Server 2003 EOS, Part 6…

2017-07-27T00:01:00+00:00 July 9th, 2015|Uncategorized|

For previous parts of this blog series, see Parts 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5.

In just a few days it will be July 14th.  And that means End Of Support (EOS) for Windows Server 2003 after more than ten years!  Mind you, I won’t be celebrating; but I might just pause a moment to think of all the critical applications and services that I’ve experienced on Server 2003 throughout the years.  And my, how times have changed since then…

Now, we know there are still some of you out there that have Server 2003 running somwhere in your datacenters, or under a desk, or on a server plastered behind a wall.  It happens.  And we are here to help you. 

So start by checking out our 4-part webinar series on how you might approach different aspects of your migration away from Server 2003, which you can finnd at these links:

If all that’s not good enough, check out Microsoft’s dedicated Server 2003 EOS site for even more detail. 

…and then send us a message from our Contact Page, and let us help you with your critical Server 2003 workloads.  We can’t wait to help you solve your Server 2003 problem and get you back into a fully-supported, modern compute and workload environment.  Talk to you soon!

Server 2003 EOS, Part 5…

2017-07-27T00:01:00+00:00 April 1st, 2015|Uncategorized|

(Please see Server 2003 EOS Parts 1, 2, 3, and 4 for background)

Wow, we’re at the end of our 4-part series of webinars about the Comfort Trap of Server 2003, and the End of Service.  We’ve covered a lot over these sessions, and shared some great insight and detail about various challenges you face — and options you have — in getting your critical services off of Server 2003.

I want to thank Avi for his help and contributions to this episode, where he brings his skills and background as a developer and application specialist to help us understand the complexities of the application space.

And while today is April fool’s day, it’s no joke that some of your critical systems may be at risk when support ends on July 14th.  Interestingly, today is 4/01 and the Server 2003 EOS is just 104 days away as I type this…

So kick up your feet and relax, and spend about 42 minutes with us.  It’s just what you need to get out of the Comfort Trap!

By the way, our other sessions can be seen here:

Thanks to all that attended the live webinars!  We’ll keep you posted on future items and events, and look forward to hearing from you…

 

Server 2003 EOS, Part 3…

2017-07-27T00:01:00+00:00 February 12th, 2015|Uncategorized|

(Please see Server 2003 EOS, Part 1, and Part 2 for background)

Well, folks, now the Server 2003 EOS is just 153 days away as I type this in early February…  And don’t tell me you’re still running Exchange 2003 or 2007 on that Server 2003, are you?!?

Well, it’s a good thing that Chris Shalda and I just finished presenting the second part of our 4-part webinar series, “The Windows Server 2003 Comfort Trap”.   Part 2 is all about Exchange, and you can watch it embedded below in this page or directly here.  Chris goes into pretty good detail about why you should be concerned about EOS and your Exchange server, and some tips and approaches to help you get started in preparing.  

So grab some popcorn and cocoa, and watch the movie!  It’s about 40 minutes long, and could be the first step in helping you out of the Comfort Trap!

Update: Also, the other Sessions can be seen here:

Thanks to all that attended the live webinar!  And for those that stuck with us even though we had some audio difficulties at the beginning.  😉

In the upcoming sessions in this series, we’ll be bringing on more special guests from Coretek to tell their stories and give great insight.  I know I’m looking forward to it!  See you then…

 

Server 2003 EOS, Part 2…

2017-07-27T00:01:00+00:00 January 28th, 2015|Uncategorized|

(Please see Server 2003 EOS, Part 1 for background)

Well, folks, the Server 2003 EOS is just 167 days away as I type this in late January…  What is the “EOS” you ask?  I’m glad you asked…

I just finished presenting the first part of our 4-part webinar series, “The Windows Server 2003 Comfort Trap”.  Part 1 is called “Foundations”, and you can watch it at this link, and its also embedded below in this page. I go into pretty good detail about what the EOS is, why you should be concerned, and some tips and approaches to help you get started in preparing.  

So grab some popcorn and cocoa, and watch the movie!  It’s only about 33 minutes long, and might just be your first step in getting yourself out of the Comfort Trap!

Update: By the way, the other Session can now also be seen here:

Thanks to all that attended the live webinar!  And thanks to all those that pointed out that I have the wrong date in the first slide… I promise to have that fixed for the next session.  😉

Speaking of which, in the upcoming sessions in this series, we’ll be bringing on other special guests from Coretek to tell their stories and give great insight into the areas which are their strengths.  I know I’m looking forward to it!  See you then…

 

Server 2003 EOS, Part 1.

