According to the reports from the experts, software giant Microsoft is going to end its support for Windows Server 2003 from July 14, 2015. It is remarkable that the OS was Microsoft’s first ultra-successful server operating system released before 12 years. But now, it is about to retire within a period of less than next six months.
We know that all software products have a definite life-cycle. According to a previous data, there were around 12 million physical servers running on Windows Server 2003 as of July 2014. But now, the end of support means Microsoft will stop providing automatic fixes, updates, or online technical assistance for the Windows Server 2003 OS.
After this period, this product will no longer receive:
Security patches that help protect PCs from harmful viruses, spy ware, and other malicious software
Assisted technical support from Microsoft
Software and content updates
There is bound to be an adverse effect of this on computer systems which will still continue to use unsupported software after this deadline. They are bound to face enhanced risk to cyber security dangers like malicious attacks or electronic data loss.
Usage of unsupported software may result in increased risk of viruses and other security threats. Moreover, the adverse impact may extend up to the loss of confidentiality, integrity, and or availability of data, system resources and business assets.
If you are still running Windows Server 2003 in your data center, you need to take steps now to plan and execute a migration strategy to protect your infrastructure. You can choose to migrate to Windows Server 2012 R2, Microsoft Azure or Office 365 and receive multiple benefits like improved performance, reduced maintenance requirements, and increased agility and speed of response to the business.
The best advice to overcome this security threat is to plan and execute a migration strategy right now in order to protect your IT infrastructure. There are software vendors and service providers in the market who provide assistance in migrating from Windows Server 2003 to a currently supported operating system.
At present, it seems unlikely that everyone will be able to make it up by the given July deadline. However, Microsoft suggests its customers to shift their servers to the cloud platform, specially the Redmond, Wash company’s Azure cloud-based platform before the deadline.
Anyway, as a personal suggestion, we advise our clients to “prioritize” and upgrade those servers first, which have the maximum security risk to the business. We at AccuWebHosting offers its premium web hosting plans for you to switch over to them and there by opt for a great replacement for the end of support for Windows Server 2003.
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Rahul is CEO at AccuWebHosting.com. He shares his web hosting insights at AccuWebHosting blog. He mostly writes on the latest web hosting trends, WordPress, storage technologies, Windows and Linux hosting platforms.