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The Surprising Reason Why Windows Server 2003 Continues To Linger

The Surprising Reason Why Windows Server 2003 Continues to Linger

Arraya Insights | April 1, 2015

Most years, Spring means warmer temperatures, blooming flowers and doctor visits for allergy-sufferers. This year it also means we’re entering the homestretch on support for Windows Server 2003.

On July 14, 2015, Microsoft will stop supporting Windows Server 2003. Most IT leaders have had that date circled on their calendars for a while now and we’ve already talked a lot about the importance of upgrading to newer software to avoid compliance and security risks, among other problems. So, why are we still going on about it? Blame surveys like this one.

Only 15% of IT pros who took part in a recent study by Spiceworks said their company was 100%, fully upgraded off Server 2003. What’s everyone else doing?

  • 48% are partially migrated
  • 28% are in the planning stages
  • 8% are not planning to migrate
  • 1% do not know what’s going on with their server deployments

Sneak in under the wire

In most cases, the gears have at least started turning on moving off of Windows Server 2003. But with that deadline getting close, will companies be able to make it in time? The same Spiceworks survey asked IT pros who had begun a migration when they thought the full scope of it would be completed. They said:

  • within the next month (14%)
  • within the next 2-3 months (35%)
  • within in the next 4-6 months (27%)
  • within the next 6-12 months (12%)
  • beyond the next 12 months (3%)
  • they do not know (10%)

That breaks down to about 49% who should have no trouble getting their migrations completed before Windows Server 2003 hits end of life, while everyone else is on slightly shakier ground or worse. One unexpected delay or issue could drop a company out of the comfort of that four month range and have them facing at least some time with potentially exposed servers.

Care to take a guess as to what’s slowing down these organizations’ migration efforts? Here’s a hint: It’s not cost (37%) and it’s not a lack of time (48%). No, surprisingly, the number one barrier to total migrations is the fact the current system is working so well that there’s no immediate need (51%), even with the deadline less than four months away! There’s a good chance many of those organizations may change their tunes as the deadline gets closer and the risks of sticking with Windows Server 2003 increase. After all, no one wants to see their company in the headlines for compromised security or non-compliance.

Arraya can help in a couple of ways. Our team of Microsoft experts can run assessments to determine your exposure and they have the time to manage a migration off of Windows Server 2003 and onto the new operating system of your choice, whether it’s the latest Windows Server offering or even Azure! They have the collective experience to help avoid pitfalls that can slow the entire process down, something no organization will want as July 14 inches closer.

To learn more about how Arraya Solutions can make a difference in your server migration efforts, head over to www.ArrayaSolutions.com or reach out to your Arraya account executive today. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @ArrayaSolutions.