Are You Ready?

On July 14, 2015 Microsoft is ending support for Windows Server 2003. What does this mean?

It means:

  • NO UPDATES – Microsoft will no longer be developing updates
  • NO SAFE HAVEN – CSA is only the option for Enterprise customers through MS Services
  • NO COMPLIANCE – Customers could become non-compliant with various industry standards including the PCI


Why Risk It?

EmptyFuelGageWarningLightWhy take the risk? Think about this, if you were driving in your car and the fuel light came on, what would you do? Well, it warns you that something is going to happen in the not-to-distant future (i.e. you’ll run out of fuel). The fuel warning light gives you advance notice that you need to find a gas station and re-fuel, or consequentially run out of gas! Similarly, Microsoft is warning the IT community that Windows Server 2003 is soon going to be out of support. So we have the opportunity now to plan and start our migration to a newer Operating System (i.e. Windows Server 2012 R2).

More information can be found here:

As a comparison, here are the Top 10 Features of Windows Server 2012 R2:

  1. Live migration with RDMA
  2. Multi-node Hyper-V Replica
  3. Shared VHDX guest clustering
  4. Enhanced Linux integration services
  5. Hyper-V network virtualization
  6. Multi-tenant VPN gateway
  7. Low-cost, highly available file-based storage
  8. Storage Spaces with automatic tiering
  9. Storage de-duplication for VDI
  10. Cross-version live migration


What To Do Now?

So what should you do now? How do you start the process? Microsoft has provided some guidance by breaking down the process into 4 steps:

  1. Discover
  2. Assess
  3. Target
  4. Migrate

Microsoft also has as tool called the Windows Server 2003 Migration Planning Assistant, which provides key steps, outcomes, and additional resources.

In a subsequent article, we will walk through an example of a migration.



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