Softline Group Northern Europe // Knowledge Base // Blog post

End of support Microsoft SQL Server 2008/2008 R2 and Windows Server 2008/2008 R2

On January 14, 2020, the extended support for Microsoft Windows Server 2008/2008 R2 will end.  For SQL Server 2008/2008 R2, this will already end on July 9, 2019. 

So, for these versions, there will no longer be any feature and security updates after the end of the support period.

Figure: Support end Microsoft SQL Server 2008/2008 R2 and Windows Server 2008/2008 R2 (Source:

What are the risks for your company?

Risk 1: Security

After the extended support period expires, there no longer are patches or security updates available for your applications, exposing them to serious security risks.

Risk 2: Compliance

Every software manufacturer has its own compliance guidelines. The continued use of active software without security updates carries the risk of incompliance.

Which options of redesign are there?

Basically, there are three ways of redesigning:

Option 1: Innovation - Migration to Azure

Use the end of extended support as an opportunity to upgrade to new technologies such as Microsoft Azure. Migrate existing workloads directly to Azure and continue to use existing licenses. Through active Software Assurance, you can utilise the so-called "Hybrid Use Benefit" in Microsoft Azure. Depending on the edition (Standard or Datacenter), you can upload your own Windows Server image to Microsoft Azure.

Your advantages when migrating to Microsoft Azure:

  • 3 years of free extended security updates
  • Easy installation and maintenance in your own data center
  • Highest security and compliance standards
  • Possibility of hybrid scenarios

Option 2: Migrate to a current version

Active Software Assurance or the purchase of new licenses allows you to migrate to a more recent version. We especially recommend this for data that you cannot or may not migrate to the cloud and that you still need to run on premise due to constraints or incompatibility.

Option 3: Use on-premise updates

If both options are not a possibility for you, there is a third and last alternative. You can purchase security updates for a maximum of 3 more years. This is possible since March 1, 2019 and applies to the versions 2008 and 2008 R2.

Recommended procedure

1. Analyse and evaluate the current situation

Identify all services running in Windows Server 2008/2008 R2 and SQL Server 2008/2008 R2, and analyse and evaluate these for business needs and version dependencies.

2.  Decision making and migration support

Are you spoiled for choice: to migrate to Azure or switch to a more recent version? We are happy to assist you with the analysis of possible scenarios and evaluate them together with you, in order to find the optimal solution for your applications and your business.

3. Optimise

To improve security and compliance for hybrid workloads, we recommend centralised management such as Microsoft System Center, so you can manage and optimise your resources and save costs.

Do you have any questions about the end of support for Windows Server and SQL Server or need support in the migration of services to the cloud? Or are you interested to know which other software will be end-of-life soon? We are happy to answer your questions and help you.

Softline Group Northern Europe | Tags: Microsoft, SQL Server 2008/ 2008 R2, Microsoft Azure, Windows Server 2008/ 2008 R2, Compliance