2017-07-27T00:01:00+00:00 December 16th, 2014|Uncategorized|

As you surely know, the Microsoft Windows Server 2003 family is quickly approaching its End of Service (EOS) date. 

Side note: Coretek is absolutely ramped-up and ready to assist you in your migration to Server 2012 R2 (on-premises or Cloud-based), including the possibility of Microsoft funding for assessment and other exciting options.  But that’s not why I’m writing today….

Like the XP EOS frenzy early this year, these big-impact EOS timeframes end up causing some strange feelings for your friendly neighborhood server technician.  What I mean is, as a consultant, I spend a great deal of my time staying current on bleeding-edge technologies and building automations to eliminate manual installs and deployments, etc.

But today, I needed to test some odd behavior I discovered in preparation for an application migration, and I actually had to perform a manual install of Server 2003 — that’s right, manual — for the first time in what must be years.  And because of that, I’m suddenly awash in memories of where I was all those years ago.

But you’re wondering, why a manual installation?  Well just to clarify, I’ve long-since deleted all my VMM templates for Server 2003, or any VHDs that I might have had lying around to “hydrate” and test.  I searched, trust me.  So for this particular test-bed, on this particular evening, I figured it was just quicker to attach the the old CD-sized ISO to the virtual DVD drive, and on I went through that old blue initial setup screen. 

And then it hit me…  What was different about my life the last time I saw and walked through this setup screen? 

It must’ve been around mid-2008, I’m thinking, based on my memory of the day.  I think I recall the situation correctly — I had a different president, different employer, different car, different family arrangement, and on and on…  Basically a very different life.  I guess this setup screen is a bit like a time capsule of memories, like an old song that brings back a day long forgotten.  Or maybe I’m just melancholy as the holidays approach…

You know what else I had forgotten all about?  That “continue on CD #2” thing.  Remember that?  And Hyper-V issues like not having the mouse integrations, having to ctrl+alt+left-arrow all the time, and needing “integration Services” installed manually before it can communicate.  Ah, how quaint.

Will I ever walk through the blue setup screen again?  Surely; after all, I’ll probably be setting up some test beds for other folks like me who long-ago deleted deployment images and templates for Server 2003.  But I’ll tell you one thing, the next time I do the install, it will be for building a template in my VMM lab so I don’t have to do it again. 

Server 2003 might be antiquated and End of Service, but at least I can pull it forward into the future kicking and screaming just enough to help hasten its demise. 

😉

 

XP EOS D-9… And Counting…

2017-07-27T00:01:02+00:00 March 30th, 2014|Uncategorized|

It’s Monday.  The last day of March.  Forget the fact that tomorrow is April Fool’s Day.  The Windows XP “End of Service” date is now only 9 days away! 

Before reading on, it might be a good idea to reference my post from last month, “XP Elimination — The looming crush…” and “XP EOS M-9… And Counting…

Now that you’ve caught up on those previous articles, let’s spend a moment catching up on our 3 semi-fictitious companies and see how they are doing.

Organization “A” – What, me worry?

For our fictitious Organization “A”, things are actually getting better – at a price, that is.  You see, they realized they had no hope of making the deadline, and decided to throw buckets of money at the problem.  They brought in consultants, vendors, and staff leaders, and locked them in a room with a blank checkbook.  The 20,000 XP machines are rapidly becoming 7000 or so machines and dropping.  It’s “getting done”, but in a very “machine gun” style that doesn’t lend itself well to on-going management or future enhancements and upgrades.  This just means that after this checkbook is empty, they’ll be setting up for Round 2, in preparation for the next generation.  If they had gotten underway earlier, they could have had at least *some* of the tools and infrastructure in place to carry forward…  But, no…

Organization “B” – Nope.  We don’t wanna.

Well, Organization “B” is now partially integrated into Organization “C”.  They’re not going to make the deadline, I’m afraid; but because Organization “C” is so ruthlessly efficient, they are at least documenting the environment, planning the on-going integration, and actually deploying some elements of the extended infrastructure.  They still have most of the 40,000 XP workstations to get to, but the future looks better.  They’ve got fingers crossed that no calamity will befall them over the next few months as they catch up, and they are considering an alternate (expensive) support strategy.  It’s about the best they can do, given their previous situation.

