Microsoft seems to have retired its popular update service, Hotfix as indicated by a message on the company’s official website. If you are looking to download hotfixes through Microsoft support website, you will be instead shown the following message,
The Hotfix service is no longer available.
Instead, you can find your fix or patch by upgrading to the latest update available for your product. You can also obtain Microsoft drivers, software updates, and other support files by downloading them from the Microsoft Catalog, the Microsoft Download Center, or upgrade to Windows 10. Windows 10 contains the most up-to-date security and other features built right in.
Microsoft Hotfix service discontinued
Microsoft releases software updates by way of Hotfixes, Windows updates, and Service updates. While Windows updates and Service packs are familiar for a normal Windows user, Hotfixes have been sought mostly by PC Administrators looking for a fix when they encounter a problem with their systems. The reason being, that Hotfixes are very specific, so while it may not hurt to apply them unless your problem matches the knowledge base description, they probably will not help the situation. Therefore, it requires the expertise of a system administrator to really apply the correct hotfix.
Hotfixes also requires prior testing before they are installed. Hence, they are treated like a component that hasn’t been thoroughly tested. Hotfixes are solutions to bugs discovered by Microsoft’s development and testing process or through support cases logged with Microsoft.
Microsoft is yet to make a formal announcement regarding the retirement of hotfixes. If you browse Microsoft Update Catalog website you will still find 1000s of hotfixes available, which suggests that previous hotfixes are still available for users to download.
The last hotfix release for Windows 8 happened in 2015 and the last release for Windows Server 2012 R2 in 2016 according to the Microsoft Update Catalog website.