Windows Server 2003: What’s the Opportunity?

Microsoft recently announced that as of July of this year, they will no longer support servers and applications running on Windows Server 2003. Organizations that do not migrate their servers and applications to a newer platform are at risk of losing valuable support, violating their industry standards for compliance, and facing increased maintenance costs for legacy equipment and software.

While Microsoft’s announcement is causing a stir within your customers’ IT Department, they probably aren’t talking to you about the power implications and the need for a new APC UPS. Our customers tend to think of us when they need infrastructure – not IT gear. But, the Windows Server 2003 Migration does have an impact on their power infrastructure, they just may not realize it. Since your customer probably isn’t calling you about their power needs, you need to bring it up.

How does my customer’s Windows Server 2003 Migration Plan present a sales opportunity for me?

Aging server equipment will need to be replaced, and this is where you can join the conversation. Picture a rack full of servers from 2005 all connected to a Smart-UPS from 2008. In a few months, that will be a rack full of servers from 2015 all connected to a Smart-UPS from… 2008. I know what you’re thinking, generally speaking, for a single phase UPS installed in favorable environmental conditions, the life expectancy of a Smart-UPS On-Line is 10 years. A 2008 Smart-UPS has a few good years left in it. So how do I convince my customer otherwise?

Refer to the white paper, “Single Phase UPS Management, Maintenance, and Lifecycle”. This white paper offers a good explanation of how UPS technology is constantly changing. UPSs, such as the new Smart-UPS On-Line are getting more efficient and new features are constantly being added to ensure ideal compatibility with the latest servers and IT gear. Sure, the 2008 Smart-UPS can support the new servers your customer needs to install (provided you’ve replaced the battery for them, which is recommended after about 3 years), but it won’t be as efficient and may be missing some features that will prove critical to your customer’s application. It’s not that the 2008 Smart-UPS isn’t as good, it just has 2008 features and we all know technology is changing at a fast enough pace that 2008 features are a lot different than 2015 features. Just think of the cell phone you used in 2008 versus the smart phone you use today. Flip phone anyone? You wouldn’t dare.

Encourage your customers to consider upgrading their UPS fleet while they are replacing legacy server equipment. Remind them that technological improvements happen at rapid speeds, so while their 2008 UPS with fresh batteries is probably fine – it’s not optimized for the demands of today’s equipment. The latest Smart-UPS On-Line units include features best suited for today’s IT environments such as high-density applications. Talk to your customers about compatibility – it should already be on their mind as they navigate their Window Server Migration. The latest and greatest servers will need the latest and greatest in UPS technology – Smart-UPS On-Line. With newer firmware and other product improvements over the past several years, the Smart-UPS Online ensures compatibility over the network.

The Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Migration discussion within your customers’ organizations should include power and cooling infrastructure. Ask your customers how the discontinuation of support for Windows Server 2003 is affecting them – it’s a great reason to give them a call and visit their site. Together, you may find other opportunities waiting inside their racks.

Haven’t heard much about the Windows Server 2003 Migration? During the February 26th webinar, Gordon Lord, Director North American IT Distribution & Channel Strategy addressed the issues facing small and medium sized businesses (SMB) such as Windows Server 2003 Migration and Converged IT, and explained the opportunities for partners. Click Here to register and attend the on-demand event.

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