Navigating a Server Sunset: SQL Server EOL in October 2023

July 05, 2023

If you’re using a technology system that’s more than a decade old, it’s probably time to reassess your options and decide what the best tools are for your orthopedic practice. We all know that technology doesn’t last forever, and the older your system is, the harder it will be to use and maintain it—especially once the software company behind it sunsets their servers and stops providing support. 

As the technology world evolves, it’s important to ensure you’re taking the proper steps to keep up with new technological demands. To stay ahead of Server Sunsets, you can turn to Phoenix Ortho for trusted software solutions that are designed to help orthopedic clinics operate smoothly. The support team is always available as a resource to answer any questions and help you select the best-hosted cloud, private cloud, or server option to fit the needs of your clinic.

Sneak Peek! Phoenix Ortho and partners True North are ready to support you with all of your server and hosting needs. Current customers can fill out a support ticket now for immediate help with all of your options. 

What Is A Server Sunset?

Out with the old and in with the new, right? When software companies, like Microsoft, introduce new technology, they often need to pull support away from their older systems to provide support for the newer solution. Intentionally rolling back support and implementation of old technology is known as sunsetting the server. 

During this End of Life (EOL) period, teams might begin to lose access to their software tools or struggle to find support from the host of their platform. It’s common practice for Microsoft and other software solutions to set a fixed life cycle with an EOL date where these products and SQL database servers will no longer be supported.


Microsoft recently announced that they are halting support for servers and SQLs from 2012 and earlier on October 10th of this year. This means that there will be no security patching or support services from Microsoft or Microsoft Vendors.

If your practice is using Windows 2012 R2 servers, you may still be able to use your software without the threat of a Server Sunset. Microsoft has provided additional extended security updates that will extend the EOL date. To avoid the upcoming Server Sunset, consider purchasing an extension or hosting with the Phoenix Ortho Platform. 

Effects of Server End-of-Life Processes

As your server draws closer to its EOL date, there are several risks to consider. A big area of focus is security measures and how the data stored on these servers can remain protected during this time. 
During a Server Sunset, technology vendors will begin to phase out their support for customers. This means that there will be fewer opportunities to patch any problems that come up and increased vulnerabilities for hackers to attack private data. 

For any business, this poses a huge threat. Orthopedic practices that store the private information of patients on a server approaching its EOL must take proper precautions to keep their patients protected from malicious attacks

In order to keep this private data safe and secure, many cyber insurance policies require up-to-date servers that are HIPAA-compliant. When renewing cyber insurance policies the provider will often require that clinics have an updated server that’s frequently patched for enhanced security. Without an updated system, you might be faced with a higher premium when renewing your policy. 

Additionally, without support, your software will be increasingly difficult to use. As problems arise, there won’t be a support team to help you fix them. Instead, you’ll come face to face with roadblocks that will slow down your daily workflows and hinder your ability to provide high-quality services for your patients. 

To avoid these roadblocks, you may need to purchase an extended security update or consider the advantages of applying one of Phoenix Ortho’s intuitive cloud options to your clinic. 

Cloud Computing Benefits

Utilizing the cloud is a great way to advance your platform. When your current system is approaching its EOL and is no longer supported, keep in mind that cloud computing offers a range of benefits that can elevate your practice while keeping your patient’s data secure. 

Enhanced Server Performance

With old hardware, you’ll come across some performance issues. After sunsetting a server, these performance issues may grow worse. Cloud servers allow for practices to quickly enter and analyze data with just a few clicks. Streamlined workflows will enhance productivity and improve overall performance within your orthopedic clinic. 

Reduced Risk

Cloud servers are excellent for reducing the risk of data breaches within your practice. An IT support team is on standby to observe your software and make sure that there are no weak points within the system. Plus, as old technology needs updating, cloud servers stand out for being compliant with security operations and HIPAA requirements.

Lower Cyber Insurance Costs

Using a cloud or managed service provider means that all of your computing capabilities are housed in one space with fewer physical components. This means you’ll need insurance to help keep your business protected in case of a data breach. With updated software, you won’t need to pay as much for an insurance policy in contrast to the cost of maintaining on-premises legacy technology.

Ease of Access

Thanks to cloud software, patient records and other information can be accessed across a range of platforms and devices. When some staff members need a desktop, other physicians can use a mobile device to access the same information. This makes data sharing easier across devices to promote collaborative work and simplified digital processes.

Capital Expenses vs. Operational Expenses

Depending on what your practice needs, cloud software can reduce or even eliminate capital expenses. Since the software is the main component of the cloud server, there won’t be as many physical assets to be maintained. Instead, your business will need to maintain the cost of keeping your cloud server up and running but it is the responsibility of your vendor to keep the software up to date. 

Be sure to analyze your current expenses and what you need to determine if a cloud-based system is right for your business.

How to Utilize Phoenix Ortho Cloud Solutions For Your Orthopedic Practice

Your next step when approaching a Server Sunset should be to consider innovative cloud computing options that are designed specifically for orthopedic clinics. Besides traditional cloud hosting, Phoenix Ortho has partnered with True North to offer a hybrid Cloud solution; a system that uses both on-premises hardware and cloud servers to help keep your practice running smoothly while maintaining effective security measures to protect the privacy of your patients.

Benefits of the Cloud On-Site

A strong benefit of cloud servers is their ease of use, but sometimes there are outages that can hinder the performance of this technology. Combining a cloud server with a smaller on-premises hardware system will provide you with the security you are used to while ensuring a reliable internet connection on your local network. 

On-premise hardware or an off-site data center provides an opportunity to securely back up your data in case of a cyber attack or lost information. True North will assist with access to the data center to make sure that your practice can access the information needed to keep your clinic up and running without any roadblocks. 

Remote Support

Phoenix Ortho and True North fully manage the environment, whether it’s traditional cloud hosting or hybrid technology. This includes patching, security updates, and monitoring activity to protect the information needed for you to provide reliable services. 

When you come across any problems within your system, Phoenix Ortho and True North offer remote support to quickly resolve the issue. Additionally, if you have an IT team, this technology can be co-managed by all parties. 

Integration Capabilities

As technology advances, there are countless ways to integrate existing software functions within your cloud server. If you currently use PACS systems within your clinic, these functionalities can be integrated to the Cloud hosting platform. Plus, if you utilize third-party services to assist your clinic, the Cloud hosting solution allows for enhanced interoperability with other software solutions.

Reassess Your Server End of Life Process 

As your software begins its EOL process, make sure to take the time to reassess how you can enhance your practice. Technology is evolving at a very fast rate, but implementing Phoenix Ortho and True North’s Cloud hosting solution will allow you to keep up with these changes and continue to advance your clinic. 

True North recommends making a plan to upgrade your server about 90 days before the EOL date. With technology changing quickly, give yourself enough time to consider your options. 

Phoenix Ortho and True North have created a solution that is uniquely designed to meet the needs of orthopedic clinics. Acting fast can help you keep your data protected and improve the efficiency of your practice before the dreaded EOL date. 

Make sure you get ahead of your Server Sunset and reach out to Phoenix Ortho’s support team to learn more!

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