Microsoft 2012 Is Nearing Its End Of Service, Here’s What’s Next For You

The end is near.

The end of service for Microsoft 2012, to be more specific. It’s slated for October 2023 and you need to be prepared because, after this, Microsoft 2012 will no longer benefit from security and non-security feature updates, technical support, bug resolution or technical content updates.

While it may seem daunting, this end of support provides the perfect opportunity to modernize your applications.

As always, you’ve got plenty of options, depending on what your organization needs to not only have all your bases covered but to be more successful than ever with more relevant, intuitive systems in place.

Before diving into your options for upgrading, let’s look at the overall benefits of moving your server up to 2022. 

3 Big Benefits of Upgrading to Windows Server 2022

Check out three reasons to take your Microsoft experience to the next level. 

#1 – Multi-Layer Security 

Microsoft has consistently brought its A-game when it comes to improvements and enhancements in security and the new 2022 server iteration is no different. 

Microsoft will provide you with firmware, drivers, and additional hardware that will boost the security of your most critical systems, preventing bad actors from accessing your most vulnerable data and systems.

Hardware Root of Trust

You’ll have a secure, hardware-based place to store sensitive data and cryptographic keys with the 2022-Windows-Server-required Trusted Platform Module, or TPM 2.0. 

And, the Bitlocker drive encryption (another new 2022 server feature) uses the same root of trust technology, providing fantastic protection from data theft.

Enhanced Firmware Security

Firmware-based attacks have been trending up, the reason why the improved security in the latest Server from Microsoft is so important. The new secure-core server processors use Dynamic Root of Trust for Measurement technology (DRTM) in addition to Direct Memory Access (DMA) protection.

Virtual Environment Security

Virtualization-based Security (VBS) is supported by the 2022 secured-core servers. Thanks to these improved hardware virtualization features, your data will be protected from a variety of weaknesses that lead to cryptocurrency mining attacks. 

#2 – Hybrid Capabilities 

Windows Server 2022 offers Hybrid Clouds – a new approach that offers a level of agility that trumps that of previous versions and helps your business quickly change direction and adapt, as needed. If you’re used to the limits of Microsoft 2012, this alone is a major upgrade.

#3 – Application Platform Enhancements

With the latest Server, you’ll have a versatile platform for updating container applications. It supports large-scale, critical programs, for example, an SQL Server requiring 48TB of memory.

The Windows Server 2022 loads 30% faster than the preceding operating systems thanks to the reduced-size Windows containers. 

You Have Upgrade Options

When upgrading to Windows Server 2022, there are several options you can choose from, depending on your specific needs. They include:

  • Windows Server 2022 Standard
  • Windows Server 2022 Data Center
  • Windows Server 2022 Data Center: Azure Edition
  • Windows Server 2022 Essential Edition 

Here’s a breakdown with the most important details you need to know about each.

Windows Server 2022 Standard

This is what you could call the “base model.” The design is intended to aid individuals or organizations with physical machines or minimally virtualized server requirements.

The licensing model of the standard version is core-based, which means that one license can only function with one Hyper-V host and two virtual machines.

The Standard edition can support as many as 16 cores. Systems requiring more than this will need additional licenses for each core on the CPU. You’ll need a CAL (Client Access Line) for each client needing access to the Standard Server. 

Data Center Edition

This iteration of Windows Server 2022 is a great choice if your organization has a highly-virtualized environment, such as data centers or the cloud. It has some similar features with some additions and changes from the Standard edition.

The most important difference between Standard and this edition centers around VM licensing. While the Standard edition allows for just one Hyper-V host, Data Center doesn’t limit the number of Hyper-V VM or containers. 

Another major difference between the Standard Server and the Data Center is, while you’ll still get as many as 16 cores, you’ll also get a license for each additional core. Each client will require a CAL.

Data Center: Azure Edition

This unique option runs in one of two ways – either as an Azure Stack HCL cluster or as an Azure virtual machine. 

There are two things you can’t do with this edition, however:

  • It can’t be installed on bare hardware.
  • It can’t be installed and run as a Hyper-V virtual machine. 

Even so, Windows Server 2022 Data Center: Azure Edition offers new features you won’t find with the Standard and Data Center versions. 

For example, with the Hot Patch feature, you can install updates without the need to restart the server. You’ll also get quick access to shared files without a VPN requirement thanks to the Server Message Block (via QIC). 

Windows Server 2022 Essential Edition

If you’re a small business or a startup, this may be the best option for you. It’s intended for organizations with up to 50 devices and 25 users, though it is capped at 10 cores that support one socket and one virtual machine. 

Weigh Your Options Carefully  

With the end of support for Microsoft 2012 on the horizon, it’s vital that you consider all your options carefully. 

While your knee-jerk reaction may be to just suffer through with an unsupported Microsoft 2012 edition, there are many compelling reasons across functionality, support and more to make the upgrade. 

What About Your Old Software? 

What can you do if you’d like to upgrade your server but some of your software is older as well, and not supported by Server 2022?

You still have options in the form of Microsoft’s “downgrade rights.” If you purchase Windows Server 2022 and can’t use it due to software incompatibility issues, Microsoft will allow you to install Server 2016 or 2019. When your software is upgraded, you can upgrade your server to the 2022 version at no additional cost. 

Get the Help You Need

There’s a lot to think about when making decisions for your organization’s server needs, both on a technical and business strategy level. One thing that’s certain is that Microsoft 2012 is approaching its end of service and you need to be prepared to hit the ground running so you don’t miss a beat.

The great thing is that you don’t have to figure it all out on your own. We’re here to help.

Get in touch for a free consultation and let our experts help you make the right choice for your unique needs.


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The Abacus Blog Team
At Abacus IT, our blog is authored by a team of IT experts with a wealth of experience in various facets of technology. Our primary blog author is a seasoned IT professional with over 20 years of experience in the industry. With a deep understanding of cybersecurity, cloud solutions, network infrastructure, and IT management, our author provides valuable insights and actionable tips to help you optimize your IT operations.

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