Preparing for Windows Server 2008/2008 R2 end of support

Extended support for Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server 2008 R2 ends January 14, 2020. Microsoft will no longer release security updates, which may expose service providers to security attacks or cause compliance issues with industry regulations such as GDPR.

If you have customer workloads that won’t allow you to transition before the Windows Server 2008/2008 R2 end of support date, it is important that you understand your options.

Extended Security Updates (ESU): Customers running Windows Server 2008/2008 R2 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 the end of support date. Extended Security Updates include provision of Security Updates and Bulletins rated “critical” and “important,” for a maximum of three years after January 14, 2020.

What does this mean to you as the Hoster?

From a hoster’s perspective, the product End of Life and Extended Security Updates are an SA benefit outside of SPLA:

  • Your customers can purchase ESU for Windows Server running in dedicated hardware or dedicated virtual OSEs, which you can license on SPLA if you are an authorized Licensed Mobility Partner (requires an addendum to your SPLA agreement).
  • End customers can purchase ESU themselves under their own Enterprise Agreement (EA), Enterprise Subscription Agreement (ESA), or a Server & Cloud Enrollment (SCE), and bring their licenses to their hosting service provider. This means the licenses need to be deployed on dedicated hardware or virtual OSEs because Windows Server is not eligible for License Mobility.

Extended Security Updates in Azure: Customers who move Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2 workloads to Azure Virtual Machines (IaaS) “as-is” will have access to Extended Security Updates for Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2 for three years after the end of support dates for free. For ultimate flexibility and profitability, you can offer Azure to your customers as a CSP Indirect Reseller. Enroll in the Microsoft Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program through DXC to get the resources and guidance you need to provide migration support for your customers.

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