July 14th 2015 will see the end of support for Microsoft Server 2003, the first operating system launched after the Trustworthy Computing initiative over twelve years ago. 

According to Microsoft, the end of Windows Server 2003 is an opportunity for a new beginning. It’s been coming for a long time. Whilst many smaller businesses as well as larger enterprises have already upgraded to a newer server or successfully migrated to cloud platforms such as Azure, Microsoft is urging that those still using Windows Server 2003 embrace change and aim to modernise. 

Although instances of the 2003 server will continue to run, they will be unsupported and therefore could pose a significant security risk. Last October, Gartner carried out an independent risk assessment outlining the risks and its recommendations for businesses. Despite risks being made clear in advance of the date by both Microsoft and Gartner, it can be hard for budget-conscious executives to swallow the costs of updating – leaving their infrastructure vulnerable in the long run. 

The costs of running a legacy server without regular updates to fix bugs and tackle performance issues will only increase maintenance costs as the system continues to age. It is also crucial for businesses to keep up with compliance standards in order to remain competitive and avoid penalties. 

The change from Windows Server 2003 to a new operating system is not just a maintenance task. Rather, it is a timely chance to adopt new solutions in line with evolving technology – solutions that are compatible with new, mobile-connected applications and innovations – ultimately delivering increased value for money. It’s a better time than ever to move away from traditional infrastructure and plan for the future. 

Back in 2003, we could have had little concept of how widespread the use of smartphones and mobile apps would become. Today, operations can be carried out remotely, in real-time. Business stands to benefit further from increased flexibility and efficiency with modern platforms such as Windows Server 2012 R2, Office 365, Azure and the Cloud OS Network. As these are highly scalable, they are well suited to both larger and smaller organisations. 

The average timescale for migration is 200 days. Click here for Trustmarque’s top tips for successful preparation. You can get in touch with us here.