Databases are the longest-lived component

Most of you know that I write a technical article each week for the InformIT website - you can see a list of all my articles here. I’ve been writing for that site for – well, a really long time. I have articles all the way back to SQL Server version 7! The question was that we saw a huge uptick for an older SQL Server article there. A question was posed as to whether we should update that article, or remove it since it was on SQL Server 2000. My response? No!


In many firms I work with, the database is the last component to be upgraded. This is true not only with SQL Server, but with Oracle, DB/2 and even PostGres. Why is that? Well, for one thing, it’s the core of the development system – the data store. Changing it often is disruptive. Another factor is “it’s working, leave it alone”. Now I’m not advocating that behavior – I’ve written extensively that you should evaluate each release to see if the benefits it provides outweigh the cost of making the change, and I stand by that. But the fact of the matter is that there is still a lot of SQL Server 2005 out there, even 2000, when we’re up to ten years out of those releases.


So you’ll still see hundreds of articles on the sites I write for that contain older content. It’s marked that way, and we link to newer articles, but you still have a resource if you’re on an older system. Hopefully you’ll find those useful.

Comments (3)

  1. Steve Jones says:

    I have heard a large Fortune 50 company say that all their database servers need to run for 10 years at a minimum. They want to get a return on investment from work done in IT.

  2. Grant Fritchey says:

    Thanks for pointing this out. We're still running about 70% of our production systems on SQL Server 2000. Yeah, we're working to get upgrades going, but it really is the "it ain't broke, so don't fix it" thought process that gets in our way. Business users (and developers) want the next cool feature, not an upgrade in infrastructure. It's hard to get them on board with the time that will be needed testing a new server.

    Also, I know someone who still has 6.5 servers running (if you call it that), so these things can live a VERY long time.

  3. Ian C. says:

    And just what Do I do for a customer running Vulcan on a CP/M System? ( yes, it is Vulcan, the predecessor of Dbase. Yes, and the date on the executable is 10-15-78, and the current date is 12-10-10. Yes, 1910!

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