There aren’t many places where you won’t overhear Windows customers airing their woes about having to upgrade from some product or the other. So, I was listening because it was unavoidable. Most IT organizations are apparently well into the process of moving out of Windows Server 2003, and seem to have their bearings in hand. But there are others still hanging back, and then those that never found out they could upgrade.
The problem is a serious one for these last two groups. It’s not much use having a patched computer, if it’s running on an unpatched server. This could spell disaster in a corporate environment, because company data is out on the server, which connects the employees in the office. This is exactly what Windows Server 2003 laggards will have to deal with post July 14, 2015. That’s the official EOS date, when security updates will stop coming in from Microsoft. No part of this is funny.
Most vendors provide help with Windows Server 2003 migration. It’s not like you’ll be getting only Windows help, as long as you’re looking in the right places. There are others who will be affected, and so it’s logical that someone came up with a way to ease the transition, even for you.
And while we’re on the topic, there actually is official Windows help available from the parent company. Microsoft has come out with a new Migration Planning Assistant for Windows Server 2003. It’s basically an online platform where you can project your migration plan and make sure you use the proper resources while crossing over. Users get to understand what provisions the current server holds, and what they’ll need to move to the new one. The migration destination is set before the migration kicks off, which the tool helps you with.
The four step process lets you “discover”, “assess”, “target”, and “migrate”. You get to appraise your workloads on the current server, and generate summarized report which recommends the ideal offering from a Microsoft partner. The workload gets categorized among the following classes: File Server, Web Server, Active Directory, Terminal Services, and Application Sever.
If you’re an IT organization and already have the whole migration process well in hand, you might know someone who can find good use of the Migration Planning Assistant. Pass it along, in keeping with the peer spirit which set IT companies apart.