Risks of running on Windows Server 2003 and what you can do



 

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Source- https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/e2/Windows_Server_2003_logo_and_wordmark.svg

 

Despite Microsoft’s complete pulling of support from Windows Server 2003, there are still 600,000 computers hosting millions of websites online from this antiquated server.

 

This translates to millions of websites being hosted on a server that is not receiving system updates or security gap updates of any kind, effectively opening these servers to a highly elevated risk of a security breach like a malicious attack or potential data loss.

 

As there are about 175 million websites being hosted from Windows server 2003, about a good fifth of the internet’s websites will be at risk.

 

What can you do if you’re in the 175 million?

 

If your website is within this huge figure, don’t panic, your 32 bit system can be migrated, so if you’re only just considering this migration, here’s a few tips to look into before migrating.

 

1)      Inventory that would be affected by a migration

Begin this process by creating a log that includes everything that a migration to a different server would affect or involve. This includes the checking of whether or not drivers and server software would be supported on a different version of Windows Server.

 

2)      Brainstorm on how a migration would work with different servers

As different servers are more beneficial than others to some companies, it is highly recommended to do research to find out how you can migrate to the best server for you. Sequence the migration to include specific, plannable actions for processes like Active Directory as well as Exchange Server.

 

3)      Consider a hardware overhaul

No one likes to spend money on something that doesn’t tangibly improve their way of doing things. Unfortunately, in this situation, upgrading your hardware from a 32 bit processing system is probably the only course of action if you want a physical server. There are also many more benefits to upgrading your hardware other than simply migrating to a different server.

 

4)      After evaluating servers, look especially at Windows Server R2

As stated by Microsoft, they will hopefully provide support for this server all the way up to at least 2020. We definitely recommend not going as far back as using the 2008 version as the extended support is all that is available to these server users and that won’t last much longer either.

 

5)      After deciding on server, back up your current server

To make sure your migration goes without a hitch, it is highly recommended to back up your data so that no catastrophes occur. There are many third party tools that can do this for you by creating a disk image and restore your data on either new hardware or old.

 

6)      Use imaging to make the migration go as quickly as possible

Create a master image of the server and it becomes easy to paste that image into multiple systems at the same time. Third party tools have to be used to create such an image.

 

And that’s it, you’re finally, begin executing the migration process. With your data is now backed up while using other tools to procure a master image, you’re ready to migrate. This may sound like an oversimplification of the process and it indeed is. If you’re looking to find more information on this topic drop us a line or shoot us a message and we’d love you talk about training you on this or handling it all for you. Whatever you do, don’t sit happy with Windows Sever 2003 as the dangerous implications of doing so will only increase as the time goes by.

 

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