Frightened of upgrading your company’s SQL Server 2005? We have helpful steps for a manageable & simplified process

Upgrading a database can seem frightening! Fortunately, Agile BI offers exceptional tools from Microsoft and support to help you smoothly upgrade SQL Server 2005 to SQL Server 2014 and Microsoft Azure SQL Database before the end-of-support deadline on the 12th of April 2016. Find here three steps that can help make this an efficient upgrade:

First, do you know what is in your database environment?

For an efficient upgrade SQL Server 2005, it is necessary to organise everything before getting started. Step one in your planning process is to explore what is in your database environment: workloads, virtual or physical servers, what’s running on which versions and editions of software, and so on. For example, you will want to find out before upgrade SQL Server 2005 if SQL Server 2005 is running in your environment. Then, discover if any applications are running on SQL Server 2005 so you can protect critical data after the end-of-support date.

When you upgrade SQL Server 2005, Agile BI can help you running the Microsoft Assessment and Planning Toolkit, which automates the process of gathering data about your database environment. We can also help you find unidentified databases that might be impacted by end of support. Further we can also provide offerings to help you do a detailed assessment of your database environment and recommend next steps. The cooperation with the right partner can greatly reduce work and worries on an upgrade.

Second, do you target destinations for each application and workload?

One of the most important steps in upgrade SQL Server 2005 to SQL Server 2014 is the step to target destinations for each application and workload.

After collecting data about what is running in your IT environment, the next step to think about is where you will run your upgraded databases. When it comes to updating your data platform, you have a few options for where to move applications and workloads. You can

  • upgrade your on-premises servers
  • implement virtual machines
  • or move to the cloud — a combination of three is the most common option

Microsoft published recently a guide about the SQL Server Upgrade Target Decision Tool to help you think through this process, compare your options, and identify upgrade targets based on your individual business needs.

How should I approach Consolidation and Virtualisation?

When you are upgrading it is the perfect time to look for ways to gain efficiency and manage performance — in this case consolidation and virtualisation. Have a look at the diagram which highlights how you might approach consolidating and virtualising your applications and workloads as well as taking Web applications to the cloud with Azure SQL Database.

Hybrid Cloud Upgrade from SQL Server 2005

It is possible to move certain applications and processes to upgraded on-premises servers to get the reliable performance necessary for mission-critical tasks.

If choosing to virtualise using Windows Server Hyper-V or Azure VMs, one of the great benefits of virtualisation is that you can run multiple applications or workloads on the same server while each maintains its own separate environment. Another benefit is that Azure VMs help further reduce total cost of ownership and increase availability. Because Azure VMs are hosted in the cloud, you can leverage the high availability of Microsoft’s cloud infrastructure while reducing capital expense for purchasing your own hardware and related IT costs.

Another option is to consolidate multiple databases or instances using Windows Server and Hyper-V to reduce IT sprawl, increase efficiency and free up resources for new tasks.

Moving your Web applications to the cloud and reducing administration is possible using Azure SQL Database, which is a database-as-a-service in the cloud. With this option, you get the benefits of a cloud infrastructure with enterprise-grade security and scale, high availability, superior performance and near-zero maintenance.

Are you ready for an increased ROI?

Of course you are! Check out the Microsoft Consulting study – Experience the benefits of SQL Server 2014 when migrating.

Third, have you found your upgrade strategy?

This is where an experienced and reliable Microsoft partner can help you. When upgrade SQL 2005 Agile BI can walk you through some common upgrade strategies and offer ways that you can approach the upgrade process. By planning thoughtfully, your upgrade will be less complicated, smoother and more cost-effective.

Larger upgrade projects can take six to 12 months to execute, so the time to contact Agile BI – a reliable Microsoft Gold Partner is now!

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