Microsoft is going to pull the plug on Windows server 2008/2008 R2 on January 14, 2020. The end of life for these products means that you no longer get free security and non-security updates, free support options or updates to online technical information.
What does the end of Windows Server 2008 R2 support mean for the users?
Once the software maker removes support services, you will be on your own with these products, which means in case of any operational issues, you won’t be able to rely on the company for help. Moreover, with Microsoft no longer handling security gaps, it will only be a matter of time before infiltrators begin to exploit the vulnerabilities in such systems.
End of life for Windows Server 2008 R2 Support: What are your options?
Updating the IT infrastructure can undoubtedly be a mammoth task that is both time and resource consuming. Microsoft is offering 3 options to its customers:
- Upgrade to Windows Server 2016: This is the obvious evolutionary path to take if you have extensive investment in physical hardware. It also happens to be the most expensive of the three. However, on-premises modernization will give you enough time to manage your data safely and efficiently till you are ready to transition to the cloud. Plus, you get the built-in security and the container support that comes with new Microsoft products.
- Move to Azure: Of the three options, this is the most cost-effective and one that comes highly recommended by Microsoft. This is your opportunity to get up-to-date infrastructure along with superior protection. Plus, if you make the move to Azure, Microsoft is willing to throw in three years of free extended support for your infrastructure while you transition to the cloud. If you are interested in accessing new operational capabilities, with this upgrade, you can get there without burning a hole in your pocket.
- Stay where you are: Of the three, this will cost you the second highest. The option is only offered for three years and exclusively for servers actively involved in the infrastructure as you opt for one of the two choices listed above. It will cost you approximately 75% of your current operating system expenditure.
In order to access this option, you will need to have the Enterprise Subscription agreement or Software Assurance. If you already own the Premium Assurance, you will get whatever is left of the promised 6 years of extended support.
With less than 6 months to go for the end of life of Windows Server 2008 R2 Support, you are as it is running late by a few months. So, start considering your appetite for security risks, the complexity of your IT environment and your financial constraints to choose an option that will work for your company.