Ramblings of a Home Server User

January 7, 2008

Update Codenamed "UR1" Has a name….

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tom @ 6:00 am

It’s been announced today at CES that the update previously code-named “UR1” is now called Power Pack 1. This update will include some much needed functionality, 64-bit Connector support for Windows Vista based clients, the ability to backup the Windows Home Server shared folders, and the much asked for ability to restrict access of Home Computers in Remote Access to certain users. I’ve been given the opportunity by Microsoft to test Power Pack 1, and there is definitely some cool functionality. Stay tuned for more information about Power Pack 1 as I do a detailed investigation of the new features provided in Power Pack 1 for Windows Home Server. Features and Screenshots below.

Full Feature List:

Windows Home Server Connector

· The Windows Home Server Connector can now be installed on home computers running Windows Vista x64 operating systems.

· Better guidance is provided when the home computer clock and home server clock differ significantly during Connector installation.

· Functionality is added to detect that the version of the Windows Home Server Connector software is aligned with the version of Windows Home Server software. Users will be prompted to update either the home computers or their home server software under certain circumstances.

· The Windows Home Server Connector tray icon should no longer cause a flickering issue when auto-hide task bar is enabled.

·The Connector setup infrastructure has been revamped to support updating and upgrading the Connector software.

Server Backup

· A new feature is added to enable the user to backup user-specified shared folders and the home computer backup database to an external hard drive.

· While adding a hard drive to the Windows Home Server, the user is now presented with an option to use the hard drive for backing up the home server. Once this option is selected, the home server will appear in the Computers & Backup tab – where a user can decide what information they want to store on this external hard drive.

Remote Access

· When adding/editing a user in the Home Server Console, in addition to enabling remote access for that user, there is now a drop down list box that allows the home server administrator to specify whether the user will have access to the computers tab, the shared folders tab, or both tabs in remote access.

· The Routers and Domain name configuration details dialogs in the Remote Access Settings page have been reworked to include more descriptive status, and contextual help links for failed tests.

· A new ‘Views’ drop-down list is added for the Shared Folders tab in remote access which allows the files in a shared folder to be displayed either as a list of files (‘Details’ view) or as thumbnails (‘Icons’ view). In ‘Icons’ view, the majority of the picture files will be represented as a thumbnails, and the rest of the non-picture files and folders will be displayed as large icons. 

· File upload functionality has been improved for users of Internet Explorer 6 and 7:

  • Users can drag and drop multiple files directly into an upload area or select multiple files in the open file dialog for upload.
  • Upload progress reporting has been improved, with the addition of a progress bar and individual file upload status.
  • Ability to cancel the multiple upload has been added as well.

· Ability for large file uploads to complete before the remote session times out has been implemented.

· When you download multiple files, the users are now given the option to package the files in a self extracting executable (.exe) file in addition to being able to store them in a ZIP file. Self extracting executable files should be used for downloading files with filenames that use non-ASCII characters (e.g. Japanese, Chinese, Korean, etc.).

Home PC Backup

· If the backup database on the home server has an inconsistency error, the user can now use the backup database repair wizard to correct this error. The repair wizard can be launched either through the Backup page in Settings, or by clicking on the backup database inconsistency error notification.

· A new option has been added to the Windows Home Server Connector tray icon that allows the user to enable or disable the home computer from waking up for backup if it is in sleep or hibernation mode.

· Users can now run Backup Cleanup while the single file restore dialog is open.

· Windows Vista SP1 was incorrectly reported as “Windows Server Longhorn Ultimate Edition” in the Computers & Backup tab.

· Home computers running any versions of Windows XP Media Center Edition (2004, 2005) will be displayed as “Windows XP Media Center Edition” in the computers and backup tab.

Media Sharing

· Windows Media Player playlists pointing at media files stored on a home server should now play correctly via Windows Media Connect when these playlists are copied over to a home server and shared out via media sharing.

Screenshots:

aboutwhs backup settings
backuprepair1 backuprepair2
backuprepair3 backuprepair4
ConnectorSetupWeb connsetup1
connsetup2 connsetup3
rafiledownload raiconview
rauploaddraganddrop rauploadlistview
userprop usersetup
hdadd1 hdadd2
hdadd3 hdadd4
hdadd5 srvbackupnow
srvbackupnow1 srvbackupnow2
srvbkpcomplete viewsrvbackup
Advertisements

5 Comments »

  1. I’m glad to see that they are providing a Vista x64 Connector, but what about a Windows XP x64 Connector? While Vista x64 is the “better” version of Vista, I still prefer XP x64.

    Comment by Spineless — January 7, 2008 @ 10:09 am

  2. Hi Spineless,

    There will be no 64 bit connector for Windows XP.

    Comment by Tom — January 7, 2008 @ 9:43 pm

  3. Do you know when PowerPack 1 will be released?

    Comment by peter forman — January 12, 2008 @ 12:23 pm

  4. WHS has a serious flaw, it’s called data corruption. The original publication date of this WHS fatal flaw was April 3, 2007 posted by Microsoft Corporation.

    URL: http://www.support.microsoft.com/kb/946676

    So why then did Microsoft sell WHS well after the beta period into the retail markets knowing full well about how their customers could experience data corruption errors not only regarding PC backup data, but even including Microsoft’s own software applications, such as OneNote, Outlook, Microsoft Money, Photo Gallery and other software like uTorrent, Quickbooks, etc…?

    What’s even more interesting is how this issue has NEVER been resolved even still as of Feb 6, 2008. A full 11 months later…

    Microsoft hasn’t publicly refuted this statement above by any official officers too.

    Instead, the whole issue has been downplayed and not disclosed upon to the public during the time of purchasing, or even mention during the many WHS reviews…

    Let’s start a website for all the Microsoft customers whom had lost their data, and proceed forward with a “Class Action” lawsuit.

    What else will it take to get Microsoft to take this seriously?

    Comment by Det. Chin Ho Kelly — February 6, 2008 @ 4:03 pm

  5. This just proves spending more money isn’t the answer…

    Why is everyone assuming you need a separate computer that only runs server code software just to share files? This software code can be written in your current operating system. Obviously, Microsoft wants everyone to assume that consumers need two different computers to do the same thing. It’s their centralized storage theory.

    For all those buying a new high end computer, to just run Vista and then go out and buy WHS, your actually insuring you just spent the highest cost in regards to the total cost of ownership to backup your data and share your photos, videos and data under limited means, to avoid higher CPU load, decreased throughput bandwidth issues and the constant ongoing development of third party solutions although very much needed into the WHS reduced window screen of the management console. How else to view WHS but as an appliance for the kids and hobbyist that Microsoft betrays (“Mommy, Why is There a Server in the House?”) in it’s advertising that because Father loves Mommy, the kids get a Microsoft server, yeah sure thing…

    Comment by Kay Addison — February 7, 2008 @ 2:51 pm


RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: