Upcoming Support Transitions for Windows 2003 and Windows Server 2008

The past couple of months have been very busy for the Support Lifecycle team…  Unfortunately, due to other commitments, I haven’t had an opportunity to post to the blog in quite some time.  It’s been great to receive the friendly prodding for a new post from folks who had previously been regular readers of the blog.   I’ll do my best to get back to a regular posting rhythm over the next couple of weeks.  I’ve also invited other members of the Support Lifecycle team to join-in and occasionally post.  This should help ensure that we keep a regular posting cadence.  Thanks to everyone for their continued interest and all of the reminders!

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In today’s post, I want to highlight important upcoming support transitions for Windows 2003 Server, Windows 2003 Professional, and Windows Server 2008.

All editions of Windows 2003 Server and Windows 2003 Professional will reach the end of the Extended Support phase on July 13, 2010.  After this date, Windows 2003 will no longer be publicly supported.  This means that Microsoft will no longer provide any assisted support and will no longer provide security updates for this product.  Self-Help Online Support (including the knowledge base and other articles on http://support.microsoft.com) will continue to be available for a minimum of 12 months after this date.

This means that customers only have another 1.5 years to complete their migrations away from Windows 2003.  If you haven’t already started to plan your migrations, I’d recommend considering this fairly soon.  You don’t want to get caught in a situation where you’re still running Windows 2003 for a critical application and not be eligible for any type of support.

Additionally, all editions of Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server 2008 R2 will transition from the Mainstream Support phase to the Extended Support phase on July 13, 2010.  These products will continue to be publicly supported in the Extended Support phase through July 14, 2015.  Please keep in mind that customers without Software Assurance, who wish to enroll for Extended Hotfix Support, must do so within 90 days of the end of Mainstream Support.

This is probably also a good time to remind everyone that Windows XP is also transitioning to the Extended Support phase on April 14, 2009.

Each of these support transitions are follow the Support Lifecycle policy and have previously been announced.  In most cases, I hope this information doesn’t come as a surprise.

Next time, I’ll explain a little more about our Extended Hotfix Support program for DST.  If you have any other topic suggestions, or any general policy questions that you’d like addressed on the blog, please let us know!

*This posting is provided “AS IS” with no warranties, and confers no rights.*