Organization “C” – The best-laid plans…

For the original Organization “C” side of the C/B acquisition, things actually look pretty good.  Across the infrastructure, there are still a few thousand XP machines – but most of these are documented and/or isolated, or about to be replaced shortly.  It’s down to the wire!  But we can finally say that they’ve booked their project completion dinner party reservations.  Congratulations!  But keep at it with Organization B… 

Organization “D” – Yeah?  So?

Since my last post, I met Organization “D”.   Nice folks; smart too.  But they simply cannot afford to care about the deadline.   After a string of financial hardships, org changes, and so forth, they are only now making enough headway to think they’ll survive.  As a result of the hard past, they are only now putting their heads up for air and exploring option of how to get them from “here” to “there”.  They are numb from the scars of the economy, and they don’t see this XP EOS challenge any differently than the past challenges; they will run headlong into it, and take the blows.  They will come out the other end, but only with more scars.

Honestly, some of these stories are heartbreaking, while others are inspiring.  And mind you, I worked through the 2000 bubble like many of you, so you’d think I’d be less moved by the trials that these folks are going though.  But this one is different.  It didn’t make the news the same way (at least in the build-up), but it hits real folks where it hurts.  And we at Coretek are doing our absolute best to help those that we can, as quickly and effeciently — and as prudently — as we can. 

So good luck, hang in there, and we’ll all be watching the clock tick down to the final day.  And we’ll see you on the other side of the XP EOS…

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XP EOS M-9… And Counting…

2017-07-27T00:01:03+00:00 July 17th, 2013|Uncategorized|

The Windows XP “End of Service” date is now only 9 months away!  Well, we’re actually just beyond 9-month mark now, but you get the point.

Before reading on, it might be a good idea to reference my post from last month, “XP Elimination — The looming crush…

If you think it’s ridiculous or hilarious that anyone should be concerned about migrating off of XP at this point, then you probably work in a small-to-medium sized company.  You might even be able to consider upgrading all the workstations by yourself (or with a buddy), or maybe you’ve just replaced all the computers with modern devices with updated OS’s.  Easy-peasy.

But many *large* enterprise company/organizations are watching the clock (or should be) for that looming April 8th deadline, for a variety of reasons.  And this is what I really wanted to touch on today — the fact that steering the massive enterprise can be like steering the largest ship in an ocean, but there are other factors to consider in the metaphorical ocean as well.  Like icebergs…  Like other, older ships that require rescuing… 

Okay, I’ve worn out the metaphor, so let’s start discussing some specifics.  Let’s look at the examples of three, ahem, *fictitious* example large organizations that have arrived at three different XP situations.

Organization “A” – What, me worry?

For our fictitious Organization “A”, things are smooth sailing.  Or so they think.  They’ve got only 20,000 XP machines, and they’ve set up a test pilot bed of about 50 Windows 7 machines, and it’s going well.  Well, *that* part’s going well.  What they will soon realize is that their back-end infrastructure isn’t prepared (in design nor scale) for the type of load that their Win7 deployment strategy calls for — and they have only just begun to prepare their applications for re-packaging.  But they aren’t worried.  Well, not as much as they should be, anyway.

Organization “B” –  Nope.  We don’t wanna.

Organization “B” doesn’t have a plan.  It’s not that they don’t have a clue, it’s just that they mostly don’t care.  They have 40,000 workstations, a bunch of old servers, and so on, in a complicated, aging infrastructure.  You see, things don’t really look good for the business end of the company in this age of consolidation, and most folks think they’ll be acquired anyway.  So XP is fine for now.  I guess.  Whatever.

Organization “C” – The best-laid plans…

For Organization “C”, they really have been doing it right.  They jumped in front of the project, and designed/prepared/deployed a sturdy, modern back-end infrastructure.  They rallied the troops and started the application re-packaging very early-on and devised a “just-in-time” strategy to manage application-to-user/workstation tracking and roll out the workstations right behind the infrastructure and apps.  The working schedule seems to indicate that all of their 50,000 workstations should be upgraded/re-deployed right around the the April 8th deadline.  Whew!  It looks like they’re going to make it!  Until…  Uh-oh…  Did we mention that Organization “C” just acquired Organization “B”? 

While these are hypothetical scenarios, I will be re-visiting these imaginary companies over the next few months as we approach the XP EOS date, discussing some of the finer points of their challenges along the way…  Let’s wish them all luck, shall we? 

😉