Windows Server 2003The upcoming end of life for Windows Server 2003 generates many concerns, questions, and issues for businesses of all sizes and types.  Organizations often deal with hardware migrations and the potential downfalls associated with them, but it’s equally important to pay attention to software migrations.  Outdated systems like Windows Server 2003, can present unforeseen issues and obstacles to your business, but migrating also comes with its challenges and concerns.

Operating systems evolve rapidly and with this evolution come maintenance issues. When a new operating system is released under general availability (when a product is ready for use by many customers), we all believe that it has an acceptable level of stability. However, depending on the platform, the time between general availability and accepted stability isn’t always certain.

The Unknown — Important Questions to Consider

If you decide to migrate the software on your server, there are many questions to consider, and to address with your IT provider. For example:

  • How will the upgrade affect the availability of your applications?
  • What new features are critical to you?
  • Will these features positively impact your return on investment in the system?
  • Most importantly, how much downtime can be expected?   

The Known Risks of Using Windows Server 2003 After Support Ends

There are a few potential risks of continuing to use Windows Server 2003 after support ends. The biggest risks include security and compliance:

  • Security

The importance of Windows 2003 support ending can’t be ignored. When support ends, all of the bug fixes and patches will end as well. In addition, new vulnerabilities won’t be addressed. Essentially, your Windows Server 2003 systems will be a huge security risk to your business.

  • Compliance

For an increasing number of businesses, the legal requirement to have an independent audit performed regularly is at issue when running outdated software like Windows Server 2003. These audits can be expensive, often costing more than the price of new licenses.  Plus running an outdated system could potentially impede your ability to meet regulatory and security requirements.

In Conclusion

As a business owner, there’s a lot for you to consider when migrating to a new operating system. For the in-depth information you need, answers to the questions above, and for your own peace of mind, you should always consult your IT provider when considering a software migration of any kind.

Are you still running Windows Server 2003 in your Ottawa business?  If so, we are here to help you move to the latest server technology or maybe even a cloud solution.  Give our team of Ottawa Microsoft server experts a call today at (613) 828-1280 or email us at and we can help you plan and migrate from Windows Server 2003.

I have a strong passion for helping Ottawa Businesses, Entrepreneurs and professionals to become more productive and successful while allowing them to feel at ease and secure when it comes to their Information Technology needs. As the President of Fuelled Networks since 1998, I specialize in providing no-nonsense flawless and prompt technical support to Ottawa businesses, with in-depth consulting on Fortinet, Microsoft, Microsoft Cloud Stack and security. I strive to help businesses to succeed and take great pride in building long-lasting positive relationships and taking on a strong leadership role within the Ottawa community.

Published On: 9th October 2013 by Ernie Sherman.