Announcing the 3-year retirement of Windows Server 2022 on Azure Kubernetes Service

This post has been republished via RSS; it originally appeared at: Containers articles.

Windows Server 2025 and the Windows Server Annual Channel, offer a comprehensive array of enhanced features, heightened security measures, and improved overall performance, and with image portability customers can now run Windows Server 2022 based containers on these new versions. To maximize the experience for customers, not only will Windows Server 2025/Annual Channel provide the most efficient versions of Windows Server yet, but also streamline the upgrade process. In pursuit of an enhanced user experience and an unwavering commitment to safety and reliability, we will be retiring Windows Server 2022 on Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) in 3-years time. 


What does this mean for me? 

Windows Server 2022 will be retiring on AKS in March 2027. You should prepare to upgrade to a supported Windows Server version before March 2027. 


How can I upgrade my Windows nodepools? 

You can follow the Windows Server OS migration process outlined in the AKS documentation to upgrade to Windows Server 2025 or Annual Channel when they’re released on AKS. Portability is key feature available for Windows Server 2025/Annual Channel and onwards, the host and container image no longer need to be upgraded in tandem, older images can now work on newer hosts (ex. running Windows Server 2022 image on Windows Server 2025 host).  


Kubernetes version 1.34 will be the final version where Windows Server 2022 is supported on AKS. When Kubernetes version 1.34 is at the end of life on AKS, Windows Server 2022 will no longer be supported. Upgrades to Kubernetes 1.35 on AKS will be blocked if there are any remaining Windows Server 2022 node pools in the cluster. 


Windows Server 2025 on AKS and will offer numerous advantages and enhancements. At a high level, Windows Server 2025 introduces enhanced performance and reliability and improved networking support, including density improvements. Learn more about Windows Server 2025 from our recent announcements at Containers - Microsoft Community Hub. 


Our commitment centers on customer satisfaction and success, guiding our efforts to provide ample resources and time for upgrading to our premier operating system. Our aim is to simplify the upgrade process, enabling customers to fully leverage the benefits of Windows Server 2025/Annual Channel.  

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