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A vendor patch is an update to a program provided by a software vendor to fix some kind of problem with the software. A patch is typically a small update that does not significantly change the functionality. Patches are typically deployed to fix bugs that have been discovered in a program, especially security vulnerabilities. The term distinguishes patches from the vendor from unofficial patches from users.
Vendor patches are released to fix bugs in a piece of software after a program has been released. Before the internet became popular, patches were typically distributed by floppy disk. These days, they are typically issued over the internet. Many programs can automatically download and apply these patches themselves. Windows Update is a good example. Patches are typically small and do not change the system very much. More significant updates are referred to as “service packs.” Vendor patches fix problems such as crashes or features of a program working poorly. As more software becomes internet-facing, patches that fix security vulnerabilities are increasingly important.