getting it right, the first time!

Microsoft End of Support (EoS)

Windows Server 2008 / R2 and SQL Server 2008 / R2

Understanding Windows Server 2019 and SQL Server 2017 Licensing | Need for Applications Upgrade

getting it right, the first time!

End of Support | Windows Server 2008 | R2 | SQL Server 2008 | R2

Microsoft End of Support for Windows Server 2008 and SQL Server 2008 Dates

Microsoft has announced 'End of Support' dates for Windows Server 2008 including 2008 R2 and SQL Server 2008 including 2008 2008 R2 products as under.

  • Microsoft SQL Server 2008 and 2008 R2: Support Ends 09 Jul 2019
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2: Support Ends 14 Jan 2020

Managing SQL Server 2008 and Windows Server 2008 End of Support (EoS)

Envision IT can assist you in several ways in managing SQL Server 2008 and Windows Server 2008 End of Support (EoS) e.g.

  • Provide you Licensing for latest versions of SQL Server and Windows Server
  • Provide you extended support options including Azure Migration
  • Carry out implementation of newer versions of Windows Server such as Windows Server 2012, Windows 2016 or Windows Server 2019 and SQL Server 2012, 2014, 2016 or 2017. In place migration of Windows Server 2008 to 2012 is possible and in simple cases, it may take only a few hours.
  • Upgrade products and applications to make them run on the latest or chosen versions of Windows Server or SQL Server.
  • Carry out complete transformation including business process streamlining and integrating systems to align them with the requirements of the day.

Upgrade Options for Windows Server 2008 / R2 and SQL Server 2008 / R2 Upgrade before the Support Ends

Some of the upgrade options for Windows Server and SQL Server are placed below. Your particular requirements however will determine the best course of action. This requires conversations with you:

Upgrade Options for Windows Server 2008 / R2 and SQL Server 2008 / R2

Upgrade Perpetual Licenses

Typically perpetual licenses are installed on-premise or on your servers located in datacenters and server farms. When you have 'Software Assurance (SA)' attached your licenses, you will receive the upgrade as SA benefit. Otherwise, you will be required to purchase new versions of Windows Server 2019 and SQL Server 2017, as required. The licensing rules for these are explained below in the Licensing Windows Server 2019 and Licensing SQL Server 2017 sections below. While considering 'upgrade', it is important to consider other factors related to upgrade as explained in the 'Considerations for Upgrade for Windows Server 2008 / R2 and SQL Server 2008 / R2' below.

Azure Cloud Option for SQL Server 2008 Free Extended Support for 3 Years

It is a good time to consider moving your server and workloads such as applications to Azure cloud. This will get you free 'Extended Security Updates' for Windows Server 2008 / R2 and SQL Server 2008 / R2 VMs for 3 years after the deadline. Then, you may migrate your data to Azure SQL DB. Further, you can leverage your existing on-premise license to save up to 55% on Azure. Besides this, Azure migration offers you several other benefits such as:

  1. Migrate your SQL Server 2008 and 2008 R2 to Azure SQL Database: You can host your current application with few changes on Azure Cloud with Azure SQL database. This Azure SQL Database Managed Instance could be a “version-free” platform! Diligent activity however requires preparation and time. Therefore please plan for additional time for a smooth migration.
  2. Migrate your SQL Server 2008 and 2008 R2 Azure Virtual Machines: You can host your current application with few changes on Azure Virtual Machines. This gets you three years of Extended Security Updates at no additional charge and upgrade to a newer version when ready! Diligent activity however requires preparation and time. Therefore please plan for additional time for a smooth migration of SQL Server 2008 to Azure VM.
  3. Save 55% on Hybrid Implementation: You can use existing licenses and save up to 55 percent with Azure Hybrid Benefit. Contact us to know more.

Licensing Options for Windows Server 2019

Windows Server 2019 is available in 3 editions i.e. Datacenter (or Datacentre), Standard and Essentials. These editions and their respective licensing considerations are placed below:

Windows Server 2019 Datacenter Edition

Windows Server Datacenter is ideal for heavy workloads and situations that require lots of 'virtual machines (VMs)' as it allows unlimited VMs. Windows Server datacenter edition is sold on a Server - CAL model. This means you need to license the server and purchase CAL licenses for Users and devices accessing the server.

