|16 Sep 2009||#1|
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Support for older Windows Server versions grinding to a
Microsoft has released details on upcoming support lifecycle changes for Windows 2000 Server and Windows Server 2003. For most of its software, Microsoft provides Mainstream Support, followed by Extended Support, and finishes with just Self-Help Online Support.
The company also took the time to deny rumors that there will be a Service Pack 3 for Windows Server 2003. Windows Server 2003 SP2 was released in March 2007.
For all three operating systems, July 13, 2010 is the date to mark down on your calendar for the following changes:
Extended Support for Windows 2000 Server will end and thus will no longer be publicly supported by Microsoft. Windows 2000 Server will continue to have Self-Help Online Support, which includes Knowledge Base articles, FAQs, troubleshooting tools, and other resources, for a minimum of 12 months after the product reaches the end of its support.
Windows Server 2003 and Windows Server 2003 R2 (at a supported service pack level) will move from the Mainstream Support phase to the Extended Support phase, which will end July 14, 2015. Extended Support means that:
Microsoft will continue to provide security updates and paid support
Customers will continue to have access to all security updates and Self-Help Online Support options
Non-security hotfixes developed during the Extended Support phase are only provided to customers who enroll in Extended Hotfix Support (EHS), though program and per fix fees may still apply. Customers must already have a Premier Support contract to get EHS and must enroll within the first 90 days of the Extended Support phase. Customers with Software Assurance can enroll in EHS at any time.
This upcoming date affects the only version of Windows 2000 Server as well as all the many versions of Windows Server 2003 and Windows Server 2003 R2 (including 32-bit, 64-bit, and Itanium flavors): Datacenter Edition, Enterprise Edition, Standard Edition, and Web Edition.
These changes are similar to those from April 2009, when Microsoft retired Mainstream Support for Windows XP and Office 2003. Both products are now under Extended Support and will continue to be until April 8, 2014.
Microsoft used the upcoming end date for XP support to push users to upgrade to Windows 7 and is likely going to do the same with the above date to get users to upgrade to Windows Server 2008 R2. Both Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 hit the RTM milestone in July 2009 and have been slowly trickling out to various groups since then.
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