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Microsoft issues a dire warning that its Home Server product may irreversibly damage pictures, torrents, and other files

Microsoft just announced a big bug that many users of its Windows Home Server users may wish to take note of.  Microsoft warned users not to edit files stored on their Windows Home Servers.  Editing and saving files on a home computer connected to Windows Home Server can lead to data corruption within a week it has been discovered.

Microsoft describes the problem, stating, "When you use certain programs to edit files on a home computer that uses Windows Home Server, the files may become corrupted when you save them to the home server. Several people have reported issues after they have used the following programs to save files to their home servers."

Microsoft details that the following file types are among those affected:

  • Photos
  • Office Outlook files (2007)
  • Office OneNote files (2003/2007)
  • Microsoft Money files
  • Quicken files
  • QuickBooks files
  • Torrent files

Microsoft has not yet announced a concrete schedule for the release of a patch to fix the problem.  It blames the current bug on an internal glitch with Windows Home Servers' shared folders code.  Microsoft is currently trying to reproduce the bug and better understand it.

An anonymous blog was posted on Microsoft's developers pages stating that Microsoft's Windows Home Server Team is working full-time through the holidays to try to fix the problem, so obviously it is a relatively significant issue.

Windows has aggressively tried to market its Home Server products and grow a business in consumer backup storage.  The Windows Home Server software retails for $189.99, while a number of partners produce the physical hardware.  Among these is the HP 500GB EX470, which retails for $599.99. 

So for a total of about $790 you can have a working home server set up for backup operations -- you just probably don't want to back up your pictures, emails, or torrent files on it for now.



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RE: ...
By Jack Ripoff on 12/30/2007 11:11:26 AM , Rating: 2
Centralized Backup: rsync, rdiff-backup;
Health Monitoring: snmp, clamav, snort;
File Sharing: samba, nfs;
Printer Sharing: cups, samba;
Previous Versions: rdiff-backup;
Headless Operation: webmin, ssh, xdmcp;
Remote administration: webmin, ssh, xdmcp;
Remote Access Gateway: netfilter, iptables;
Media Streaming: gstreamer, gnump3d;
Data redundancy: LVM;
Expandable Storage: LVM;
Extensibility through Add-Ins: httpd, php, perl, python, ruby... I could go on for a while.

Much lower system requirements. Doesn't corrupt your data. Oh, and here comes the best part: all this stuff you have to add onto Linux to do all that is free software. There is much more stuff available though, completely free as well.


RE: ...
By mindless1 on 12/30/2007 4:25:29 PM , Rating: 2
You have a good point, 'nix has established itself as the standard against which others are measured, but in this case we have a lot of irony:

Tech geeks proclaiming their geekiness by paying for a familiar (windows) interface instead of learning more about a different computer OS, how to use it, because let's face it most who are familiar with using 'nix wouldn't have given WHS a thought in the first place unless it were free. That's NOT to knock WHS, it's just a matter of practicality but also that someone who needed a home server and knew their way around 'nix, probably already had one that met their needs even if it didn't try to have line-item per line-item the same as some other product.


RE: ...
By TomZ on 12/31/2007 9:39:16 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Much lower system requirements. Doesn't corrupt your data. Oh, and here comes the best part: all this stuff you have to add onto Linux to do all that is free software. There is much more stuff available though, completely free as well.

Yes, and days and weeks later, finally get it all working together. Forget about it, WHS is a slam dunk. Just order a box from HP, plug it in, spend an hour or two configuring it, and you're done. To anyone who values their time at all, WHS is a no-brainer compared to a DIY solution.


RE: ...
By mindless1 on 12/31/2007 7:37:27 PM , Rating: 2
I believe we were talking about someone familiar with 'nix. Frankly it shouldn't be some topic to put a voodoo whammy on, even if someone likes windows more it would be a bit silly to just ignore having the skills to use what is in fact a widespread OS for servers.

