Your Next Steps for the Windows Server 2012 End of Support

Windows Server 2012 concluded its mainstream support over four years ago, in October 2018. However, Microsoft extended the end date for extended support by an additional five years to provide customers ample time to transition to newer, fully supported Windows Server versions. That time has finally arrived. In just seven months, Microsoft is scheduled to terminate support for Windows Server 2012 and its associated R2 version.

It is imperative that you take action promptly. So, what are your available options?


Migrate to Microsoft Azure (Recommended)

Microsoft Azure is a cloud-based environment. Elements of Azure were included in the 2012 servers (called Windows Azure at the time) but really 2012 servers were designed to support both an on-premise (physical) infrastructure alongside a cloud-based one. 

By migrating your systems to the cloud you receive three-fold benefits:

  1. You never have to upgrade your systems again. That simple. On top of that? Azure offers multiple additional resources to your environment including security and data loss prevention. 
  2. You don’t have to worry about End of Life or End of Support announcements forcing you into a new upgrade every couple of years. You may have to increase your cloud size, but overall, it eliminates future headaches like the 2012 End of Support announcement (spoiler alert: this will eventually happen to the next server generations as well!)
  3. Cervisys partners with Microsoft Azure and can help you make this ONE migration as easy as possible. No hassle is needed.

Upgrade your Window Server

Is it possible to upgrade your Windows Server 2012 R2 to the latest Windows system? In short, yes, but there are some important considerations.

Simply jumping from your existing 2012 system to the most recent Windows 2022 isn’t feasible. There have been substantial updates in terms of processor capabilities, memory, and disk space requirements between your 2012 system and the current one. Your somewhat outdated environment would require some fine-tuning before it could support the latest Windows Server.

The preferred approach would be to upgrade incrementally. It’s worth noting that you don’t necessarily need to upgrade all the way to 2022. Updating to Windows 2019 can put your systems in good shape (at least until the next End of Support announcement).

Extended Security Updates

Although this is not our preferred choice, you do have the option to continue operating in your 2012 environment for an extended period, albeit at an additional expense. This option is particularly relevant for those who may not be able to meet the migration deadline or have subscription licenses that restrict moving to the cloud or upgrading their systems.

For those considering this path, there are specific prerequisites and criteria to fulfill. If this option aligns with your needs, you can find more information by visiting this resource.

Other Options

If none of the above suit your fancy, you have some more strenuous but available options:

  • Migrate from an on-prem physical 2012 to an on-prem 2022 Virtual Machine (VM) program
  • Migrate from an on-premise Server 2012 to an Azure Server 2022
  • Migrate from a Private Cloud 2012 R2 server to an Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) Server 2019.


One of the primary reasons we’re telling you about this now is because time is of the essence during the next 7 months. There are a lot of things to consider before any sort of change like migrations or upgrades can take place. Whether you’ve chosen to migrate or upgrade your servers, here are a few things to keeping mind before transitioning:

  • Audit your servers: In the initial stages of planning for a change, you will want to prepare a list of servers you use in your infrastructure. After you have that list, find out what each of those servers is responsible for in your environment. This gets you started on the right foot so there are no systems hiccups or even, God forbid, breakdowns during transition. 
  • Schedule a time slot: Like a lot of things in technology, migrations and upgrades will take time. And during that time, your customers and users may be affected. By scheduling out a time slot (we recommend not during business hours!), you can avoid hassles for your users. We also recommend weekends when your users might not be as active. You don’t actually have to be present for the upgrade/migration as many can be accomplished remotely. Just make sure you have a few people on standby if any problems arise! 
  • Check your backups: Unfortunately, things can always go wrong! This is another reason why time is of the essence. Make sure you have an up-to-date backup, otherwise, you may lose data and resources loaded into the server. Verify that the backup isn’t damaged and restore it as needed before you migrate or upgrade! 
  • Then (and only then!) figure out which replacement type you want: From here, you can decide whether or not to migrate or upgrade. In the end, we recommend doing what’s best for your business. Perhaps you want a physical on-premise system or a cloud-based server that operates off-premise. Once you’ve laid the foundation, you will be in a great position to decide on your replacement type without the hassle! 


I understand that this is quite a bit of information to process, and I’ve been engrossed in researching it since the announcement last week. Nevertheless, the effort is well worth it to ensure our systems continue to operate seamlessly.

If you find yourself in need of assistance or are unsure about the best course of action, please don’t hesitate to reach out. We are here to support you. Get in touch with us for guidance on migrations, solutions, or any questions related to this Microsoft update. Let us help streamline this transition for you! We look forward to speaking with you soon!

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