This week, Microsoft officially started the one-year countdown to the end-of-support date for Windows Server 2003 and Windows Server 2003 R2 that will happen on 15 July 2015. First announced by Microsoft in 2010, organisations still running on Windows Server 2003 now have less than 365 days to migrate their servers in order to avoid security, compliance, additional costs and compatibility risks.
The globally popular and trusted 11-year-old server operating system powers IT infrastructures of many organisations in New Zealand, providing computing workloads for all kinds of enterprise applications supporting email, web and Line of Business applications.
In accordance with Microsoft’s Product Support Lifecycle Policy, assisted support, including updates and patches, from Microsoft will no longer be available after 15 July 2015. While companies can continue to run Windows Server 2003 after this date, this leaves servers and applications vulnerable to security threats and downtime, and may no longer meet compliance requirements. Maintenance costs for aging hardware will also increase along with costs for intrusion detection systems, firewalls and network segmentation.
They obviously have a compelling public cloud (Azure, Office 365) proposition and are keen to get people out of Windows Server 2003. A very good server OS that is now past its prime.
Time to start planning folks: cloud or Windows Server 2012, either way is time to move.