Stop the SQL Server 2008 panic!

By Sean
17th January 2019

Upgrades and migration are not the only way forward.

With Microsoft officially retiring one of its most commonly installed SQL Server products and ending any support or further security patches for SQL Server 2008 and 2008 R2, companies are left with what appears to be the only available solution: upgrade their SQL Server Database.

This is, in fact, Microsoft’s recommendation.

However, not all businesses are in immediate need of changing their current software version. If you are considering your options, here are a few reasons why you might not want to change, at least not yet:

  • Your application runs perfectly fine on this version and you don’t have time to run the required testing for an upgrade.
  • Upgrades require possible downtime. This might cause disruption to the business, without bringing an immediate benefit.
  • You do not have the in-house expertise required to carry out this upgrade.
  • You own the hardware that runs 2008. In this specific case, a newer version of your Database might require new hardware, with all the related additional expenses.
  • You own the license for SQL Server 2008 and do not wish to spend on further licenses.
  • A SQL Server upgrade may be part of a larger strategy in the transformation of the business, therefore a database update is not an immediate priority.

If any of the above applies to you, you might want to hold off upgrading your SQL Server for now.

Does this mean that you would have to stay without SQL Server database support?

Not necessarily.

You should in the first instance purchase extended security updates for those systems you do not intend to upgrade or migrate to Azure for free extended security updates.

At WellData we are experienced in all versions of SQL Server from 6.5 to 2017. We do not expect our existing or new clients to upgrade and will continue to support them no matter what version of SQL Server database software they use. In fact, we can also help you understand your requirements and assist in making an informed decision on whether you need to update now or not.

But what if you do want (or need) to upgrade?

Undoubtedly there are several very valid reasons to upgrade your SQL Server:

  • An overall more efficient system, with increased speed for transactions and queries.
  • Options to move to cloud services.
  • New features available, such as scalability, real-time analytics, and mobile Business Intelligence (SQL Server 2017).
  • Cross-platform compatibility, which means that SQL Server now doesn’t cover only Windows but also Linux, Mac OS and Docker (SQL Server 2017).
  • Increased security through patches and service packs. SQL Server 2017 in particular offers a new security feature known as CLR strict security

Some of the original concerns listed above, like the lack time, the lack of in-house expertise, or the risk of downtime, might still put you off from upgrading your SQL Server Database but with the right partner, this doesn’t need to be a daunting task.

When the time is right, WellData will assist in the planning and migration to a newer, more secure and up to date version.

Contact us now for SQL server database support or to upgrade your SQL Server.


Oracle open world
Sean Rodgers

Sean Rodgers is WellData’s Commercial Director. With over 18 years of experience in database management and IT operations, Sean supervises and mentors our Database Administrators to ensure that our clients get personalised care and cutting-edge solutions for their IT requirements.

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