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Upgrade from Windows Server 2008 R2 to 2014

Posted on 2015-01-07
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Hello

We are needing to replace our Server Hardware and the IT are telling us that we need to upgrade from Windows Server 2008 R2 to Windows Server 2012.
Which of course means an additional 5K of Software (Do they get a Commission?)

The Question is - Do we NEED to upgrade?
What are the Advantages?

We have 25 Users and all they use is an accounting system (That runs on SQL Server) and Outlook with the occasional Excel and Word Document.

Would 2012 be Significantly Faster for the Users?
(A Lot of what I see about the Advantages are for the IT Guys in Setup and Administration)

Thanks
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Question by:p-plater
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Don S. earned 668 total points
ID: 40536716
2012 is not significantly different in performance from 2008 for your purposes.  However, upgrading the version of SQL server can reap big performance gains (if your software supports it).  Also newer, faster hardware with more memory will obviously run your SQL server based accounting software faster.  But, if your users are not experiencing any lag in their accounting system, then any upgrades will not be very noticeable.  All that said, you WILL need to upgrade this server in the next few years as server 2008 has just reached it's end of mainstream support (that means it will not be getting any more features, enhancements or service packs - only security related updates) and will hit it's end of extended support in January of 2020.  It's just a matter of when you want to upgrade.
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by:Sabi Goraya
Sabi Goraya earned 668 total points
ID: 40536910
Server 2008 R2is just one version prior to Server 2012.
I don't see the reason to upgrade.

See the link below for Server 2008 R2 Life cycle provided by Microsoft.
http://support2.microsoft.com/lifecycle/search/default.aspx?sort=PN&alpha=windows+server+2008+r2&Filter=FilterNO 

Will it be fast:
Server 2012 or Server 2008 will not make a difference, what matters is the network and the server Hardware. Server 2012 will be same as 2008R2 if on a week server

SQL is a night mare for many admins because they can find the cause of the lag and think that an upgrade will fix it.

Most of the problems are caused due to slow hardware and particularly due to low RPM Hard drives.
Can you post your current server configuration along with details of the raid and Hard drive Speed.
Thanks
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by:VB ITS
VB ITS earned 664 total points
ID: 40537089
Unless the license for Server 2008 R2 is an OEM license (which means you can't transfer it to the new servers), I don't think it is necessary to upgrade to Server 2012/2012 R2.

Yes, Server 2008 R2 will be out of mainstream support relatively soon, but extended support expires in 2020. Confirmation for the support lifecycle for 2008 R2 can be found in the link Sabi posted above.

It's also worth noting that Server 2008 R2 Standard has a maximum memory limit of 32GB, whereas in Server 2012 the limit is 4TB. This means if your new server hardware has umpteen amounts of RAM, 2008 R2 Standard won't be able to make full use of it should you want to assign more than 32GB.

There's also the fact that the accounting software may not even be supported in Server 2012 as well, so you'll need to check with the vendor first before doing anything else. In some cases you may have to upgrade the software to the latest version, which may incur additional fees and add even more to the overall cost of the project.
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Expert Comment

by:Cliff Galiher
ID: 40537148
VB ITS hit on an important point though. Small deployments (25 users definitely qualify) are often OEM licensed. If that's the case. 2008 R2 is no longer in the sales channel, so a new server would indeed require an upgrade to 2012 R2 just by the nature of what is currently in the channel and the restrictions on OEM licensing. Ultimately the relationship with your IT provider is about partnership based on trust. After all, they often have the keys to the kingdom in regards to domain admin passwords, router, VPN, remote access... if you are second guessing their wisdom that you must upgrade, you should probably bring in another IT firm for a legitimate second opinion where they can audit your hardware and licenses. A random opinion on the internet with no background is a tough way to justify distrusting your current partnership.
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