windows server 2012 r2 end of life

Windows Server 2012 R2 End of Life: What is Extended Support

Windows Server 2012 R2 End of life deadline (October 10, 2023) Almost here. After this date, Windows Server 2012 and 2012 R2 will no longer receive regular patches or critical security updates, making their security and compliance a serious concern.

Since the upgrade process often takes more than a year, we urge users not to delay the transfer process any longer. Microsoft recommends using the latest upgradeable version, which will be for Windows Server 2012 or 2012 R2 Windows Server 2019.

The article below discusses Basic and Extended Support, End of Support, what you should do if you must continue to use Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 after the end of life, and more.

What is extended support? What does end of support mean?

Windows Server 2012 and 2012 R2 follow a fixed lifecycle approach, as Microsoft provides 5 years of basic support and 5 years of extended support.

product receive everyone Types of updates and support During the period of basic support, while during the period of extended support, it Stop receiving non-security updates. After the end of the extended support period, the product reaches the final stage, i.e. the end of the support.

If necessary, users can subscribe to a paid plan called Extended Security Update to continue receiving updates and support for up to 3 years after the end of the extended support period. But for those who are not on this program, there will be no patches or security updates after the product reaches the end of support.

current support

The primary support stage refers to the first 5 years of a product’s life cycle. During this period, the product receives feature updates, security patches, and service packs. Users can also request updates that are not related to security, incident support, or product feature changes.

For Windows Server 2012 R2, the base support phase was from 11/25/2013 to 10/9/2018.

Expanded support

Extended Support Phase refers to the last five years of a product’s life cycle. During this period, the product receives only security updates, and users can no longer request new design changes or non-security updates.

Windows Server 2012 R2 is currently in the Extended Support phase.

end of support

As mentioned, after a product reaches the end-of-life phase, Microsoft will stop providing most forms of updates and support for it, making it a security risk.

For customers still in the upgrade process or those who need to continue using older products, Microsoft offers one final option: the Extended Security Update (ESU) program.

The expiration date for Windows Server 2012 R2 is 10/10/2023.

Extended Security Update (ESU)

ESU is basically a paid plan under which users will continue to receive important security updates for up to 3 years after the end of the extended support phase. If you choose to migrate to Azure, you will receive these updates for free.

But for those using Windows Server on-premises, you will need to purchase Extended Security Updates annually. The cost of this will be a certain percentage of the cost of the latest version of Windows Server, as shown in the table below.

year starting date Expiry date price
1 year extended security update October 11, 2023 October 8, 2024 75% of the license cost
2 year extended security update October 9, 2024 October 14, 2025 100% of the license cost
3 year extended security update October 15, 2025 October 13, 2026 125% of the license cost

The upside down Under this plan, you don’t have to worry about your server’s security while you’re on the move, and while you upgrade parts of your server, you won’t need to keep paying for it the following year.

On the other hand, the the negative side The is that if you choose this plan late (2nd or 3rd year), you will need to pay for previous years’ updates as well.

For any other inquiries, we recommend that you visit Microsoft’s comprehensive FAQ page, the Frequently Asked Questions about Extended Security Updates, and the Windows Server 2012 End of Support page.

What version of Windows Server should you upgrade to?

A maximum of Windows Server can be upgraded two copies. The latest upgradeable version for Windows Server 2012 R2 is Windows Server 2019.

Why can’t I continue to use Windows Server 2012 R2?

As mentioned, once Windows Server 2012 and 2012 R2 reach the EOL stage, they will no longer receive necessary security updates. This puts them in Increased risk of cyber attacks and non-compliance. The option to receive a few more years of security updates comes with a premium.

To add to this, newer versions such as Windows Server 2019 and 2022 simply offer road More features, better performance.

And if you’re still not convinced to stay away from Windows Server 2012 R2, this article on exploiting vulnerabilities may change your mind.

How to upgrade Windows Server 2012 R2 to Windows Server 2019?

There are many ways to deploy a new Windows server. But when we say upgrade, we are specifically talking about a file promotion in the same place. An in-place upgrade is the best option for most people as you can upgrade while keeping the same old hardware and configurations.


We recommend reading Windows Server 2012 R2 to 2019 for step-by-step instructions on what to do before, during, and after the upgrade process.

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