13 Nov 2014
Days numbered for support on Windows Server 2003

Days numbered for support on Windows Server 2003

Posted by Chris Thomas

For News Opinion Windows Server 2003

Windows Server 2003 is fast approaching its end-of-life, with Microsoft announcing the official date for end-of-life support as July 14th, 2015.

Windows Server 2003 was released over 10 years ago and experts are reporting an install base of over 10 million systems, many running mission-critical hosted services. This announcement is certainly a concern for business and IT leaders, now having to consider the risk of running applications on servers that will not be supported beyond July next year.

Lead times from migration can be extensive and a lack of forward-thinking may cause issues. A last minute, ‘forced’ migration is likely to cause unnecessary stability and security issues – and plenty of stress! In order to ensure continuity of service, support and security, it’s crucial to prepare a coherent migration plan, well in advance of the end-of-life date.

Developing a Road Map

Careful planning and coordination of a migration is key to a successful upgrade. Assessing existing workloads and determining whether some or all of those workloads will be migrated to a Cloud solution is a consideration. It is possible to do more with less hardware than ever before and Cloud may be a more cost-effective and easier to manage solution.

Your Options

Migrate and upgrade

In most cases migrating and upgrading would be the best possible option. In which case, you’ll be starting to plan your migration now.

Scoping the requirement, considering a phased approach and being thorough will avoid a last minute panic and ensure a smooth and effective migration.

Upgrade the server

This is a high-risk strategy. With the main attraction of upgrading the server being cost savings, this may cause application errors that could result in service outages and have serious consequences for business operations.

Do nothing

For those who may be in the process of a complete strategic review and plan to replace all applications from the ground up, doing nothing may be a temporary viable solution. In this instance, the risk and vulnerability of having unsupported servers and applications may be a considered one, and may be outweighed by the benefits of focusing resource on a complete systems overhaul.

For more information on how the end of support on your Windows Server 2003 could affect your business, call our experts on 03330 11 22 55.