The lowdown on patch management software

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What is it? Patch management software automates fixing of security vulnerabilities and software flaws.

What types are there? The two main categories are agent-based programs, which are installed on each computer, and agentless systems, which scan systems from a central server.

How far does patching extend? Besides PCs, servers, mainframes, routers, switches, printers, wireless access points, databases, firewalls and many other items could also have vulnerabilities that require patches.

Must-know info? A patch management product should cover all the operating systems and software that your computers use. Testing patches is essential to make sure that applying the patch won't do more damage than remaining exposed to the vulnerability. And, because of potential conflicts with your systems, you should ask for a free trial of any product'almost all vendors offer them.

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