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At Proxar IT we offer a range of services for Windows Server, including Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2 migrations which is end of life: 

  • Hosting 
  • Migrations and upgrades 
  • OS Management  
  • Server Monitoring 
  • Updates and patch management 
  • Security hardening and assessment 
  • Licencing  

Windows Server upgrades and migrations  

We often help customer upgrade old versions of Windows Server to new platforms. This can be a straightforward upgrade to Windows Server 2019 or something more involved like moving server workloads to Azure or interim upgrades. 

We can help with your Windows Server needs with migrations and upgrades for example with the following services:    

  • Windows Server roles and infrastructure – Active Directory, DNS, DHCP, Hyper-V, RRAS etc. 
  • Application servers – Line Of business or other custom applications 
  • SQL, Exchange, ADFS or SharePoint Server 
  • File and Print services including FollowMe Printing 

Here are a few reasons that regularly drive customers need to modernise Windows Server: 

  • Security threats 
  • Compliance or other regulatory requirements  
  • Urgent capacity needs 
  • Poor performance/slowness or reliability issues 
  • Application upgrades 
  • Software compatibility and end of support 
  • Hardware lifecycle, support and expiry 

If any of these issues above sound familiar, then please get in touch, Proxar IT can help you with all your Windows Server requirements.  

Windows Server end of support: what does it really mean? 

While end of support can be seen as a nuisance, especially if these older systems are working fine, this can be an opportunity to transform your IT and deliver more efficient and secure services.  

The cost to not upgrade can actually be more, as the upgrade will still need to happen at some point, here are some of the associated risks:  

  • No security updates 
  • Raises compliance and regulatory issues 
  • Additional cost for support and patches 
  • Missed innovation opportunities    

Windows Server 2008 free Extended Security Updates 

Windows Server 2008 and R2 is still a commonly used platform but with end of support here, what is a business to do when they are simple not ready to migrate to a new version yet?  

Proxar IT can migrate Windows Server 2008 and R2 services to Azure, which brings three years of free Extended Security Updates (ESU) support.  Rehosting these services with no application code changes, gives you more time to plan a future direction and strategy.    

If you have existing licences with Software Assurance, you can benefit from significant costs savings with Azure Hybrid Benefit. 

5 great things about Windows Server 2019 

There is a lot to like about Windows Server 2019, with wide range of new features, flexible deployment options and refinements. 

  • Most secure version of Windows Server 
  • Server core, the smaller footprint version is now more practical with improved management 
  • Seamless integration with cloud technologies   
  • Hosts Windows and Linux container workloads 
  • Predicts when servers reach capacity with intelligent system insights 

System Insights is the new predictive analytics feature in Windows Server 2019. 

Remote Desktop Server and Windows Virtual Desktop   

Remote Desktop Servers or Terminal Server upgrades are another common workload we work with, where Windows Server 2019 is a great option. Office 365 ProPlus, OneDrive for Business sync and OneDrive Files On-Demand is fully supported with Windows Server 2019, which is a recent change by Microsoft. 

Another reason to consider upgrading RDS is that the Office 365 desktop apps will no longer be supported on Windows Server 2012 and R2 effective January 2020, similarly Windows Server 2008/R2 which will be unsupported at the same time. 

A new exciting option that we offering customers is migrating existing RDS servers to Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD).  This can be with Windows Server 2012 R2, 2016, 2019 session hosts. 

Here we migrate the session hosts to WVD using Azure Virtual Machines.  This brings across all your applications, while Microsoft provide the RDS infrastructure, which they manage.  This gives you the flexibility to provide all the applications your staff need, with less dependencies from on-premise systems.  This can also be extended with the new Windows 10 multi-session experience. 

Migrate Windows Server to Azure 

Hosting Windows Server in Azure provides many benefits, it’s with little surprise that Microsoft describe this as the cloud that knows Windows Server best, including with: 

  • Unmatched security 
  • Built-in hybrid – Over 3 million Windows Server nodes hybrid enabled with Azure   
  • Most cost effective – 5x lower cost for Windows and SQL than other clouds  

Migrating Windows Server to Azure can be done in a number of ways depending on the how rapidly the migration is to be completed. 

  • Rehost: Migrate Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2 workloads to Azure VM 
  • Refactor, Rearchitect or Rebuild: Innovate with Server containers and Azure services   

                                                                               Rehost                                                      Refactor and Rebuild 
                                                               Migrate to Virtual Machines in Azure      Innovate with cloud native services 

Custom Line of Business Apps 
Web App Azure VMs with Windows Server Windows Containers with Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS), Azure Service Fabric 
Database Azure SQL Database Managed Instance Azure Database for MySQL/PostgresSQL Azure CosmosDB 
Microsoft Apps 
Office Workloads Office 365-for SharePoint, Exchange and Teams 
Remote Desktop Server Move RDS role to Azure VMs with Windows Server Windows Virtual Desktop 
ISV App 
ISV APP Azure hosted app (Azure Marketplace) SaaS packaged app (Azure Marketplace) 
Server Roles 
Active Directory Deploy Active Directory in Azure VMs with Windows Server Azure Active Directory and Azure Active Directory Domain Services 
DNS Deploy DNS Servers in Azure VMs with Windows Server Azure DNS 
File Server Azure Files Service and Azure File Sync with Windows Server Storage Migration Service 

At Proxar IT we can assess your current environment, plan, design and implement an upgrade or migration, or introduce a new solution. 

Proxar IT can also help minimize your costs with the savings that can be made with Azure Hybrid Benefit and Reserved Instances which can offer sizable discounts compared to Azure pay-as-you-go pricing. 

Windows Server and Azure Licencing  

There is a lot to consider with Windows Server licencing including: 

  • Core-based processor licensing  
  • Windows Server Client Access Licences (CALs) 
  • RDS CALS 
  • Software Assurance 
  • Downgrade rights 
  • Azure Server Subscriptions, Azure Hybrid Benefit, Reserved Instances 

We always get the best pricing when working with customers, we utilize several channels, to get the best value.  Proxar IT are a Microsoft Gold Partner and Cloud Solution Provider which means we offer cloud licencing directly to customers including Windows Server and Azure: 

Azure reservations 

  • Azure Reserved VM Instances 
  • SQL DB Reservations 
  • SQL Managed Instance 
  • Azure Cosmos DB 
  • Azure SQL Data Warehouse 
  • App Services 
  • Azure Databricks unit reservations 

Server subscriptions 

  • Windows Server 
  • Remote Desktop Services (RDS) CALs 
  • SQL Server 

Also, we can offer Office licencing including Office 365 and Microsoft 365. 

Managing and Monitoring Windows Server 

When working with customers we can help them modernise their server environments:  

  • Fully managed Windows Server  
  • Host Windows Server in our datacentres  
  • Patch Management  
  • Server monitoring   
  • Virtual Machines, Physical Servers, Hosted, On-Premise or Azure