One of the most useful new objects in System Center Configuration Manager 2007 is the Update List. An update list is, well, a list of software updates - that is, it is a fixed list of updates that can be created through a wizard (which also allows downloading of updates). Security rights can be assigned to update lists to enable delegation scenarios. We also have a couple of key compliance reports that use update lists as inputs. The first new compliance report is the "Overall Compliance" report, which gives per-machine compliance for a given update list on a collection. This report assesses whether any of the updates in the list are out of compliance and reports the totals for all machines in the collection. The other new report gives per-update compliance for an update list on a collection, giving the results across the collection for a single update.
Also new to SCCM, search folders are the best way to identify exactly which updates should be put in an update list. To create a search folder, simply navigate to the search folders subnode under the Updates Repository node & select the "new search folder" action. It is easy to create a list of updates, for example, that have the following criteria: critical, security, applicable to Windows, released within the last month, not superseded.
Update lists can be used by the Deploy Software Updates Wizard, Deployment Templates, and the Download Wizard, either through right-click/action pane or by drag and drop.