Windows Home Server Drive Extender – RIP

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Today, I felt compelled to make a comment on the Microsoft Connect site, which apparently is the place that Microsoft listens to the voice of the community. The following is the entirety of my comment:

I’m not going to dramatise this, but I feel compelled to say something here.
I’m not sure how far my comment will go or if anyone at Microsoft will read this, but here I go:

I have to admit, Drive Extender was one (If not THE) reason I moved over from a very stable self-built Linux home server to WHS. I’ve also advocated it through my own experiences and helped others who have had issues with WHS.

In my opinion, the original Xbox needs to be remembered as a product which Microsoft initially did very badly at in a very crowded marked but was able to leverage their overall platform and services advantage to make into a success in Xbox-v2 aka Xbox360. They also managed to give the industry veterans a bloody nose with an arguably superior product in many respects. I am an Xbox360 owner also, and am very happy, but clearly remember the lacking original product. Microsoft did not back down due to technical limitation/difficulty or SKU alignment with the Xbox, they added more features, observed their peers and achieved something amazing.

Lets see them do it again with WHS-v2 as it has the potential to take the home server market away from the many competitors who are already heralding WHS’s demise. Some of these notably include Data Robotics (Drobo) and the team that produces Amahi Linux home server (Not to mention the many many others that I wont mention here). HP also appear to be preparing to take the home server market in future using their WebOS product.

This is the beginning of something that will be huge in the future.
Home storage requirements are growing rapidly, and Microsoft is a brand that people know for better or worse. They need to step up to this or they risk losing the home server market before it gets anywhere. What the WHS product clearly needs is everything it currently has, but with a dedicated and consumer-focused team behind it. Its a product that should be considered for the long-haul race, not the proverbial sprint.

Come on Microsoft, do it properly.

That was it, but why did I feel that I needed to do it?
Drive Extender is an integral part of Windows Home Server and is being removed.

One thought on “Windows Home Server Drive Extender – RIP

    […] Redundancy) is a somewhat sore point on the history of WHS. A year ago I wrote a short article on this very blog where I touched upon a subject regarding the Drive Extender feature of the original WHS product […]


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