Old Technology Solutions – Every organization has some hidden somewhere.

It could be an old, unsupported storage system, or a tape library with 10+ year old backups still working.

This is also a common scenario in software. For example, consider an accounting software suite that was very expensive when purchased. If the vendor eventually goes out of business, the software will no longer be supported. In other words, the accounting solution works only on some older operating systems that are not even updated.

how much it’s worth keep running the old solution like thisOrganizations don’t like running old legacy systems just for fun, but often because it’s the only option, or at least the only cost-effective option available , have been forced to continue operating.

If it works, does it work…?

From a purely functional point of view, old technology is usually fine. Yes, the technology is outdated, but it still fills the role well. Companies continue to use outdated physical equipment. The reason is that you can still access your old storage system and read the tapes when you need them. It works well – and it has worked well for a long time.

So does old software. The software may be old, but accounting uses the old software to manage all their bills and payables, and it’s perfectly fine. Plus, anecdotally, older hardware outlasts modern hardware. Remember your grandma’s 40-year-old refrigerator, and if it lasts 10 years, yours will do just fine.

The same is true for IT, but for different reasons. Newer hardware is more complex and therefore has more fragile parts than older generations. But older hardware presents another risk inherent in it. Newer operating systems generally no longer support it. Running an end-of-life operating system is the only way to keep older workhorses running.

exchange arguments

So why would you want to update everything when your old system actually works well?

During the election period, “It’s the economy, you idiot.” On the other hand, in the IT world, “It’s security, stupid.” Old systems are inherently insecure. New vulnerabilities that affect older systems are still emerging all the time, but there are no new updates to these end-of-life systems that protect against these new threats.

This has complex consequences, not just for cybersecurity. For example, companies running unsupported systems may be in violation of compliance requirements. It is impossible to meet compliance metrics for timely patching of vulnerabilities if patches are not released in the first place.

Companies have tried many approaches to bridge the gap between the need to keep legacy systems running and the fact that those systems are inadequately updated. This is a headache for IT professionals who have tried everything from air-gapped systems to hiding systems behind multiple network-level security layers and implementing restrictive access controls around them.

Luckily there is an alternative

All the options mentioned affect normal use of the system and create their own set of challenges. The bravest (or least security conscious) IT teams cross their fingers and do nothing, hoping to do their best.

But let’s go back for a second. What’s the real problem with running an old system at the end of its life?

The reason is simple. Because there are no security updates available. The system is up and running, and it’s worth it just to keep it up and running. The only thing missing is timely security updates.

If you can find a way to apply security patches to a system at the end of its life, running that system is just like running the operating system announced last week. Because the system serves its intended purpose and performs safely.

Thankfully Extended support available, can be added to unsupported systems. For example, one option is to subscribe to extended support from your OS vendor. OS vendors extend the time period during which operating system version patches are available. However, this type of solution can be expensive and is not always implemented when it is most useful.

Affordable Extended Support

If the story we told sounds familiar, or if you rely on older systems as part of your IT infrastructure and want to learn more about how to keep them secure, TuxCare is for you.

and tax carewe provide Extended lifecycle support, affordable and nothing extra. Thanks to TuxCare, you can fix the problem and safely keep your valuable system running like everyone else until it’s appropriate to move the workload elsewhere.

Want to buy time to migrate to a supported OS and keep your old system running safely while still receiving security updates? Checkout Extended lifecycle support for TuxCare.

This article is written and sponsored by tax carean enterprise-grade industry leader Linux automation. TuxCare is a developer, IT security manager, and Linux server administrator Looking to enhance and simplify cybersecurity operations affordably. TuxCare’s Linux Kernel Live Security Patches and Standard and Enhanced support services Help protect and support over 1 million production workloads.

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