configuration

Click-to-Run (CTR)

Click-to-Run is a fairly new type of installation method. This is the technology used to install Office 365 subscriptions as well as most versions of Office 2013 and newer.

It is a new way to deliver and update Microsoft Office to broadband customers. Click-to-Run (CTR) uses Microsoft virtualization and streaming technologies; it does not receive updates via Windows Updates (Microsoft Updates).

To update the Click-To-Run Office version, Microsoft includes Update Options in the Microsoft Applications itself.

Therefore, Click-to-Run Office versions do not support patching through Continuum patch policies.

continuum1
Figure 1: Office Click-to-Run updates are included in the Microsoft Application

How would you know if your Office Version is MSI-Based or Click-to-Run?

The simplest method for determining the installation type is to verify if the program contains an Office Updates section. To identify that, is simple:

  1. In any MS Office application, navigate to File → Account.
  • If the installation is MSI: The no Office Updates section is visible.
  • If the installation is Click-to-Run: An Office Updates section will be visible.
Figure 2: Office Click-to-Run vs MSI-based

How to Handle Patching for Click-to-Run Installations

For Click-to-Run installations, patching is not supported through patch policy. You must ensure automatic updates are enabled in Office:

  1. In the MS Office application, navigate to File → Account.
  2. In the Office Updatessection, locate the Update Options menu (see Figure 1).
  3. In the Update Optionsmenu, verify Enable Updates is selected.

Note: Updates are handled automatically with Enable Updates selected, but users may occasionally see a confirmation prompt before updates are applied.

Supported Office Versions

Below is a breakdown of patch policy support by Office version, installation method, and license type.

MS Office VersionInstallation TypeLicense TypePatch Policy-Supported
Office 2007AnyAny
Office 2010AnyAny
Office 2013.MSIVolume
Click-to-RunPer User 
Office 2016.MSIVolume
Click-to-RunPer User 

“C:\Program Files\Common Files\microsoft shared\ClickToRun\OfficeC2RClient.exe” /update user

This should trigger the Update GUI.

You can also run this silently by adding displaylevel=false forceappshutdown=true:

“C:\Program Files\Common Files\microsoft shared\ClickToRun\OfficeC2RClient.exe” /update user displaylevel=false forceappshutdown=true

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Hardik Pandya
Hardik Pandya

Hardik has IT experience of 23+ years. HP, as we call him, is a Tech Lead at Infrassist and he's been with us for the last 4 years. He has worked and leads his team on diverse migration and automation projects. HP is our ConnectWise and Microsoft Expert. His motto is resolving client issues quickly and with as little friction as possible. He is skilled, experienced and an all-rounder indeed.

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