As we move further into the era of Microsoft SQL Server 2008 end of support (EOS), many businesses feel the pressure to modernize their SQL workloads. Operating without support or security updates is a time-tested formula for incurring major security and compliance risks. For many, the path forward is migrating their SQL Server installations to AWS. Even businesses running more recent and still-supported versions of SQL Server may be compelled by the reliability, scalability, security, and cost advantages of moving SQL Server to AWS.
For those still on Microsoft SQL Server 2008, though, the need is becoming acute. As a result, some businesses try migrating their SQL Server installations to AWS themselves—and run into roadblocks. For example, they have trouble with key process errors, such as failing to perform a full database backup—a prerequisite for successful migration. [This error shows up in the task log as “No FULL database backup found (under the ‘FULL’ recovery model).”]
Others are plagued by mysteries such as missing identity columns. This happens because the AWS database management service (DMS) doesn’t support identity columns when you create a target schema. You have to add them after the initial load.
The Need for Expertise
The simple truth is that you need a certain level of expertise in both AWS and Microsoft SQL Server to ensure a smooth migration. Aside from technical complexities, even basic administrative questions relating to, say, licensing can pose problems:
MICROSOFT SQL SERVER 2008 LICENSE MIGRATION FAQ’s
- Can you bring your own SQL Server licenses for use on AWS?
Yes, you can bring your own SQL Server licenses
- How do you know how many licenses to bring in?
It depends on factors such as whether you are licensing SQL Server under Microsoft’s License Mobility through Software Assurance and whether you are using Dedicated Hosts on EC2.
- How do you track usage if you’re bringing your own licenses?
By using AWS Config as the data source to track configuration changes against physical resources (think sockets and cores).
These are just a few of the questions your team will need to address are part of your migration project. But is that the kind of knowledge that contributes to your business’s mission and strategic objectives? Does it have a significant positive impact on your business’s bottom line?
Some Costly Alternatives
Unless your business is in a handful of specialized niches, you may find it prohibitively expensive to maintain a high level of technical expertise in-house. For example, you could be on the hook for $625,000 a year to staff cloud resources with the skills and knowledge to migrate and manage AWS workloads. And paying professional services fees for outside experts to perform the migration and maintain the new installations over time hardly constitutes a money-saving alternative.
What does make financial sense is to engage a partner who has developed tested and proven best practices and templates through hundreds of successful AWS projects. Such a partner will have streamlined and refined the migration process, enabling them to help you migrate quickly, securely, and cost-effectively, whether you’re re-platforming, re-architecting, or re-hosting.
A Simple and Affordable Solution
If you’d like to know about the ways Eplexity can help you migrate your SQL Server installation to AWS, you can watch our webinar anytime. Or if you have specific questions, please get in touch with us. We’ll listen to your concerns, answer your questions, and show you how to solve your SQL Server challenges without the stress and without the hassles. We’re here to make your job easier, and we look forward to helping you.