Are you still running SQL Server 2005? Now is the time to upgrade to a modern data platform

Are you still running SQL Server 2005? We know it’s hard to let go, but it’s been 10 years. In its time SQL Server 2005 was a great choice for your departmental and mid-market IT needs. Over the last decade, Microsoft has continued to invest and SQL Server has evolved to be an enterprise-class solution to support your growing business needs. If you haven’t yet moved on to take advantage of these capabilities, now is the time to start planning.

After 10 great years, extended support for all versions of SQL Server 2005 is coming to an end on April 12, 2016. A year sounds like plenty of time to plan your migration, but, depending on the type of application, the migration destination, the scale of the move and resources allocated, migrations can take several months. In addition to SQL Server 2005, you may have heard that support for Windows Server 2003 is ending soon. As you plan your SQL Server migration, you should also plan your infrastructure migration to get the most out of our modern platform. Planning now will ensure that you are able to make the move in time and Microsoft is here to help you in that process.

First, it is important that you know what end of support means for your business. While SQL Server 2005 instances will continue to run, after the end of support date Microsoft will no longer provide hotfixes or security updates. Additionally, the benefits of upgrading to a modern data platform far outweigh the costs of maintaining security, support and compliance for an unsupported database.

Upgrading is not just a maintenance task, but an opportunity to provide new value to your business. Moving to SQL Server 2014 or Azure SQL Database enables you to achieve breakthrough performance:

  • SQL Server 2014 has been benchmarked to be 13 times faster than SQL Server 2005, before the additional performance gains available from in-memory OLTP.
  • AlwaysOn availability groups provide more reliable High Availability.
  • Together with Windows Server 2012 R2 you can scale up across compute, networking and storage.
  • New tools in SQL Server Management Studio provide an easy on-ramp to cloud to help you get more from your data platform investment.

You can read more about the benefits to planning for SQL Server 2005 and Windows Server 2003 end of support now. And learn about the quick ROI of SQL Server 2012 and 2014 in a study Microsoft commissioned with Forrester on the Total Economic Impact of SQL Server – read the full study or watch the webinar.

Over the next year, the team will post a series of blogs around SQL Server 2005 end of support and information to help you in your upgrade path including topics on the process of upgrading, tools available to help you upgrade, migration destination guidance and more.

To help you get started, Microsoft has put together several tools and resources to prepare for your upgrade:

SQL Server

Discover: Determine which applications are running on SQL Server 2005 and make the case for an upgrade.

Target: Choose a migration on destination for each application whether on-premises, virtualized or in the cloud.

Upgrade: Plan your upgrade, whether you do it yourself or collaborate with a partner.

For more information on SQL Server 2005 end of support, visit us at

Learn more about how Microsoft customers are already benefiting from upgrading and migrating to SQL Server 2014:

  • Stack Overflow uses SQL Server 2014 to provide reliable, high-performing technology to support its mission of providing lightning fast answers online.
  • Samsung Electro-Mechanics improved OLTP performance up to 24 times and DW up to 22 times when they upgraded to SQL Server 2014.
  • GE Healthcare delivers applications to healthcare providers worldwide using SQL Server 2014 and Microsoft Azure.
  • Callaway Golf reduced cost and improved scalability by moving servers to the cloud.