This year marks the end of life for Microsoft SQL Server 2005. Remember Query Analyzer? Enterprise Manager? In the dark times before BIDS and the Visual Studio shell we called Management Studio emerged, we had to manage and develop the database using a crude form of an MMC snap-in and a text editor whose power rivaled that of WordPad.
SQL Server 2005 EOL – What does it mean?
SQL Server 2005 has been around for over 10 years. When it became Generally Available (GA) in November 2005 it was a major version post SQL Server 2000. As of April 2016 the product lifecycle has come to an end. However, that doesn’t mean that installations everywhere will be upgraded. Indeed, many will stay right where they are.
Basically what this means is:
- No more hotfixes and security updates from Microsoft – staying put means possible compliance issues with auditors taking issue with unsupported production systems having potential security issues
- Since you’re probably running SQL 2005 on Windows Server 2003 you’ve got bigger problems because that went out of support on July 15, 2015. Plan to transition applications ASAP
- At the very least get on SP4 right away
Life Past SQL Server 2005 – What now?
There are a few good choices for migrating from SQL 2005:
- Azure (hosted or hybrid)
- SQL 2016 – it doesn’t make much sense moving up to any version short of 2016. SQL Server 2016 represents a major change while the others in between 2005 and 2016 are more minor releases. Seems fitting then to go from the last major release to the current major release.
- Do nothing – Consider the above risks of inaction. Know that new security threats will not be patched.