Microsoft to Keep Windows Home Server Simple

Microsoft is targeting its Windows Home Server at mainstream consumers – the average Joe. The operating system is meant to run on its own computer that backs up data from all home computers on a given network, streams media (taken from Windows XP Media Center Edition) and provides remote access to documents over the internet. The software is obviously aimed at households with at least two other computers which is a market Microsoft estimates at about 40 million to 45 million worldwide. Such a device should retail between $500 and $1,000, depending on hardware, especially hard disk drive, specifications. The operating system is based on Windows Server 2003 and although it borrows from other Microsoft technologies, it has its own unique ones as well.

"The goal is trying to take the seams out [of backup and recovery]. There are too many choices and too many knobs and we ask too many questions. And we expect the people to know the answers to every question. We are designing the product for families and the second-tier purchaser, the enthused follower who really looks at the enthusiast for guidance. The dream is that for Father's Day, a wife would buy one for her husband because she understands the benefits of backup and remote access," said Todd Headrick, a senior product manager with Microsoft.

News source: vnunet.com

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The dream is that for Father's Day, a wife would buy one for her husband because she understands the benefits of backup and remote access,” said Todd Headrick, a senior product manager with Microsoft.

How...sexist. *rolls eyes*

Is this how Microsoft plan to finally "dominate the server space"?

I just can't see them selling more than a dozen of these in the next 5 years ... for the main selling-points they're pushing, there are entry-level devices out there already at a fraction of the price. And for those with a bit more computing nous, they're more likely to just get some old iron at a knockdown price and load it with Windows 2K/2K3 Server or *nix.

ermmm yes of course ...


Please show me a NAS device with 4 bays, plus 4 USB ports which can take extra external storage or 4 printers, which also performs full system backups of any PCs attached to the network, which also comes with HDDs, which also acts as a secure gateway for remote access to your home PCs, also includes a form of mirrored expandable RAID or RAID 5 arrays so my data is safe and also uses SMB shares so it can communicate with any OS for $500.


Because if you are seeing something I haven't... please do point it out.

ccuk said,
ermmm yes of course ...


Please show me a NAS device with 4 bays, plus 4 USB ports which can take extra external storage or 4 printers, which also performs full system backups of any PCs attached to the network, which also comes with HDDs, which also acts as a secure gateway for remote access to your home PCs, also includes a form of mirrored expandable RAID or RAID 5 arrays so my data is safe and also uses SMB shares so it can communicate with any OS for $500.


Because if you are seeing something I haven't... please do point it out.

I'd say:

$100 second-hand PC (ideally something cool running like a Duron 1.6, a Celeron 1.2, or a C3) or a $250 Linux special new.
$40 or so for two basic PCI SATA cards to provide a total of four ports(assuming the secondhand PC doesn't have SATA) IIRC, SATA does hot-swap natively.
$60 for a decent 350/400W power supply with enough SATA-style power plugs.

Drive mounting cages for easy removal, depending on wether you use just metal frames or full removable cartridges, $5-20 per, and fully optional.

At the absolute top end, the hardware costs $430, and that's assuming using new kit when recycled would be entirely adequate. A no-frills but still adequately performing model could be done at $200 to 220. Plus the price of drives, of course.

For the software, I could see a "NAS in a box" bootable-CD linux distribution being easily developed if it doesn't exist now. Linux has had software-RAID for years even if the SATA controllers don't have it in hardware.

Believe me, we need this. Most people who use computers wouldn't be able to find their ass with their hands and a road map.

Don't believe me? Go up to any person on the street and ask them if they have a computer. They'll ask "You mean that thing sitting under my desk?" or my personal favorite "You mean my hard drive?".

trparky said,
Believe me, we need this. Most people who use computers wouldn't be able to find their ass with their hands and a road map.

Don't believe me? Go up to any person on the street and ask them if they have a computer. They'll ask "You mean that thing sitting under my desk?" or my personal favorite "You mean my hard drive?".

It most suck were you live, if people over there are that retarded... that can't answer yes or no to a question.

Is this going to be a "Home Multimedia Server" or something? I would like that idea :P
I mean, think about it. Nowadays, it's all about making your own pc a media center, sorting your pictures, videos and music in all possible ways. But what happens when you have 3 or more computers in your house? Or two OSes on the same computer? Are you supposed to build entirely different music/pictures/video libraries in all of them? I wish I could have ALL our music/videos/pictures in one computer, and windows gave each computer the choice of "synchronizing" whatever we wanted to or from that "server" pc. We would need a HUGE hard drive though!

So, I like the idea :D
And, it's even better if files are accessible from the internet. If I'm on my laptop in University and want to stream some files... definitely useful!

Hardware with this installed will ahve no video cards ,or ports for keyboards. Just like a nas device

It will basically be a smart nas device for the home.

Go to paul thurrots site he has more info on it.

Also it will ahve no drive letters, and will do something sort of like raid but not

This does an awful lot but its basically a smart nas device.
If you build it yourself it will be a computer but alot of the things that will be already built are just like nas devices. only have a network connection and power cable.


majortom1981 said,
Go to paul thurrots site he has more info on it.

Um no, Paul Thurrot is about as ignorant about computers as they come.

DeeJay2 said,

Um no, Paul Thurrot is about as ignorant about computers as they come.

But of course you are a well known IT jurnalist with a popular windows news web site...

I cant wait for this i will defo buy one - i know its probably pointless might aswell build a system and put win server on it but im lazy, i like this as its all done for you!

Husband to Wife: "Make sure it has dual Geforce 8800GTX's in it, um, yeah, it will accelerate the backups. Yeah, that's it..."

I am wondering if this is going to be headless and accessed through some sort of web interface, or use a local keyboard/mouse/display? I am going to guess it uses both. Initial setup (and for those who only think of adminning a PC locally) will be done by plugging keyboard and display in. Maintenance and changes optionally done via a web interface.

There will be no mouse/keyboard/monitor ports. Everything will be controlled through an admin console that you install on another PC on your home network. There will be a web interface, but it will be use for remote access outside of the home mainly.

The dream is that for Father's Day, a wife would buy one for her husband because she understands the benefits of backup and remote access

Yeh that's the first thing that springs to mind

"Hey honey, I got you this WHS, not because I love you, but because we can FINALLY STOP LIVING IN FEAR OF OUR MEGAHURTZ BEING STOLEDED!!!11"

I can see this being a router situation. That's when you'll buy one. But $500-1000 is still expensive for "router situations"