Microsoft bought the "HomeServer.Com" domain a year or so ago. The transaction that involved 3 companies, 4 foreign languages and 3 currencies. It took awhile to complete, and it is a funny story that I like to tell in person. But that is not what this post is about ...
When we enabled the Dynamic DNS services for Windows Home Server in the CTP build, we used to 2 test domains (livenode.com and livenode2.com) where Windows Home Server beta testers could get a personalized domain name (e.g. SmithFamily.livenode.com) for remote access to their home server while away from home.
I have some great news to share with all of our early beta testers. If you registered a personalized domain name with either livenode.com or livenode2.com prior to this weekend (August 3, 2007), that domain name will get transferred over to HomeServer.com when you install the RTM (Release to Manufacturing) version of Windows Home Server. This was a one time transfer as a "THANKS" to all of our early testers.
We worked hard to make this happen. We know how important it can be to get your desired personalized domain name. We never could promise this, until we were 100% sure it would work. It works !! I just installed the RTM copy of the Windows Home Server software (one advantage to working on the team) and my domain name automatically showed up as ______.homeserver.com after I logged in with my Windows Live ID.
Any future domain names registered with either the Release Candidate (RC) build or the Windows Home Server 120-day Evaluation edition will be registered as livenode.com domains and will not be transferred over to HomeServer.com. All new domain names registered with the RTM version of Windows Home Server will be using HomeServer.com starting today.
Thanks again to all of the early beta testers!!! Your feedback through the Connect site, Community Forums and Newsgroup throughout the testing of Windows Home Server has been fantastic.
Since the announcement of Windows Home Server RTM (Release to Manufacturing) in July, the team and our hardware partners have been aggressively gearing up for the final retail availability of solutions powered by Windows Home Server, slated for this Fall and in time for the holidays. We’ve received a substantial amount of positive feedback from the media, analysts, reviewers and our 100,000+ beta customer community who have been using the software. Also, as anticipated, the Windows Home Server system builder version is currently available through the system builder channel in many countries, and expected in U.S. in early September.
We’ve identified a number of ways to make the product even better since the initial release, As with most Microsoft products, updates to Windows Home Server will be automatically available throughout the lifecycle of the product and the WHS team is working on an update that will be available in September. These updates will enhance the usability and improve the out-of-the-box experience of home server solutions. Additional updates will occur over the lifespan of the product as we receive feedback from the user community, our hardware partners and software partners. Microsoft’s current plan is to make this update available as part of the monthly Windows Updates process in September.
HP has decided to include these first software updates in their MediaSmart Server. Both HP and Microsoft believe that these updates are in the best interest of potential customers and will insure the best out-of-the-box experience. All of our Windows Home Server partners and customers will automatically receive the update once posted to Windows Update.
Windows Home Server has come a long way from its inception, and we’re excited to deliver an integrated product that delivers on its full range of features, and is easy for everyone in the family to use and enjoy.
Shhhh. Don't tell anybody but my work laptop is a Macbook Pro. You see we bought a few of them for our test lab to ensure that Macs work great with Windows Home Server's centralized storage (they do).
Once testing was done these pretty laptops were just sitting in the lab unused. I had heard that Apple had released something called "Boot Camp" that would let you run Windows Vista on a Macbook Pro. I figure it was worth giving it a try...
Turns out the Macbook Pro makes a pretty good Vista laptop. Apple's Windows Vista drivers appear solid and it's basically just a well engineered x86 laptop. Mine looks really nice with a big "Windows Home Server" sticker on the cover :-). I've been using it pretty steadily for a few months, however, when I first set it up I didn't expect to use it long (I was just playing around) so I used the default partition size suggested by Boot Camp for my Vista partition (30GB I believe).
After a month or so of use, I found this was not big enough. I was down to just 1-2GB free. How to shrink the Mac partition and grow the Vista partition...?
Windows Home Server to the rescue. See, Windows Home Server's computer restore capability can restore to a larger hard drive (or partition) than the original. So here's what I did:
I did this same routine a few months ago at home when I upgraded my desktop machine with a larger hard disk, so it's useful for that scenario too.
Moral of the story? Windows Home Server Computer Restore is a great tool for dealing with ever changing hard disk sizes. Oh, and the Mac is a pretty nice Windows Vista PC.
P.S. Remember, you can find a copy of Windows Home Server Reviewer's Guide here. It provides a great overview of what the product does and how it works.