Kevin Royalty has been working in IT since the late 1980's. For the last several years he has partnered in Total Care Computer Consulting in southern Ohio/northern Kentucky. Total Care Computer Consulting specializes in small business solutions and Kevin is a Microsoft Small Business Server (SBS) MVP.
Kevin Royalty at GCPCUG
The Great Lakes Geek caught up with Kevin at a presentation to the Greater Cleveland PC Users Group on October 9, 2010. The topic was Microsoft Windows Home Server and that's what Kevin and the Geek talked about.
Windows Home Server (WHS) is an outstanding product for homes and small (up to 10 PCs) offices. WHS does seamless and complete backups of attached client PCs. To save space, it used data deduplictaion technology. The WHS is smart enough to know that it doesn't need to keep multiple copies of any file - even if it exists on multiple client PCs. That's a terrific storage savings.
If a hard drive dies, you can replace the drive and restore the entire drive (OS, apps, data, settings - everything) to the new drive. And WHS can also do bare metal restores to similar hardware.
There are other significant benefits to Windows Home Server such as the ability to access your files remotely from any Internet connection in the world.
The WHS not only stores and shares media and other files but it can stream them to PCs and devices on the network.
You can buy just the Windows Home Server software and install it on your own PC but both Kevin and I prefer to buy it bundled on one of the small devices on the market such as the HP Media Smart Server.
The unit doesn't require a monitor, keyboard or mouse so the footprint is minimal. Most WHS devices can have their storage capacity increased either with external or internal drives or both. You can also add to the functionality with different Add-ins.
Part 1 (of 2) on Windows Home Server
If you are a small business that requires heavy duty database or mail functionality, WHS is not the only server you will need. Small Business Server (SBS) would fit your needs much better. But, as Kevin points out, using a WHS on your SBS network is a great way to generate regular client backups.
Part 2 (of 2) on Windows Home Server
You can learn a lot more about Windows Home Server (including the next release code named Vail) at these and other websites.