If your business relies on Windows Server 2008 or Windows Server 7 for day-to-day operations, you probably know they’re nearing the end of their respective support timelines.

What you may not know, however, is how you’re going to make the transition to a new server environment as seamless as possible.

One of the most straightforward solutions is migrating your existing platform to a cloud-based environment. Whether you’re migrating a single server or dozens, a cloud solution makes the task incredibly straightforward. At the same time, the cloud offers the added benefits of streamlined compliance, next-level security, and rapid scalability. Here’s what else you need to know so your business can use the Windows Server end-of-life dates as an opportunity for growth.

Critical Dates for Windows Server End of Life

SQL Server 2008 and 2008 R2

End of support date: July 9, 2019

Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2

End of support date: Jan. 14, 2020

Exchange Server 2010

End of support date: Jan. 14, 2020

What End of Support Means

Before we explore the finer details of seamless server migration, it may help to clarify precisely what it means when Microsoft ends support for one of its products. As of the dates listed above, Microsoft will no longer offer additional:

  • Free security updates on-premises
  • Non-security updates
  • Free support options
  • Online technical content updates

Why wouldn’t you want to continue using these products after their end of support dates? In short, you’re leaving your network vulnerable to cybercriminals with a platform that’s no longer protected against the latest threats. As cybercriminals figure out ways to compromise outdated networks, you’re leaving your network’s door open by using outdated systems.

The Simplest Solution

If you’re happy with how Server 2008 has worked for your organization, you’ll probably want to begin by exploring Microsoft’s newest server solution. In response to the end of Server 2008 support life, Microsoft is recommending that businesses upgrade to Microsoft Azure, and they’re offering several incentives to encourage companies to do so.

Migrating your Server 2008 platform to Microsoft Azure offers the most straightforward way to prepare your organization for Server 2008’s end-of-support life. Microsoft is currently allowing businesses to upgrade Windows Server on Azure at no additional cost.

If you choose to transition to Azure, you can hold off on upgrading to a newer edition of Windows Server VM for three years at no extra charge. That means your organization will have until Jan. 14, 2023, to continue using Server 2008 with extended security updates as long as it’s hosted on Azure. This strategy offers you a few more years either to plan for a long-term server solution or to test out the Azure environment.

Springfield, MO, IT Solutions

If you need a little help preparing your organization for Windows Server 2008 end-of-support life, contact the experts at PCnet today. We’ll help you understand your options so you can make the best decision for your business. Whether you like the simplicity of migrating to Azure or you want to explore the possibility of building a new server environment from the ground up, our team has the skills and knowledge to use your server upgrade as an opportunity to grow your business.