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When does mainstream support end for SQL 2005

As per http://support.microsoft.com/lifecycle/?p1=2855 SQL 2005 sp3 support ended 10/Jan/2012 and sp4 was released on 13/Dec/2010. The note against sp4 says

"Support ends 12 months after the next service pack releases or at the end of the product's support lifecycle, whichever comes first. "

As there will be no sp5, does that mean that support for sp4 ended on 10/Jul/2007 ? !

Any advice (other than "What? you are still on SQL 2005?! You'd better upgrade") gratefully received.
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asked Jan 23 '12 at 04:26 AM in Default

Fatherjack gravatar image

Fatherjack ♦♦
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4 answers: sort voted first

No read that as 'if there is another service pack, then the support for this one expires 12 months after that one starts'.

Support for SP4 therefore ends at the end of the "product's support lifecycle" which is 12 April 2011 for mainstream support, and 12 April 2016 for extended support.

It's MS's way of saying if you have a problem on SP3, then try SP4 before whinging!
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answered Jan 23 '12 at 04:38 AM

Kev Riley gravatar image

Kev Riley ♦♦
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+1 from here
Jan 23 '12 at 05:14 AM Usman Butt

but sp3 is supported until 10/Jan/2012 - how can sp4 be supported for less time?

PS, not sure why I read the 10/Jul/2012 date instead of 12/Apr/11 - I blame the effects of reading licensing issues for too long.
Jan 23 '12 at 06:37 AM Fatherjack ♦♦
Aha..no "Support ends 12 months after the next service pack releases or at the end of the product's support lifecycle, whichever comes first"
Jan 23 '12 at 06:47 AM Kev Riley ♦♦
and sp3 is notionally supported until 10 Jan 2012, bar any further service pack, and as long as the product support hasn't expired. They are just arbitrary dates really. And confusing ones too!
Jan 23 '12 at 06:51 AM Kev Riley ♦♦

sp3 was certainly supported until 10/Jan/12 but sp4 was only supported until the same date? for a grand sum of 28 days? Vanilla product support has certainly ceased.

at the end of the day, is SQL 2005 sp4 still supported under mainstream support or is extended support needed?????
Jan 23 '12 at 06:58 AM Fatherjack ♦♦
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From the Support Lifecycle Policy, http://support.microsoft.com/gp/lifepolicy:

21. How can customers and partners estimate the support lifecycle for products that are not yet available or that are still in the Mainstream Support phase?

The Support Lifecycle policy is designed to help take the guesswork out of the length of time Microsoft provides support for a product. For Business and Developer products, Microsoft standardizes a minimum of 10 years of support. The lifecycle combines 5 years of Mainstream Support or 2 years after the successor product (N+1) is released, whichever is longer and 5 years Extended Support or 2 years after the second successor product (N+2) is released, whichever is longer. For Consumer, Hardware, and Multimedia products, Microsoft standardizes a minimum of 5 years of Mainstream Support or 2 years after the successor product (N+1) is released, whichever is longer. Products that release new versions annually will receive 3 years of Mainstream Support. Extended Support is not offered for Consumer, Hardware, and Multimedia products, and for products that release new versions annually. For information about end-of-support dates and any Extended support options (if applicable) for all products, visit the Select a Product for Lifecycle Information site (products listed by Product Family) or the Support Lifecycle Index site.

So you've either got Release date of SQL2008 + 2 years, or release date of SQL 2005 + 5 years, whichever is later. Given SQL Server 2008 was generally available in Nov 2008, and SQL Server 2005 was generally available in Jan 2006, it seems as though they've gone for a "neither of the above" option. Typical. However, we have got a better deal than either of those blind calculations would give, as shown by the Product Lifecycle website.

Given that everything on the Lifecycle search results at http://support.microsoft.com/lifecycle/search/default.aspx?sort=PN&alpha=SQL+Server+2005&Filter=FilterNO shows mainstream support ending for the main product (not for the specific service packs) on 2011-04-12, then that's when mainstream support ended for SQL Server 2005.
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answered Jan 23 '12 at 08:47 AM

ThomasRushton gravatar image

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Um, is that a "No" then?

And if so, it confirms that you consider the support for sp4 lasted 28 days?
Jan 23 '12 at 11:14 AM Fatherjack ♦♦
Not sure where you get the 28 days from, but SP4 was supported from its release on 13 Dec 2010 through to 12 April 2011.
Jan 23 '12 at 12:45 PM Kev Riley ♦♦
gah, tired - missed its Dec2010 - Jan2012... thats 1 year, and 28 days!
Jan 24 '12 at 12:48 AM Fatherjack ♦♦
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In addition to @Kev Riley 's answer, just to clear the ambiguity that on 10/Jul/2007, the mainstream support for only RTM version (SP0) expired. But since SP1 was there, so if someone needed mainstream support then had to be on SP1 at that time. Same is the case now, if someone wants mainstream support for SQL Server 2005, then the user must be running instance with SP4.

Now what does the mainstream support for SP4 ends mean?

  1. You cannot call or open a case with CSS for technical support if you are running these versions after the respective dates above. There are only 2 exceptions to this:

    . You are contacting CSS to get help with an upgrade to a supported version i.e. SQL Server 2008 OR higher versions
    . You have a Premier Support Agreement and have purchased something called a Custom Support Agreement (CSA) 
    
  2. Microsoft would produce hotfixes or security updates only for SQL Server 2008 OR Higher versions (Custom Support Agreement customers are the exception).

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answered Jan 23 '12 at 05:25 AM

Usman Butt gravatar image

Usman Butt
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so is SQL 2005 sp4 still supported by mainstream support and if so, what date does it cease?
Jan 23 '12 at 06:59 AM Fatherjack ♦♦
@FatherJack Sorry, that was just an example. I have corrected it for what now is the case. But as Kev Riley has said that Main stream support ended for SQL Server 2005 as the Product life cycle expired first. Now we can only ask for either extended support (pay money to get the support) OR support through Purchased Custom Support Agreement. This way Microsoft is making sure that either you have to migrate to higher versions (cost is there) OR pay per needed fixes/security updates etc. / whatever if you have a Customized agreement.
Jan 23 '12 at 08:56 PM Usman Butt
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asked: Jan 23 '12 at 04:26 AM

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Last Updated: Jan 23 '12 at 04:26 AM