Six Benefits to Planning for SQL Server 2005 and Windows Server 2003 End of Support Now

As the end of 2014 nears, now is the perfect time to review IT infrastructure plans for the coming year.  If you haven’t made supportability a key initiative for 2015, there are some important dates that you should know about:

After the end of extended support security updates will no longer be available for these products.  Staying ahead of these support dates will help achieve regulatory compliance and mitigate potential future security risks. That means SQL Server 2005 users, especially those running databases on Windows Server 2003, should make upgrading the data platform an IT priority. 

Security isn’t the only reason to think about upgrading. Here are six benefits to upgrading and migrating your SQL Server 2005 databases before the end of extended support:

  1. Maintain compliance – It will become harder to prove compliance with the latest regulations such as the upcoming PCI DSS 3.0. Protect your data and stay on top of regulatory compliance and internal security audits by running an upgraded version of SQL Server.
  2. Achieve breakthrough performance – Per industry benchmarks, SQL Server 2014 delivers 13x performance gains relative to SQL Server 2005 and 5.5x performance gains over SQL Server 2008.  Customers using SQL Server 2014 can further accelerate mission critical applications with up to 30x transaction performance gains with our new in-memory OLTP engine and accelerate queries up to 100x with our in-memory columnstore. 
  3. Virtualize and consolidate with Windows Server – Scale up on-premises or scale-out via private cloud with Windows Server 2012 R2. Reduce costs by consolidating more database workloads on fewer servers, and increase agility using the same virtualization platform on-premises and in the cloud.
  4. Reduce TCO and increase availability with Microsoft AzureAzure Virtual Machines can help you reduce the total cost of ownership of deployment, management, and maintenance of your enterprise database applications. And, it’s easier than ever to upgrade your applications and achieve high availability in the cloud using pre-configured templates in Azure.
  5. Use our easy on-ramp to cloud for web applications – The new preview of Microsoft Azure SQL Database announced last week has enhanced compatibility with SQL Server that makes it easier than ever to migrate from SQL Server 2005 to Microsoft Azure SQL Database. Microsoft’s enterprise-strength cloud brings global scale and near zero maintenance to database-as-a-service, and enables you to scale out your application on demand.
  6. Get more from your data platform investments – Upgrading and migrating your databases doesn’t have to be painful or expensive. A Forrester Total Economic ImpactTM of Microsoft SQL Server study found a payback period of just 9.5 months for moving to SQL Server 2012 or 2014.

Here are some additional resources to help with your upgrade or migration: