Tag: 2003

Many companies will miss Windows server deadline

my_tombstoneCompanies are doomed to miss the end of the life of Windows Windows Server 2003, warned software experts.

The server operating system will retire in six months and many companies will still have boxes running the OS when Microsoft finally kills it off.

David Mayer, the director of Microsoft Solutions for Insight said that companies had adopted an approach that “it is not broken so they did not need to fix it.  It was the first really mainstream server from Microsoft, a really solid OS, and gave Microsoft a lot of credibility in server software.”

Microsoft will end security updates for Server 2003 on July 14 which should end the product’s support lifecycle. It has been supported years longer than the usual decade.

But there are still millions of machines running Server 2003, with pockets of the software in most data centres and it is a significant effort to upgrade.  While getting rid of a dead XP laptop is not a problem, server replacement is tricky.

A server might contain unsupported software and the company that built them may be out of business or the in-house development team may have been disbanded.   Updating this software might be impossible.

Many of those applications are 32 bit and while Windows Server 2012 R2 offers a compatibility mode to run such applications it does not always work.

Microsoft  is likely to make a killing out of after-retirement support contracts, or “Custom Support,” to its largest customers. Under a Custom Support agreement, Microsoft provides patches only for the security vulnerabilities it has rated “critical,” its highest threat ranking.

This time Redmond is suggesting that its customers facing end of support to shift their servers to the cloud. However, that might be an additional change too far for many companies.


Enterprises scramble over Windows Server 2003 shutdown

ucs_Cray1_installCorporations, which are still having trouble getting rid of their Windows XP machines, are facing an even bigger challenge  — the shutting down of Windows Server 2003.

The server software is about to be chopped and many companies still use it – after all it has provided more than a decade of loyal service.

From 14 July 2015, Windows Server 2003 users with a standard support package will not receive updates or patches. Microsoft is offering continued support for those who want to pay extra, but that defeats the purpose of not upgrading.

The software itself is more than a decade old it has become a multi-layered mess of patches and updates to keep pace with changes in business and technology. It also contains code which is so old that most people have forgotten about it.

It also belongs to a time when the network was the main deal, and the Internet was just something you sent email on, and looked at really terrible webpages. Most security problems were internal.

Yet for some reason Windows Server 2003 is still there and companies do not appear to be rushing to get rid of it.

Microsoft estimates there are more than 10 million live systems relying on Windows Server 2003, with almost one-third of those being in Europe.

The main problem is that most companies depend on software which might not work with the new operating systems.

Either way all this is a good sales opportunity for businesses wanting to offer upgrade services.