  • Server License: You need to license the server for all the physical cores. Minimum levels are 8 Cores Per processor and 16 Cores per server. To explain, your will purchase a 16 Cores license for a server with 2 X CPUs with 8 cores or less each or 1 X CPU with 16 Cores or less each. However, should you have a server with 4 X CPUs with 4 cores each, you will need to license each of the 4 CPUs with 8 cores and therefore, will purchase a license for 32 cores.
  • CAL Licenses: In addition, you will need to purchase a 'USER' or 'DEVICE' CAL for users and devices connecting to Windows Server. In general, when multiple users use a device to connect to Windows Server, then you will buy Windows DEVICE CALs. On the other hand when users' access Windows Server through multiple devices, then you will purchase 'Windows USER CAL'. The CALs are downward compatible i.e. a CAL for Windows Server 2019 can be used to access Windows Server 2016 and 2012 as well.

Windows Server 2019 Standard Edition

Windows Server Standard is good for standard workloads. A Windows Server Standard License allows 2 X 'virtual machines (VMs)'. When you need more VMs, then we 'stack' the licenses i.e. buy additional Windows Server licenses for the server. Windows Server Standard edition is sold on a Server - CAL model. This means you need to license the server and purchase CAL licenses for Users and devices accessing the server.

  • Server License: You need to license the server for all the physical cores. Minimum levels are 8 Cores Per processor and 16 Cores per server. To explain, your will purchase a 16 Cores license for a server with 2 X CPUs with 8 cores or less each or 1 X CPU with 16 Cores or less each. However, should you have a server with 4 X CPUs with 4 cores each, you will need to license each of the 4 CPUs with 8 cores and therefore, will purchase a license for 32 cores.
    Further, when you need more than two 'virtual machines (VMs)', then you need to purchase additional Windows Server license. Each of these additional licenses will allow you two VMs.
  • CAL License: In addition, you will need to purchase a 'USER' or 'DEVICE' CAL for users and devices connecting to Windows Server. In general, when multiple users use a device to connect to Windows Server, then you will buy Windows DEVICE CALs. On the other hand when users' access Windows Server through multiple devices, then you will purchase 'Windows USER CAL'. The CALs are downward compatible i.e. a CAL for Windows Server 2019 can be used to access Windows Server 2016 and 2012 as well.

Windows Server 2019 Essentials Edition

Windows Server Essentials is designed for small businesses with up to 25 Users and 50 devices. It is a specialty server and does not require CALs. The server is not promoted by Microsoft and instead recommends 'Microsoft 365' for file-sharing and collaboration.

Licensing Options for Microsoft SQL Server 2017

SQL Server 2017 is available in 4 editions i.e. Enterprise, Standard, Developer and Express. Of these, Developer and Express Editions are Free. Developer License is used by developer community to develop and test applications while the Express license is used for deploying applications in runtime that require less than 10 GB database size. MS SQL Server 2017 is now supported on Linux (RedHat, Ubuntu, SUSE Enterprise) as well. MS SQL Server Enterprise and Standard editions and their respective licensing considerations are placed below:

Microsoft SQL Server 2017 Standard Edition

MS SQL Server 2017 Standard Edition (SQL Server Standard) is a full featured database that facilitates mid-tier applications and data marts. SQL Server Standard is sold on a 'Server - CAL' as well as 'core' model. In 'Server - CAL' model, you need to license the server and purchase CAL licenses for Users and devices accessing the server. In the 'Core' model however, you do not require 'CALs'.

MS SQL 2017 License Under 'Server - CAL Model'
  • MS SQL Server License under 'Server- CAL' model: You need to license the server with a Server License. This license is independent of number of processors (CPUs) or cores. In general, you would buy SQL Server under Server - CAL model when the number of users are less and can be counted. When the number of users is large or unknown, you would buy SQL Server under 'core' model.
  • MS SQL CAL License under 'Server- CAL' model: In addition, you will need to purchase a 'USER' or 'DEVICE' CAL for users and devices connecting to SQL Server. In general, when multiple users use a device to connect to SQL Server, then you will buy SQL DEVICE CALs. On the other hand when users' access SQL Server through multiple devices, then you will purchase 'SQL USER CAL'. The CALs are downward compatible i.e. a CAL for SQL Server 2017 can be used to access SQL Server 2016 or SQL Server 2012.
MS SQL Server License Under 'CORE' Model

You need to license the server for all the physical or virtual machine (VM) or 'containers' cores. You do not require 'CAL' licenses under SQL Server Core licensing model. Minimum levels are 2 cores per processor and 4 cores per server. From cost optimisation and design considerations, most implementations are done by deploying MS SQL Server on VMs with smaller number of cores rather than licensing entire physical server when it has more than 4 cores.