WHS is clearly not a slam dunk. Note the issue upon which the news article is founded? As for an hour or two configuring, it does not take that much more time to configure 'nix, once you learn how. That is a reasonable argument against someone using 'nix if this is their only use ever, but on the other hand avoiding something new with that presumption of it only being a one-time use can tend to be a situation where once you knew how to use it well you found more and more uses. 'nix is here to stay for one important reason if no other - product costs can't support the windows price model in many cases.


RE: ...
By Jack Ripoff on 1/1/2008 11:57:22 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Yes, and days and weeks later, finally get it all working together. Forget about it, WHS is a slam dunk. Just order a box from HP, plug it in, spend an hour or two configuring it, and you're done. To anyone who values their time at all, WHS is a no-brainer compared to a DIY solution.

Whoever takes that long to set up a Unix/Linux server box is either a beginner or in very bad-will to do so. To anyone who values their data and their investment at all, Unix/Linux is a no-brainer compared to a Microsoft "solution".


RE: ...
By SmokeRngs on 12/31/2007 12:30:18 PM , Rating: 2
As much as I prefer Linux over Windows these days (5 of 5 computers ranging from P3s to C2Ds running one distro or another of Linux)the setup that WHS does right off the bat (I assume as I have never messed with it) is completely different from setting up a Linux server to do everything that WHS does.

I agree that most if not all of the same things can be done, it's not a total package ready for you to use like WHS.

For myself, I would prefer to setup a Linux box for my specific needs rather than purchase WHS. However, it's unlikely I would spend the time to setup a box like that for someone else if WHS would actually do everything for them. In my case, it's a time vs money issue with regards to other people. I enjoy messing around with Linux for my own personal uses and an increase of my knowledge of the OS in the different distros I use.

Also, take what I say with a grain of salt. I'm still very new to Linux and currently can't setup a box to do what WHS does. However, that's not to say someone that does know what they are doing can't have it setup in a snap.

Each one has their own strengths and weaknesses. I see WHS as a product that is to be easy to setup and use. I see setting up a Linux box as a more versatile solution with better customization and easier expandability of capabilities. Neither one is perfect for everyone but they both serve their purposes.

As I understand this problem, I see it as a major problem. This is not supposed to be something you see in regards to a server. If I had a file server corrupting my files and it wasn't a hardware problem, I would be very annoyed.

Since I see WHS as a good solution for a lot of people, I would hope MS gets this problem fixed very soon. I normally don't care to suggest MS software to people, but this is one of the few I would suggest. I hate to see something I would suggest to people for use as having a major problem such as this.


RE: ...
By robinthakur on 1/2/2008 5:15:54 AM , Rating: 2
I would class myself as highly technical and work in the IT industry in a senior MS server technology role now (MS SharePoint) previously having been a windows sysadmin, have a respectable IT degree and frequently develop in C#, but I have never used Linux, simply because whenever I installed it, I'd notice that certain drivers just wouldn't work properly and didn't have the knowledge to fix them. Trying to find said knowledge on the net was a complete pain and so frustrating to the extent whereby I just reinstalled the whole thing. I just couldn't find concise and simple guides, it was all fragmented and ratty posts in forums which you had to rely on. Of course this is often the case for Windows support as well, but there is a decent sized resource available. After not being able to fix the problem (which was installing the Nvidia drivers for my graphics card at the time, and not even going near finding and installing the linux driver for my USB ADSL modem!!) I eventually deinstalled it. I periodically install Linux releases from Redhat and Suse since then to see whether anything's improved, but to be honest, while a regular user might be happy with the default install and the settings you can change through the GUI, I like to tinker and installing/configuring anything above the standard install is really bewildering...that long list of free software you provided which apparently does all that Microsoft's offering and more is all well and good, but how hard is it to install it all and configure and is it properly documented in a central location? I would use it if it were reasonably easy to do this, but I doubt that it is. Hate to say it but Vista/Office2k7 ticks all the boxes for me s reliable and I'm happy with using it for everything but development. I will probably be flamed by the Linux faithful on this, but I'm only telling the truth from my perspective and I suspect I'm not alone.

R
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