LAS VEGAS — Jan. 8, 2007 — In his keynote address Sunday at the 2007 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates unveiled Microsoft Corp.’s plans for an innovative consumer software product available later this year: Windows® Home Server.
Delivered on hardware from leading partners, Windows Home Server will help families with multiple PCs connect their home computers, digital devices and printers, in order to easily store, protect and share their treasured photos, music, videos and documents. By automatically backing up home PCs, centralizing a family’s digital “stuff” and allowing access to it away from home, Windows Home Server will help simplify and enhance family life.
“As computers and digital media become more and more central to family life, we need better ways to organize, share and protect digital content and information at home,” said Bill Gates, chairman of Microsoft. “Windows Home Server makes it easy for families to save, protect and access digital memories and experiences so they can focus on using technology to organize their day-to-day lives, explore their interests and share their memories with the people they care about.”
Later this year, HP plans to deliver the HP MediaSmart Server, powered by Windows Home Server software. HP and Microsoft will demonstrate their combined hardware and software innovation at CES this week.
“HP is working to help people get the most out of their home networks,” said Satjiv Chahil, senior vice president of marketing in the Personal Systems Group at HP. “HP and Microsoft have worked closely throughout the respective development cycles of the HP MediaSmart Server and Windows Home Server software to create a simple yet compelling product for the digital home unlike any other on the market today.”
Simplifying Digital Life
Simple to set up and use, Windows Home Server takes advantage of the familiarity of the Windows operating system to help families easily store and organize digital content. As consumers use Windows Vista™ to create, find and enjoy digital media, Windows Home Server will be an ideal solution to help manage, protect and access that content. Families using the product will be able to automatically back up every Windows Vista or Windows XP-based computer in the home and completely restore, or “rewind,” a PC to a time when it was working well. They will also be able to use Windows Home Server to centrally monitor the health of their Windows Vista-based PCs, to proactively identify and resolve problems.
Connecting Digital Devices and Experiences
Windows Home Server customers can use a personalized Windows Live™ Internet address to connect to Windows Home Server from outside of the home. As a result, they can share photos with friends and family and enjoy their music and videos. Families can use the Xbox 360™ video game and entertainment system or other Windows Media Connect-supported devices to view or listen to digital media stored on Windows Home Server, as well. They can also connect a printer to Windows Home Server in order to print from any connected PC in the home.
Growing With the Needs of the Digital Lifestyle
Windows Home Server centralizes a family’s digital content and easily grows with the need for more space. Documents, photos, music and videos are easy to locate and are no longer at risk of being trapped or lost on individual hard drives. With simple setup of pre-defined shared folders, families can keep and preserve all of their precious digital content. A simple pie chart indicates when more storage capacity is needed and families can just plug in a new hard drive to add space.
A Platform for a World of Home Solutions
As a software platform and an “always on” device in the home, Windows Home Server offers independent software vendors tremendous opportunities to build innovative products for the digital home. Microsoft anticipates that a wide range of third-party applications and tools will emerge for Windows Home Server, such as family schedule management, home automation systems, security solutions and more.
Windows Home Server will eventually be delivered through a multitude of hardware partners. At CES this week AMD is announcing the AMD LIVE!™ Home Media Server, a reference design platform for Windows Home Server. Inventec Corp. and Quanta Computer Inc. are also demonstrating hardware reference designs, complementing the HP MediaSmart Server product demonstrated in Bill Gates’ keynote address and in the Microsoft booth. The HP MediaSmart Server offers massive storage capacity through four hard drive bays and four USB ports. It also comes equipped with HP Photo Webshare.
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