What’s the typical life span of a Windows Server?

975 pts.
Tags:
Microsoft Windows Server 2003
Server maintenance
Server management
Windows Server 2003 Enterprise Edition
Windows server administration
Windows Server Management
How long would you suggest maintaining a single installation before you decide it's time to format/reinstall/update? My Windows Server 2003 Enterprise is at 4 years.

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There are Windows servers out there that have been running happily for the last 10 years that are still working just fine. I wouldn’t ever recommend formatting and reinstalling just because.

If you have a need for the newer version, or you have upgrade rights then by all means standardize on a single version, it’ll make your life a lot easier only having a single version to manage on all your servers. But if you only have a few machines, and no upgrade rights, and there is nothing wrong with the machine, then I would leave the machine as is.

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  • jinteik
    like they say if it is not broken don't fix it.. i don't recommend formatting and setting up again is because if your server is has alot of settings and even if you might have taken note on what is needed, there will be some of the settings that you will forget to put back. it happen to me before..
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  • c007
    No need to format or reinstall, what is that for? its a server what do you mean upgrade? the version or the OS? we have server which is 20yrs but still working and no upgrades.
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  • TeachMeIT
    [...] Wondering what the typical life span of a Windows Server is? Mrdenny, Jinteik and C007 don’t suggest reformatting or reinstalling (i.e. If it’s [...]
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  • TeachMeIT
    [...] Wondering what the typical life span of a Windows Server is? Mrdenny, Jinteik, and C007 have some [...]
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  • Sixball
    Regualr updates, good administration and carefull implementations can lead to a server running, like MrDenny said, for 10+ years easily...
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  • Hlx
    My opinion is that it would almost never be justified to formatreinstall to the same hardware. Keep in mind, depending on your usage, new hardware may easily pay for itself in better performance, better managability, and lower power and cooling costs. Unless your server is underutilized or your company isn't growing, build new, migrate, retire is the way to go for old hardware.
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  • slack400
    The limiting factors could be your IT policies. We've written in policies that require business critical functions to run on Manufacture supported hardware and software, including OS. So while a well maintained system could run for 10 years we'd have to migrate from Server 2003 as soon as Microsoft twilight's official support. Good to hear about such longevity with something that's not an AS/400! (cause 10 years of continuous up-time is what we're known for).
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