The Death of Windows Server 2003 and SQL 2005 – What’s your plan of attack?

, The Death of Windows Server 2003 and SQL 2005 – What’s your plan of attack?

Hopefully, by now you have migrated all your servers off Windows Server 2003. Support for Server 2003 ended on July 15th 2015, meaning that if you still have servers in production which are running this OS , you are at heightened risk for security breach and will not be in compliance with any regulatory standards that may apply to your industry, or to those of your customers whose information you may be holding on your network.

Next in line for obsolescence is Microsoft SQL 2005, which reaches end-of-life on April 12th 2016. If you are still running SQL 2005, you are 4 – count ‘em – 4! – versions behind the current release, SQL 2014, with SQL 2016 now in pre-release and beta testing. The developments in the SQL product over the past decade have been staggering and if you haven’t kept up, you are missing out on a whole host of features that could make your whole organization more productive. Purely from a performance aspect, Microsoft estimates that SQL 2014 works 13 times faster than SQL 2005, meaning your staff benefits from blazing fast response times to database queries.  There is plenty of material available which outlines the benefits of upgrading SQL, but this Microsoft datasheet does a great job of aggregating the many improvements in the product over the years:

Whether you are running Server 2003, SQL 2005, or any other Microsoft products that have reached end-of-life, you leave yourself at a disadvantage in several key areas:

  • No updates – This spells vulnerability.
  • No compliance – The lack of compliance with various regulatory and industry standards could have a devastating impact on your business.
  • No application support – Many applications will also see the end of support once the underlying platform they are running on is unsupported.  This includes all Microsoft applications.
  • No Savings – Staying where you are will cost more in the end.  Maintenance costs for aging hardware will increase and efforts to isolate and secure an unsupported system will most definitely drive up support costs.

Migrating to Windows Server 2012 and SQL 2014 will allow you to see reduced cost of ownership, increased security, scalability, improved performance, increased functionality, manageability and up-to-date product support.  The best approach to migrating includes a four-step process:

  • Discover
  • Assess
  • Target
  • Migrate

A successful migration plan also includes allowing enough time to be thorough in all of the phases.  If you need any assistance with planning or performing your migration, Adaptive Solutions can help.

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