How Long Do Servers Last?


Parker July 21, 2022

Users update equipment due to planned maintenance, but sometimes there are occasions when we desire to update to newer servers due to improvements in the IT industry. The new equipment provides higher speed and higher quality service. They may even reduce OpEx by being cost-effective.

Timeline of Servers

Contrary to what an Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) may claim, you do not necessarily have to give up a good server just because a more modern one is available. The user’s demands, the efficiency of the hardware, and financial constraints must all be taken into account by each data center management when determining the best course of action. Is replacing working hardware the greatest use of money if there are alternative initiatives that might be more important?

Experimental Research on Server Lifetime

In a LinkedIn question, Curvature asked respondents if they believed that servers could survive between six and ten years. There were several reactions to this server lifecycle management prompt:

Some people objected, stating that “servers on a budget mature more quickly than carefully planned servers.” They also asked, “What productivity is lost when holding onto mature servers?” A commenter made it obvious that you should upgrade your hardware every three to five years to keep your software environment effective.

Furthermore, some respondents said that having servers survive between 6 and 10 years was a wonderful idea. Some believe that a company’s decision to replace its servers should be based on its applications and how well they fulfill its needs. This appears to be very rational.

In addition, we heard that “virtualization has modified my perspective on server existence. Users strategize their platforms to survive all types of failures and purchase first-class, used devices at a fragment of the cost.” Which is very smart, at Curvature we promote preowned hardware.

Related to this communication is the haunting question: What is the lifespan of servers?

lifecycle of servers in a data center

Fact or Myth: Server Hardware Lifecycle is 3-5 Years?

Surprisingly servers last much longer than most people think. Oftentimes, users think the server refresh time is determined by the OEM, typically when the server is between 3-5 years old. According to an analyst firm’s findings, the likely lifespan of servers is within 7-10 years. They also suggest that the lifespan for rack servers is around 6 years, and the lifespan of integrated systems is 10 years. Overall, this is 3 times lengthier than the replacement cycle for storage arrays and servers.

The leading analyst report and the OEM’s suggestion for IT hardware lifecycle management can be very different. Both will have a big impact on your organization’s ROI, costs, and downtime. Companies who replace well-functioning equipment can probably be using that money in other more important areas. Your ROI grows when you keep your equipment longer than expected.

Keep Your Servers

New technology is always available, but companies need to understand if the price of an upgrade or refresh is the best fit. Servers have an actual EOL date, but the date does not have to be set by the OEM. Regular data center hardware maintenance can help prolong the life of your equipment. Also purchasing refurbished and pre-owned hardware, can extend the lifecycle of your equipment past the 3-, 5-, or 10-year timeline.

Unfortunately, after years of maintenance, the IT hardware will finally need a replacement and upgrade. When this time comes around, Curvature has options for you! We can help with replacing or refurbishing a one asset or multiple assets and we will save you 65 – 85% over the OEM’s costs.

To learn more about the lifecycle of servers, contact us today!

About the Author

Parker, Park Place Assistant