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SP 1800-31 (Draft)

Improving Enterprise Patching for General IT Systems: Utilizing Existing Tools and Performing Processes in Better Ways

Date Published: November 17, 2021
Comments Due: January 10, 2022
Email Comments to: cyberhygiene@nist.gov


Tyler Diamond (NIST), Alper Kerman (NIST), Murugiah Souppaya (NIST), Kevin Stine (NIST), Brian Johnson (MITRE), Chris Peloquin (MITRE), Vanessa Ruffin (MITRE), Mark Simos (Microsoft), Sean Sweeney (Microsoft), Karen Scarfone (Scarfone Cybersecurity)


The National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence (NCCoE) has released two draft publications on enterprise patch management for public comment. Patching is a critical component of preventive maintenance for computing technologies—a cost of doing business, and a necessary part of what organizations need to do in order to achieve their missions. However, keeping software up-to-date with patches remains a problem for most organizations.

Draft NIST Special Publication (SP) 800-40 Revision 4, Guide to Enterprise Patch Management Planning: Preventive Maintenance for Technology, discusses common factors affecting enterprise patch management and recommends creating an enterprise strategy to simplify and operationalize patching while also improving reduction of risk. Draft SP 800-40 Revision 4 will replace SP 800-40 Revision 3, Guide to Enterprise Patch Management Technologies.

Draft NIST Special Publication (SP) 1800-31, Improving Enterprise Patching for General IT Systems: Utilizing Existing Tools and Performing Processes in Better Ways, builds upon the work in SP 800-40 Revisions 3 and 4. SP 1800-31 describes an example solution that demonstrates how tools can be used to implement the inventory and patching capabilities organizations need for routine and emergency patching situations, as well as implementing workarounds and other alternatives to patching. 

NOTE: A call for patent claims is included in Volumes B and C. For additional information, see the Information Technology Laboratory (ITL) Patent Policy--Inclusion of Patents in ITL Publications.



cyber hygiene; enterprise patch management; firmware; patch; patch management; software; update; upgrade; vulnerability management
Control Families

None selected


Draft SP 1800-31

Supplemental Material:
Project homepage (web)

Related NIST Publications:
SP 800-40 Rev. 4 (Draft)

Document History:
09/10/20: SP 1800-31 (Draft)
11/17/21: SP 1800-31 (Draft)


Security and Privacy
patch management; vulnerability management

software & firmware


Laws and Regulations
Executive Order 14028