Windows Server 2003 End of Life: Best Practices for Getting Across the Finish Line


windows-server-2003-eol-turtleWindows Server 2003 R2 has been in service for almost 13 years now, and the clock is ticking for transformation – primarily the imminent end of support date: July 14, 2015. However, there are many organizations still running on Windows Server 2003 that will be adversely affected after the final end of extended support date.

What Does it Mean?

After the July 14th date, the primary threat will be that Microsoft will no longer release updates for Windows Server 2003, resulting in operational challenges and security vulnerabilities. Windows Server Microsoft released 37 critical updates in 2013 for Windows Server 2003 – without these critical updates, vulnerabilities will emerge as security and compliance frameworks will not be regularly serviced and updated. Especially for industries with specific regulatory requirements, this could even cause your organization to fall out of standard compliance regulations.

The change will affect both physical and virtualized servers, and ultimately will lead to increased operations costs as well as discontinued support for many applications supported by Windows Server 2003.

Best Practice Strategy

Microsoft and its partners have established several best practice strategies for ensuring a smooth and comprehensive migration strategy to upgrade systems and workflows on Windows Server 2003. Organizations can also take advantage of SADA Systems’ free 2-4 day assessment to engage Microsoft experts in business planning sessions and receive a custom-made roadmap and action plan.

Watch the video below for a comprehensive overview of the following best practices:

  1. Discover what you have: Catalog your software and workloads

  2. Assess your inventory: Categorize applications and workloads by type, criticality, and complexity/risk in order to highlight mission-critical priorities

  3. Target your destination and upgrade to the appropriate platform

    1. Windows Server 2012

    2. Microsoft Azure

    3. Cloud OS Network

    4. Office 365 – Sharepoint, Exchange



SADA Systems, a Microsoft National Solutions Provider, specializes in strategies for migrating users from platforms like Windows Server 2003 to more modern platforms, with standardized processes for categorizing and cataloging workflows as well as completing migration tasks, remediating legacy apps and answering the many questions that arise – What is the application compatibility? Is there an upgrade path available? Are core changes required for migration?
Ultimately, your destination target will be driven by factors such as speed, ease of migration, costs, and desired functionality.

Click below or contact our team at for a free 2-4 day assessment to evaluate your current Windows 2003 Environment, including interactive business impact planning sessions and a custom-made roadmap and action plan.

Windows Server 2003 EOL Assessment

Is Office 365 Just Office in the Cloud?

Microsoft Office 365 eBook

Short answer: No—it's so much more! Learn how Office 365 adds security, mobility and speed to processes. This eBook will explain how combining familiar tools with powerful additions like Power BI, OneNote, and OneDrive can help your business manage and tackle more tasks.

Download the

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>