SQL Server 2005 end of life is coming, run to the hills...

Actually people, don't panic, you've still got 364 days

Microsoft has reminded folk selling and managing IT that another support expiry deadline is looming — SQL Server 2005 goes end of life in roughly twelve months.

As of 12 April 2016, Microsoft will no longer provide updates or any form of support unless a business is willing to pay, and those types of arrangements are never cheap.

“A year sounds like plenty of time to plan your migration, but, depending on the type of application, the migration destination, the scale of the move and resources allocated, migrations can take several months,” said T.K. Rengarajan, veep of the data platform.

SQL instances will continue to run but specifically there will be no further security updates or “hot fixes”, potentially leaving customers with system vulnerability.

Similar arguments about security were put forward when Windows XP extended support was closed in April last year and as Microsoft prepares to shutter support for Windows Server 2003.

Clearly, Microsoft wants punters to migrate to the latest and greatest software, claiming SQL Server 2014 was benchmarked to be 13 times faster than its 2005 relation, before even factoring performance gains from in-memory OLTP.

The cost of updating the wares will not be cheap, according to analysts at Forrester: it estimates a retail business with 30,000 staff and 300 SQL Server databases will need to cough $1.5m in licensing fees to shift to the 2012 or 2014 versions.

Forrester also estimates user organisations will also need to find $1.8m for training, data migration planning, and other professional services.

All in, the initial cost of migrating is estimated at north of $4m but the biz benefits are valued at $5.15m, and the payback is forecast to be in the region of nine and a half months.

SQL Server 2005 is seen as the “next big opportunity for installed base churn”, said Errol Rasit, server research guru at Gartner.

However, he warned rising server prices caused by the hike in the relative value of the dollar, the cloud and more expensive memory configurations in the latest processes were potential dampeners for physical server replacements. ®

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