The evolving landscape of ‘computing’ can be attributed to what everyone is talking about – cloud computing and virtualization. Companies looking to join this evolution need to make sure they have the right underpinnings; specifically their software and hardware components. The combination of Windows Server 2012 R2 and the latest Intel® Xeon®–based server hardware should be part of an IT strategy for companies and departments looking to modernize their IT infrastructure. This checklist will identify 10 of the top issues driving the need for server OS software and hardware upgrades.
1. Plug security holes
Like we said in a previous blog, Microsoft no longer provides patches for security issues that continue to crop up in Microsoft Windows Server 2003. This is important for business that have to adhere to certain regulations and also businesses that accept credit cards may lose their merchant privileges, if they continue to run on an unsupported operating system. Windows Server 2012 R2, on the other hand, leverages the modern security hardware features of Intel Xeon processors, to provide fast hardware-based encryption to keep systems and data secure.
2. Survive the data deluge
One effective method for reducing expenditures for new storage is employing data de-duplication technology to reduce the amount of redundant data you need to back up, archive or simply move from point A to point B. Users can attain these benefits with a simple upgrade, thanks to the de-duplication features found in Windows Server 2012 R2.
3. Broad application and platform support
With the influx of new database technologies and applications to support trends such as Big Data and predictive analytics, organizations need the latest hardware and software just to be competitive. Many of the best Windows databases and server applications didn’t even exist until after support for Windows Server 2003 ended. The latest software is not being rigorously tested on decade-old hardware and certainly isn’t supported on it, which means if there were any issues, could paralyze business operations.
4. Reduce operating expenditures
NZ organisations know how expensive it can be to keep IT systems running. Maintenance and energy costs alone put pressure on IT budgets, but with server sprawl, where new servers were deployed for each new workload, it’s no wonder that on average, companies spend nearly three-quarters of their IT budget on operating expenses. By migrating to new Intel Xeon-based servers running Windows Server 2012 R2, companies can quickly achieve dramatic savings in both the number of servers and the amount of power they draw. Servers that are more than 4 years old deliver only 4% of the performance of today’s best servers while using 35% more energy.
5. Get cloud-ready
The benefits are clear, including capital cost and manpower savings as well as reduced data centre footprint, which saves valuable floor space and cuts energy costs. Outdated server hardware with 10-year-old operating systems were not designed to support the cloud. The need to match higher performance processors with large memory capacity, high speed and low latency storage, and faster network bandwidth are crucial for a virtualized environment that is the very foundation of a cloud ready infrastructure.
6. Improved performance
The demand on servers has been increasing substantially due to broader organizational use of the data and applications required by end users. Lenovo servers running Intel Xeon E5 processors and Microsoft Windows Server 2012 R2 can increase performance up to 5× when compared to platforms from 2007 running Windows Server 2003. This provides the performance and responsiveness your organization needs.
7. Support mobility and remote access
We’ve spoken about mobility and the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) trend for a long time and today it’s even more evident that more and more employees work from home, from a remote office, or from the road. Yet these users still need access to applications and data that reside on the servers in the data center. By upgrading to new servers running Windows Server 2012 R2, businesses can take advantage of expanded device support and streamlined virtual desktop configuration and management. That simplifies the job of enabling devices such as tablets and smartphones to access business critical applications and data from wherever users may be.
8. Solid reliability for a 24/7 world
Today there’s no excuse for downtime, which can drive away customers and cause widespread internal problems. That makes reliability a key requirement for server systems. Reliability is tough to deliver for older servers because mainstream support from Microsoft for Windows Server 2003 ended more than 4 years ago.
9. Agility, scalability and growth
Companies need to easily scale and be able to manage a growing number of servers both physical and virtual. Windows Server 2012 R2 allows you to add both virtual and physical servers to your infrastructure while utilizing a single Server Manager instance to administer changing workloads. New server hardware with error-correcting ECC memory enables the use of ever-faster and larger memory pools to support growth without fear of failure due to memory errors.
10. Increased Productivity
One thing that hasn’t changed since the introduction of Windows Server 2003 is the IT mantra: “Do more with less.” Economic challenges of the past several years have further pressured IT budgets to the point where current infrastructure is often not only aging, but actually holding companies back from their full potential. If IT is to enable innovation in business processes while also cutting costs, the status quo must change. Enterprises must employ the latest, most cost-effective and efficient tools so IT can deploy new solutions that deliver business value with demonstrable ROI for every IT dollar spent.
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