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Despite Microsoft’s considerable investment in SQL Server 2005 if never captured the strong market momentum that SQL Server 2000 did. The problem, essentially it was a victim of its own previous success. SQL Server 2005 for all its merits was not significantly compelling enough, in a lot of cases, to motivate organizations to upgrade existing installations. New database applications installations used 2005, which has seen SQL Server 2005 steadily grow its install base. But here we are 4 years after release and most production databases still remain on SQL Server 2000 (fast approaching its 10 year anniversary). My own data shows the breakdown as follows:
Production SQL Server Installs
- 54% – SQL Server 2000
- 45% – SQL Server 2005
- 1% – SQL Server 2008
Those SQL Server 2000 installations are now quickly reaching end of life. Their hardware is out of date (32bit), and the database platform is now out of date. Upgrades are becoming a forced requirement. SQL Server 2005 will now be skipped with upgrades going straight to SQL Server 2008.
With millions of production SQL Server 2000 installations still in existence, I see a strong period of growth for those making tools that assist with the upgrade or consolidation of SQL Server databases.