hybrid environment

I currently have Windows 2003 Server on our domain controller and SQL server 2008.  All our clients are Windows 7.  We are upgrading our SQL box.  The question I have is if we upgrade the SQL box to Windows 2008 or 2012, will that become an issue if we leave the domain controller as a 2003 Server.   Does it allow a hybrid enironment?  

Is there any benefit also to upgrading to SQL 2012?

To me, it seems like these upgrades are unnecessary and maybe we should just stick to our old 2003 Server with SQL 2008.

Your thoughts on the matter are appreciated!
al4629740Asked:
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Racim BOUDJAKDJIDatabase Architect - Dba - Data ScientistCommented:
Better Performance is not primarily obtained by version upgrade but by better hosting infrastructure (IO and CPU resources) and applicative design (indexing).  Don't waste time on upgrade and focus your efforts onto these aspects.

Hope this helps.
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didnthaveanameCommented:
So here's my outlook. While there certainly are performance enhancements in the major sql releases, if you don't have performance issues with your current version and you don't need the new features, why spend the money? New  toys are great, I love to play with them, but there has to be a business justification. Features-wise, here are some of the top features: http://mcpmag.com/articles/2012/03/14/top-12-features-of-sql-server-2012.aspx?m=1 (and don't get me wrong, availability groups alone were the reason my company decided to upgrade, but not everyone needs that). In terms of the OS... You are *absolutely* going to see performance improvements from upgrading there.  You're talking about an OS that is a decade old and is going to be end of lifed in 1-2years.  Especially if you're contemplating a virtualized sql server. And you're fine with joining a server 2012 machine to a 2003 forest/domain level.
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Racim BOUDJAKDJIDatabase Architect - Dba - Data ScientistCommented:
If you don't need high availability and some new features mentioned above, there is no point for you to upgrade.  Just make sure you got your latest service packs installed to have support.
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al4629740Author Commented:
I do need better performance because many queries are not pulling up fast
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