To explain, your will purchase a 4 Cores license for a server, whether physical or virtual with 2 X CPUs with 2 cores or less each or 1 X CPU with 4 Cores or less each. However, should you have a server with 4 X CPUs with 1 core each, you will need to license each of the 4 CPUs with 2 cores and therefore, will purchase a license for 8 cores. There are some additional rules for core deployment involving VMs and Containers. Please contact us to discuss these requirements.

SQL Server 2019 Enterprise Edition

MS SQL Server Standard is good for mission critical and high availability applications and security requirements. SQL Server Enterprise edition is sold only on a CORE model and does not require you to purchase CALs. This means you need to license the server (physical or virtual) only.

You license a minimum of 2 cores per processor and 4 cores per server. From cost optimisation and design considerations, most implementations are done by deploying MS SQL Server on VMs with smaller number of cores rather than licensing entire physical server when it has more than 4 cores. To explain, your will purchase a 4 Cores license for a server, whether physical or virtual with 2 X CPUs with 2 cores or less each or 1 X CPU with 4 Cores or less each. However, should you have a server with 4 X CPUs with 1 core each, you will need to license each of the 4 CPUs with 2 cores and therefore, will purchase a license for 8 cores. There are some additional rules for core deployment involving VMs and Containers. Please contact us to discuss these requirements.

Considerations for Upgrade for Windows Server 2008 / R2 and SQL Server 2008 / R2

The upgrade of operating system and SQL server can be challenging. It may cost you you unpredictably and cause disruption to operations. At the time of writing this, we have ample time to upgrade your Windows server and SQL Server. The time allows us to plan so that you are not cornered by last minute issues, piling costs and disruption. While everything looks scary, there is a silver lining in the sense that time available now, allows you to not only upgrade but also carry out a full blown business and digital transformation. Few things you may like to consider now are:

  • Application Compatibility with New Versions

    : You may like to investigate compatibility of your current applications with Windows Server 2019 and SQL Server 2017. If not, then you may like to plan upgrade of these applications to Windows Server 2019 and SQL Server 2017. This is important because simple upgrade process may need be done in steps rather than one single upgrade from 2008 versions to Win Server 2019 or SQL Server 2017.
  • Upgrading Applications to Windows Server 2019 and SQL Server 2017

    : When your current applications are not compatible with Windows Server 2019 and SQL Server 2017, you may like to plan an 'upgrade' these applications. Upgrade of the applications and testing may involve lots of effort and may take time. When the task is extensive, you may as well try to carry out 'business process' transformation as well.
  • Opportunity for Business and Digital Transformation

    : The upgrade of applications is a blessing in disguise as it provides you an opportunity to carry out business and digital transformation by implement new business processes and making full use of new features and functionality. The benefits from this may offset the costs the you incur in licensing.

What does 'Extended End of Support' means?

For customers that are not able to transition before the End of Support date, we are announcing offers to help protect data and applications during the End of Support transition. Reproduced below is extract from - https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/cloud-platform/extended-security-updates

Extended Security Updates in Azure: Customers who move 2008 and 2008 R2 workloads to Azure Virtual Machines (IaaS) “as-is” will have access to Extended Security Updates for both SQL Server and Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2 for three years after the End of Support dates for free. Those that decide to move to Azure SQL Database Managed Instance (PaaS) will have access to continuous security updates, as this is a fully managed solution. Eligible customers can use the Azure Hybrid Benefit (available to customers with active Software Assurance or Server Subscriptions) to obtain discounts on the license of Azure Virtual Machines (IaaS) or Azure SQL Database Managed Instance (PaaS). Extended Security Updates for on-premises environments: Extended Security Updates will also be available for workloads running on-premises or in a hosting environment. Customers running SQL Server or Windows Server under licenses with active Software Assurance under an Enterprise Agreement (EA), Enterprise Subscription Agreement (EAS), or a Server & Cloud Enrollment (SCE), can purchase Extended Security Updates annually for three years after End of Support date. Customers can purchase Extended Security Updates only for the servers they need to cover. Extended Security Updates can be purchased directly from Microsoft or a Microsoft licensing partner.