Microsoft plays chicken with Extended Support for Exchange 2010 end date and swerves first

Extension to October 2020. But what of Server 2008 or... Windows 7?

Updated Microsoft has blinked and told customers that support for Exchange 2010 is to be kicked back from 14 January 2020 to 13 October of the same year.

The move comes after the company took a long, hard look at just how many installs of its elderly email server were out there and realised that users simply weren't migrating at a pace that suited the dreams of Redmond.

The Redmond gang admitted that killing off support for something that keeps many an organisation ticking over "can be an adjustment" and so have allowed administrators until 13 October before they really, really, really have to get off the platform.

Admittedly, some companies are deep in the middle of migrations to either the latest and greatest on-prem version or are bravely headed cloudwards with Office 365 and Exchange online. However, a sizeable chunk are quite happy with something that, after all these years, is pretty "popular and reliable".

Other customers, horror of horrors, are heading somewhere a little more Googly.

The move will see Extended Support continue past the original 14 January 2020 date, but once 13 October is reached there will be no more tech support or patches for the venerable software. And while the server won't suddenly self-destruct, there will be no more security updates and, perhaps even more significantly, no time zone tweaks.

"Clearly, we think moving to Exchange Online and Office 365 is a good idea," the company stated. It has also made getting to the latest and greatest on-premises version tricky. You'll have to go to Exchange 2013 or 2016 and then to 2019 if the cloud is not for you.

While aligning things nicely with Office 2010 and Sharepoint 2010, the change has set the server at odds with Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2, on which it can be found running. 14 January 2020 remains the end of the line for the beloved server operating system, as well as the still-popular Windows 7. Both server and desktop OS can, of course, be given a bit longer on life support via migration to Azure.

We contacted Microsoft to check if there was a chance that extended support for Windows Server 2008 or Windows 7 might possibly also linger on a little longer but have yet to receive a reply. ®

Updated to add 09:55 UTC 17/09/2019

A Microsoft spokesperson was quick to slap down the hopes and dreams of those looking for a reprieve for other server products: "For Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2, the end of support date is January 14, 2020. Customers on these versions can purchase Extended Security Updates for on-premises servers for up to three years. For customers who migrate their Windows Server 2008 and R2 servers to Azure, we offer three years of free Extended Security Updates only on Azure. We encourage our customers to upgrade to the latest versions as soon as possible."

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