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Patch Night - Wednesday

Every week, the Department of Technology Services (DoTS) requires computers and laptops remain powered on but "logged off” on Wednesday night. BC DoTS performs updates from approximately 8 p.m. on Wednesday night to approximately 4 a.m. Thursday morning. The updates may include: inventory, security updates, application updates, patches, removal of retired software and new software installation. During the process every Wednesday night and Thursday morning the computer, tablet or laptop may reboot one or more times.

BC DoTS may request staff to leave computers powered on but “logged off” on other nights as well for special installs, updates or upgrades.

Frequently Asked Questions

I work in an area that operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week - what should I do?
Areas such as the 911 Public Safety Center, Community Treatment Center, Sheriff's Office and other areas where computers are in use all day and night are handled separately. In most cases, special department-specific procedures will be shared.

Should I just leave my computer on all the time?
BC DoTS recommends that you leave unused devices powered off to save energy. Daily reboots can slightly improve the performance of a computer. Please note there are cases when leaving devices on improves productivity, provides life safety or other organizational or operational benefits. Laptops and many computers have improved and will “sleep” - dramatically reducing electrical load. Powering off or not is ultimately up to the supervisor and the end user to determine. Contact the DoTS Help Desk if you have questions regarding powering your computer off. In general, turn off devices you are not using.

What should I do on Wednesdays?
When leaving work Wednesday afternoon or night, log out but leave the computer running at the login screen. When returning to work Thursday, log in and then use the computer as normal. Contact the Help Desk (448-4030) if you have problems on Thursday morning. If you use external monitors, turn them off to reduce power usage. If patch nights will involve major updates, DoTS will share details. Watch for email updates regarding patch nights.

What should I do if I am going on a long vacation?
You can leave the computer logged out but powered on OR power it off completely. Laptops will draw very little power, and PCs also draw much less power than they did previously. If you choose to leave your computer on, you can turn off the monitor(s).

I use my laptop remotely a lot, what should I do?
Connect laptops to the County network at least once per month to receive updates. We strongly encourage you to connect your laptop weekly on Wednesday nights.

What will happen if my laptop hasn’t been on the network for a while?
Once it connects, it will get updates and you will be required to patch it. It could also receive updates that don’t give you the option to delay, so plan ahead. It may require multiple updates and reboots.

A patch has started and I need to use the computer?
Unfortunately, you should NEVER interfere with updates and patches. Stopping a patch or update can cause the computer to become unstable or fail altogether. If you are in a urgent situation, contact the Help Desk (448-4030) for assistance.

Do Android, iPhone and/or iPad devices need to be left on?
Updates for iphone, ipad and android devices are different than PC/laptop updates. You need to ensure that you apply (allow) all updates upon release, unless otherwise directed by DoTS.