After attending the Dev Connection conference in Orlando FL, USA, the same question was asked over and over again. Here is a summary of what some experts are saying.
When thinking about upgrading SQL Server there are a few questions you need to ask yourself.
- Is the current SQL server going out of support or required extra dollars to continue the support. For example within the next year or two, Microsoft will require extra money to support SQL 2005 as it is nearing end of life.
- Does the newer version of SQL Server Denali (2011) or SQL 2008R2 have features that you need? If yes then you have your answer. If not, you still may want to upgrade to stay current.
- Can you upgrade easily? If you are running SQL 7.0, 2000 or 2005 it will get harder to upgrade as newer versions become available. For example, if you are running SQL 7.0 and what to upgrade to SQL 2008R2, you can't directly. You need to upgrade to say version 2005 and then upgrade to 2008R2. If you are using SQL 7.0 or SQL 2000 you will need to revisit and most likely have to re write your DTS packages in SSIS (if you don't know what SSIS or DTS is then you should not upgrade!).
- Does your company have time to do the testing once you have upgraded to ensure that your databases and applications are working correctly? There is a lot of testing required when you do an upgrade so make sure you and the development team have time to convert and test everything.
Thanks for reading.