January 3, 2008 spout

WHS Continues to Rock My World

In the same way that .NET manages memory for you, Windows Home Server manages storage. All you have to do is tell it the names of shared folders you want it to have and which computers to back up and it will spread it and duplicate it across however many HDDs you have, without you worrying about which actual HDD your Music” folder is on or where your wife’s computer is being backed up to.

Plus, if you have more than one HDD and you have Enable Folder Duplication” enabled for a shared folder, the data in that folder will be shared across multiple HDDs, effectively giving you the benefits of RAID without the config muss and fuss. (It’s my understanding that this cross-HDD data duplication happens automatically for backed up data, but I don’t know how to confirm that empirically without risking the data.  : )

Because a 750GB SATA HDD was $156 at newegg.com, it was a no-brainer to pick one up. It arrived today and it was mean-time of 10 minutes between tearing the tape off the box and the new HDD being used for data storage on my WHS. I didn’t even have to turn off the HP MediaServer machine!

All I did was pull an empty drawer forward, place the new HDD into it and push the drawer closed. Seating the drawer also seated both the data and power connections on the HDD itself, no wires or plastic connectors needed. I want all HDDs to work this way!

10 seconds later, the little light went on that said my new HDD was ready to be added as storage to my WHS, which only took right-clicking in the WHS console (already updated to display the new HDD) and adding it as storage. Another 10 seconds and some additional settings changes to enable folder duplication on my shared folders and the new HDD is in active service, providing redundant storage for all the data I care about in the house.

Really, the only problem I have now is that I only have enough data to fill 14% of the 1.4TB of new storage space. Maybe we need a Windows Friends & Family Server and I could rent out the extra space? : )