Print 28 comment(s) - last by Ammohunt.. on Dec 2 at 3:38 PM

The largest supporter of Windows Home Server calls its quits

When it rains it pours. Last week we learned that Microsoft was dropping the popular Drive Extender feature from the next version of Windows Home Server, codenamed "Vail". Today we here even more damning news: HP is pulling out of the Windows Home Server market.

This is a huge blow to both fans of HP's tiny little MediaSmart Servers and to Microsoft. HP was easily the highest profile and largest shipping customer of Windows Home Server devices and this news could very well be a death blow for the platform.

For its part, HP says that it will instead be focusing on bringing out webOS products in 2011 instead of working on niche products like MediaSmart Server. According to WeGotServed, lower than expected sales for the servers were probably a big reason for pulling out of the market, although the removal of Drive Extender in Vail probably didn't do HP any favors either.

The Windows Home Server Team responded to the news on its blog reiterating that HP will continue selling its current MediaSmart Server products through the end of the year and that it will continue to support its current customers. Microsoft also explicitly denied any claims that the removal of Drive Extender was behind the motivation of HP to abandon the platform.

The future of the Windows Home Server platform doesn't exactly look bright now -- with HP now out of the mix, Microsoft could only offer up Acer and Tranquil as strong supporters of the platform.

“Vail will have a big impact on the home media environment, providing an easy streaming and seamless digital file sharing experience for consumers, and Acer is excited to be alongside Microsoft delivering on this goal,” said Gianpiero Morbello, Acer Group Corporate Vice President Marketing & Brand.

Maybe Microsoft knows something that we don't, but Vail could very well end up meaning "Fail" come next year.

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RE: Not Suprised
By sdsdv10 on 12/1/2010 7:07:58 PM , Rating: 2
WHS was epic fail from the start.

Maybe for you, but for me and hundreds (thousands?) of others at places like "We Got Served" it has been a godsend. Almost zero learning curve, cheap to build (if you have parts laying around like I did) and very reliable. It is clear from your previous posts you have a different usage pattern, but for me and many others like me it was/is a perfect solution to a whole home backup/server appliance.

RE: Not Suprised
By Ammohunt on 12/2/2010 3:38:30 PM , Rating: 2
Not really a different usage pattern but WHS in my mind should have included more obvious features and took on a greater role as a server in the home.Imagine a single low powered server that perhaps controls the entire house? entertainment, environmentals, backups family website,remote access, email, network routing, lighting the list goes on and on. Still to this day i don't have a single home server solution i just abandoned HTPC functionality for an Apple TV and use a atom based Gentoo Linux server for Firewall/dhcp/dns/samba/ntp/http/ssh/mail duties(which i plan to replace with a Marvell based sheeva guru plug server running gentoo..wish me luck!).

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